Best of British: Shout out

Mike Aramayo, Buoyant Upholstery md on making more noise and a forgotten trade

What do you see as the main advantages of being a UK manufacturer?

There are three main advantages to being a UK manufacturer: the first is the flair for design we have. Designers across the country, including my own design team, are at the forefront of current trends and styles that shape the way we create furniture. Secondly, UK manufacturers can offer quick delivery, with fantastic transport systems and large fleets at their disposal. Finally, there is the quality workmanship that goes into every piece of furniture we make. The UK is renowned the world over for fine craftsmanship in our products.

What efforts do you take to promote these advantages to UK retailers?

We make a constant effort to keep our customers up to date with new designs and ideas. Our sales and marketing teams work hard to communicate with our customer base through many forms of social media, advertising in trade publications and direct marketing in the form of e-shots and newsletters.

Do you think UK retailers understand sufficiently the advantages of sourcing from UK manufacturers?

I think this depends mostly on their size. The majority of retailers cannot afford to buy a full container and pay in advance. I think that many retailers know that dealing with non-UK companies presents more challenges than solutions.

Do retailers make enough of the fact to their customers that they are selling UK-made products?

No, personally I don’t believe they do. We do not fly the ‘Made in UK’ flag enough. Both the manufacturing and retail sectors of the UK furniture industry need to be making more noise about their British-made products. I am a director of the BFM and am constantly pushing the Made in the UK campaign.

What would you like to see the UK government do to help UK manufacturing?

Manufacturing upholstery in the UK often feels as though it has become a forgotten trade to the powers-that-be. We are not pushing job opportunities, the furniture market as a whole or the simple fact that UK manufacturers need all the help they can get.

Do you have overseas markets, and if so how has this changed since Brexit?

Our overseas market deals mainly with the Republic of Ireland. This has only become stronger after Brexit and Covid. We are seeing an increase in demand for quality UK-made furniture.

BuoyantHarlow

Subscribe

And receive a glossy copy of our magazine straight to your door

Subscribe to our newsletter

Receive weekly industry news straight to your inbox.

I agree with the Terms and Conditions and the Privacy Policy detailed at the bottom of this website.