Furniture First National Buying Group recently announced that two retailers have recently joined: Berk’s Furniture & Mattress in Hackettstown, NJ and Dean Bosler’s Furniture and Mattress Showrooms in Evansville, IN.
Established in 1975, Dean Bosler’s Furniture and Mattress Showrooms serves the Evansville, Indiana area with two adjacent showrooms. Mark Bosler is transitioning to leadership of the store, taking the reins from his brother Dean. Shortly after joining Furniture First, Mark turned to the community of member stores for help with a technology challenge at the business. The problem was posted on the group’s member-only bulletin board and received immediate responses of recommendations and action steps to take to resolve the challenge.
“This type of networking and support is exactly what I was told would happen and I couldn’t be more satisfied and happy to be a part of Furniture First,” said Mark Bosler in the aftermath.
The family business now known as Berk’s Furniture & Mattress has been serving the Warren, Morris, and Sussex County and Northern New Jersey areas for more than 50 years. Sibling owners Amy and Justin Berkowitz reinvented and rebranded their family business in 2015. Formerly known as HTP Clearance and Consignment, it was established in the early 1960’s as a branch location of the Washington Trading Post, which Joe Berkowitz, Amy and Justin’s grandfather, established in 1945. Joe’s sons Jerry and Joel (Amy and Justin’s father) ran the business through the end of the century with Amy joining the business in 2001 and Justin joining in 2003.
The name changed to Berk’s Furniture & Mattress in 2015. With the name change, came a larger selection of furniture at discounted prices and available for quick delivery.
Both stores will be participating in a new member orientation session that will be held immediately prior to the group’s annual symposium, which will be held at the JW Marriot in Phoenix, Arizona May 15-17. “We are doing this to make sure that new members truly understand full range of the products and services we offer them,” said Amanda Daubert, Director of Services at Furniture First. “This is another way to solidify our relationship with our new members.”
A recent survey by the group found that 70% of their member stores are run by a second, third or greater generation of ownership. Many turn to the group when transitioning leadership from one generation to the next. “We hear all the time that that what makes our group different from the other buying groups is that our members are like family,” said Dino Cifelli, CEO of Furniture First. “Yes, retailers join for the rebates, but it’s those other factors that keep them in the group.”
More about Furniture First:
Furniture First is a cooperative national home furnishings and mattress buying group serving full line independent retailers with sales over $2 million. A recent analysis found that collectively the group represents $2 billion in retail sales through 460 member store fronts. For more information on Furniture First Membership, please visit www.FurnitureFirst.coop/join or call 800-411-3477. For more information, visit www.FurnitureFirst.com
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