Wiltshire furniture company sees sales of £17m
A company that was formed by two teenage friends just eight years ago saw sales of £17m last year.
Wiltshire online company Furniturebox was set up by Monty George and Dan Beckles when they were just 18.
Seven years later and the Chippenham company is making annual profits of £2.4m and the duo are plotting further growth.
The two friends, who live in Bristol, have recently invested £3m in a new 88,000 sq ft new headquarters and warehouse at St Modwen Park business estate which will allow them to do next day deliveries nationwide.
They now employ just over 50 staff and are looking to break into the US market.
Dan said: “Moving into the new warehouse has been incredibly exciting because we can increase our capacity by fivefold and it is so easy to dispatch orders being right next to the M4.
“We are running an incredibly efficient model which means we can easily access all the markets which are important to us – from our own website to other big online sellers such as Amazon, Robert Dyas and many more.
“The business has really grown over the last three years and now we are looking to expand internationally with that solid foundation behind us.”
Monty said: “I could see that there was a huge market for furniture and it was very under-developed online. I bought a couple of containers of furniture and persuaded Dan to join forces with me to sell it online. That is how the business started.”
A partnership with Brightpearl, a Bristol business which offers e-commerce software, has been a key part of the firm’s growth.
Dan said: “Brightpearl has been incredibly important for us because we sell through nine different channels in the UK but we are now expanding in the US through the big furniture store Wayfair.
“Without Brightpearl, we were having to draw data from different channels and everything was being done manually. Monty and I were cutting and pasting orders onto Amazon on a Sunday night before starting the new week on a Monday. It was exhausting. Suddenly all those orders were inputted electronically and it revolutionised the business.
“Finally we had an automated central hub for all our activities – from sales to stock management.
“It meant that we have been able to cut back on staffing doing manual administration and reinvest those savings in other areas of the business.”