DFS Furniture has announced that it plans to sell its Sofa Workshop business to Halo Furnishings for £0.3m.
The acquisition comprises UK 20 stores and an online retail business. Halo's founder Tim Oulton says he intends to complement Sofa Workshop’s most popular ranges with the best designs from his global wholesale business, which supplies leading premium furniture retailers across the world.
Under the new name Sofa Workshop by Timothy Oulton, the brand will offer over 100 models in more than 500 different sizes and configurations.
Tim Oulton comments: “Sofa Workshop has long been a respected brand in the UK market. I am very excited to bring to it a wider range of our globally bestselling sofa designs, along with lighting and cabinet collections. Our furniture is made to order, one by one, by hand, using simple tools and time-honoured techniques. That culture of craftsmanship has always been key for Timothy Oulton, and will remain at the heart of the philosophy at Sofa Workshop by Timothy Oulton.”
DFS CEO Tim Stacey says: "Over the course of the past few months we have reviewed our strategy and plans across the group with a focus on ensuring our brands are in the best possible position to support the group in maximising its return on capital.
"We will remain focused on the core elements of our strategy, namely accelerating investment in technology and omnichannel initiatives for our two scale brands, DFS and Sofology, while ensuring our complementary Dwell brand generates a consistent return. As the clear market leader with strong recognition of our brands, high showroom sales densities and advantageous vertical integration, we feel well positioned to drive shareholder returns.
“This transaction represents a great opportunity for Sofa Workshop and I’d like to thank all our colleagues for their hard work and commitment since the business was acquired by the group seven years ago, and wish them every success in the future."
Established in 1976 in the UK and 2004 in Asia, the Halo Group is a world leader in the luxury furniture and lifestyle market. Halo operates in distinct but integrated segments in wholesale and retail, as well as the interiors project space. It has several brands including Timothy Oulton, Noble Souls, Outlaw, Bleu Nature and Freehand.
The business is being sold on a cash, working capital and debt-free basis. The deal remains subject to regulatory approval.
The announcement follows the publication of a trading statement earlier this week in which DFS reported strong trade, with YoY order intake growth over the last six weeks equivalent to some £70m in revenue, significantly ahead of expectations.
"We believe that this trading performance reflects a combination of consumers currently spending more on their homes relative to other sectors, latent demand caused by the nationwide lockdown and also a strengthening advantage from our hybrid digital and physical retail offering, which is particularly relevant in this consumer environment," reads the statement.