Lexington, Kentucky - Mattress and pillow manufacturer Tempur-Pedic International Inc. said recently that the current challenging economic environment is a major factor in its failure up to mid-March to meet planned first quarter sales in the US. These have been "significantly below the company's plan, as a result of economic factors affecting consumer spending," Tempur said in a 17 March statement.
Sales through the US direct channel have been "much weaker than planned," which along with other factors will result in a gross margin rate considerably lower than previously anticipated, the company said.
"Based on recent industry data and feedback from retailers, we believe the US mattress industry is experiencing an unprecedented slowdown, " said Tempur-Pedic president & ceo Thomas Bryant, in the statement.
Tempur-Pedic said it expects total sales for Q1 2008 to be a percentage decrease of high single digits compared to the prior year. Domestic net sales for Q1 will show a "percentage decrease in the high teens," while, in contrast, the group said that international net sales in Q1 will show a percentage increase in high single digits compared to Q1 2007.
"Our operating expenses and advertising plans anticipated a stronger retail environment," Bryant said, pointing out that the company is acting to reduce expenses.