DFS is the leading living room furniture retail group in the UK. Although we are most famous for our DFS operations – the UK’s largest and most profitable sofa retailer – we are also the proud owners of the Sofology, Dwell and Sofa Workshop retail businesses.
By trading through four retailer brands we are able to offer tailored customer propositions, with each brand business unit appealing differently to targeted customer segments. However, to help us offer customers great value for money and to grow our profitability we are working to reduce costs through collaboration across our Group, in particular by benefitting from the scale of DFS. Critically, we will only seek such Group synergies where we are satisfied we can maintain the distinctiveness and integrity of each brand’s customer proposition.
While our DFS business is the clear UK market leader and drives the majority of Group revenues and profits, Sofology, Dwell and Sofa Workshop are each on a growth journey, and are making clear progress each year towards national scale. We believe that as they mature they will represent an increasingly important part of the Group and will generate attractive returns in future.
Total Group employees 5,500+
Total Group retail stores 235
DFS is the leading retailer of sofas and living room furniture in the UK. It has a leading ecommerce platform operating in English, Spanish and Dutch, and also 124 showrooms in the UK, Ireland, the Netherlands and Spain. In addition to its showrooms DFS operates 20 Customer Distribution Centre warehouses offering an efficient last-mile two-man delivery service.
The DFS business is promotionally led with distinctive and broad reaching advertising campaigns that focus on comfort, quality and value for money. DFS has a leading share with each customer segment that we identify, which means that on aggregate its customers have a national average income and are frequently families with young children.
DFS sells a wide range of fabric and leather sofas across a broad range of styles. Of particular note is the depth of choice of unit types in each product range it sells and the large number of colour and material choices. Products are complemented by an interest-free credit offer which is independently rated as market leading, British Standards kitemark accreditation, long-term guarantees and comprehensive after-sales service.
Other than the clearance of discontinued showroom models and customer returns the DFS upholstery proposition is wholly “made-to-order”, with finished goods only being produced once a binding customer order is received. Products are made either in our five UK factories or through a limited number of manufacturer partners located in the UK, Italy, Eastern Europe and the Far East.
Showrooms typically range in size of retail space between 10 and 15,000 sq.ft. and are located very commonly on major retail parks that are easy for customers to access. Because of its significant advertising spend, DFS is frequently an anchor tenant on these parks and attracts significant footfall in the sector as a destination retailer.
Total DFS retail stores 125
Sofology is the third largest retailer of sofas in the UK, despite having only a partial national footprint with its 41 stores. In contrast to DFS its marketing approach is not promotionally led, focusing instead on emphasising its product design, comfort and no-commission sales approach. While its brand has mass-market appeal, its customer base tends to be slightly more affluent then average and tends to have older children or be empty-nesters.
Like DFS, Sofology is a sofa and living room specialist with a broad range of upholstery products in fabric and leather and a range of living room accessories such as tables and rugs. Its range is differentiated from the market through emphasis of a number of design-led on-trend products, while also maintaining a broader range of attractive mass-market designs.
Sofology’s showrooms tend to be very modern in appearance and will typically have 12,500 – 20,000 square feet of retail space across a ground floor and mezzanine. In addition to its stores Sofology operates six warehouses providing last mile two man delivery service.
Total Sofology retail stores 42
Dwell sells stylish, modern furniture, lighting and home accessories online and from 36 stores, mostly collocated alongside DFS showrooms. Its customers tend to be affluent and slightly older families in the 35-55 age range. In contrast to the rest of the Group, Dwell operates a stocked model allowing very short customer lead times.
Total Dwell retail stores 36
Sofa Workshop is a premium retailer of exclusively British-made furniture, based in Godalming and operating 31 stores. Its customers tend to be high income families with older children who may have left home. The product range is distinct through exceptional quality and also through offering customers the option to bespoke much of the range in both dimensions and fabric coverings. Its products are made-to-order in a number of UK based partner workshops.
Total Sofa Workshop retail stores 32