Today was by far the busiest of the show so far, and brought an understanding of what visitors had been doing. After a visit to The Furniture Show at Cranmore Park (more on that later), the NEC was by far busier than it had been on Sunday and Monday. Halls were far more filled with visitors and stands were busier than they had been.
Ensuring stock availability also supported sales growth, says the world's largest furniture retailer. Ikea boosted sales by 9.8% to €27.6bn in the year to 31 August, as it benefited from cutting its prices and investing in stock availability. Net profits rose by 8% to €3.2bn.
The chain's run of sales growth continued despite the weather. In the week to 19 January John Lewis enjoyed sales growth of 6.7%, helped by the success of its online operations and geographic spread.
The amount of carpet waste that was diverted from landfill jumped by almost a third last year. Some 21.4% of waste was diverted in 2012, according to Carpet Recycling UK, a rose of 30%. CRUK's target is 25% landfill diversion by 2015.
An independent furniture retailer says high street stores must behave like a retail park to keep shoppers in-town. Tom Shattock, owner of Leighton Buzzard store TK Furniture has decided to permanently open on Sundays, after a trial period in the run up to Christmas.
Balcaen adds laminate maker to vinyl empire. Vinyl flooring manufacturer IVC has bought laminate manufacturer Balterio for an undisclosed amount.
The number of mortgages approved has climbed for the fifth successive month to its highest level in three years. December saw 55,785 mortgages approved according to the Bank of England, the highest total since January 2012 and before that December 2009.
A decline in oil and gas output caused by maintenance delays meant the UK economy was flat in 2012, after dropping by 0.3% in the forth quarter. The oil and gas fall accounted for two-thirds of the drop and excluding that the economy would have grown last year.
Origin Red is to take over the distribution of YP Furniture's Country House collection ahead of the closure of the JDP Furniture Group subsidiary. Origin Red has been manufacturing the painted furniture range for a few years on behalf of JDP, and intends to keep YP's network of sales agents.
Organic growth beginning to return, says CBI chief. 'We are beginning to see the return of organic growth, with clear signs that firms offering the right products into the right markets are growing sales and expanding,' says John Cridland, CBI director general.
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