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Furniture Flagship Stores worldwide, a new report by CSIL


There are different ways to explain what a flagship store is. Usually it is defined as a monobrand store (although not all monobrand stores can be considered flagship stores) and frequently it is located in the very heart of a fast growing city (but sometimes the best location could be in a loft of a former industrial site…). A store having the most trained sales force, medium to big size, and showcasing a complete range of the company products. These are other criteria to bear in mind.

Investment in the region of one million Eur is needed to build a furniture flagship store from scratch. Furniture in the stock can easily be worth some 250 thousand Eur (depending on brand and size of the store) and the cost for building a store can be easily in the region of 2000 Eur per sq.m. So, it is a hard work to do. Not for ‘common’ furniture manufacturers.


In its new report, CSIL could identify at least two main drivers for establishing monobrand stores: on the one hand, there is a urgent need to “explain” the philosophy and product range of a trendsetter company, and, on the other hand,rents in megacities like London, Tokyo or Rome are getting more and more expensive.

Furniture distribution in the mass market progressively left the city centers. The cost of investment to re-launch a trendsetter furniture store is now frequently shared between furniture manufacturers and retailers. The rentability of the store will be sustained by a high rate of success in the sales deals (25% is a good score) and contract sales. There are also successful alternatives like shop-in-shops (usually sized 100- 150 sq.m.) or co-branding or showcasing the company range in “real houses”: Christine Kroncke, 10 Corso Como, and Lago Apartments are three examples of different retail opportunities.

Flagship stores may have many and well located windows (8 windows for Natuzzi store in Beirut) and they are well equipped with all kind of new generation retail software. Frequently, flagship stores are designed by archistars (Hirsch Associates for the new Roche Bobois store in Chicago) A flagship store should not be necessarily big but, for example, The Kraftwerk of Kare Design in Munich has an exhibiting surface of some 10,000 sq.m.

Asia Pacific is home of a new wave of flagship stores run by leading international furniture players, like, for example, the new Kartell store (designed by Ferruccio Laviani) opened in Beijing at Sunlitun Village, in cooperation with the Chinese company Gold Bond Enterprises. The store has a large 400 sq. m. showroom just nearby, where architects, clients and contractors can see the whole collection.

The Report Furniture Flagship Stores worldwide provides 300 case histories on monobrand and flagship stores managed by trendsetter furniture players in selected countries. Most of these stores are located in the top 100 Megacities and Fast Growing Cities, that will host a relevant part of the world population and revenues by the year 2020. For more information contact Aurelio Volpe,


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