National buying group Furniture First recently announced that their 2015 Symposium will be held May 31 - June 2 at the brand new Omni Hotel in Nashville, Tennessee. The theme for this event is “Your Ticket to Breakthrough Performance,” acknowledging Nashville’s reputation as Music City. Members will participate in peer-to-peer and vendor-led networking sessions, attend presentations given by retail experts, and learn from inspiring keynote speakers. After sessions and at the conclusion of events, attendees can enjoy the night life and attractions of downtown Nashville, including the nearby Music City Center, Honky Tonk Row and the Country Music Hall of Fame expansion adjoining the hotel.
The group’s 2014 Symposium in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, was their most successful Symposium to date, with attendance reaching an all-time high. Furniture First hopes to set new records for 2015. “The benefit for participating members and vendor partners is the same – the opportunity to work together and learn together,” commented Bill Hartman, President of Furniture First. “We build as much face time into the schedule as possible so that retailers and vendors can network to gather insights and new ideas. These interactions, combined with structured sessions and presentations, give the Symposium value as a complete business tool.”
Attending members gave enthusiastic feedback on their 2014 Symposium experiences. “We came home with answers, insight, solutions, and ideas for problems and challenges that we have had,” said Ed Kennedy, owner of Great Deals on Furniture in Martinez, GA. “That alone was worth the trip.” Kelly Meckes, owner of Jerry’s Home Furnishings in Mansfield, OH, commented that the event was “…well prepared, little wasted time, informative speakers, engaging round table discussions, and fun to boot! Good to see the sponsors from our vendors involved in the activities.”
To help promote and organize the next event, Furniture First will again use their Symposium microsite. This website, built in-house by Furniture First staff, will highlight the meeting agenda and session descriptions, provide guest speaker bios, list local restaurants and attractions, and allow members to register online.
was founded in 1994 and today the group is comprised of 210 independent retailers with 446 stores in 47 states. Collectively, Furniture First Members produce $1.7 billion in retail sales. Furniture First is a national “Home Furnishings and Mattress” only buying group serving the over $2 million full line independent retailer. For more information on Furniture First, please call Bill Hartman at 800-411-3477, ext. 123 or email BHartman@FurnitureFirst.com
Furniture World Magazine-Business solutions for furniture retailers