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Future perspectives and opportunities for French furniture exporters


France is today fifth largest furniture manufacturer and exporter in Europe (28). With a production reaching an estimated 7 billion Euros in 2016 and an export on production ratio of 26% (23% in 2010), French furniture manufacturers have large potential for exports in the coming years.


Although it is estimated that the Asian Pacific region will show the largest growth rates in terms of furniture consumption in the coming years, Europe’s furniture consumption returned to growth in 2014, a trend which is estimated to continue. The European market is interesting for French residential and non-residential furniture exports for several reasons including the geographical proximity, “time to market”, fragmented/differentiated supplies but also very dynamic growth rates in some specific markets.


This was precisely the issue Sylvia Weichenberger, CSIL senior partner, developed in her presentation during the annual Export Meeting 2017 ( De l'Europe à l'Iran) of GEM (Group of French furniture exporters) on the 14th of June in Paris, France. The focus of the presentation was based on future perspectives and opportunities for French exporters in the United Kingdom, Spain and Switzerland. Furniture consumption and import/consumption ratio were analysed for each country as well as growth rates of French furniture by segment present in these markets. Distribution and consumer behaviour were scanned and recent examples of company performances pointed out.


The presentation was closed with a short analysis of the new driving force of furniture consumption: online sales. With 2/3 of European consumers being motivated to buy furniture on the internet and internet retailers posting double digit growth rates, not only traditional retailers but increasingly manufacturers study the possibility of selling their furniture online.

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