The furniture industry is composed of the furniture manufacturers (dining rooms, bedrooms, kitchens, outdoor creations, bathrooms, office furniture, …), seating (lounges, seats, chairs, ...) and mattresses and bed bases.
This product group includes the following groups:
- Furniture and Chair,
The Belgian furniture offering is multi-faceted and offers something for everyone: from timeless and classic to contemporary, leading design.
The importance of exports, even during the corona pandemic
The successive waves of the coronavirus had a huge impact on the export efforts in 2020, as well as in 2021. Indeed, around 60% of Belgian furniture production is sold abroad. The corona pandemic meant that planned prospecting trips had to be cancelled or postponed, and the trade fair calendar was also seriously impacted, with most events being cancelled. Nevertheless, exports remain an important lever for the Belgian furniture industry.
BelgoFurn, Fedustria's export promotion unit, facilitates the search for foreign customers for Belgian furniture companies and assists them in finding new markets. In this context, an annual programme of initiatives is drawn up, which is partly supported by Flanders Investment and Trade (FIT). On 25 November 2021, Fedustria, as a strategic partner, signed a new cooperation agreement with FIT for the period 2022-2026.
Finger on the European pulse
EFIC, the European Furniture Industries Confederation, represents the interests of the furniture industry in Europe. As a founding member of this organisation, Fedustria is closely involved in all activities to support our sectors at the European level.
Owing to the strong interdependence, many European furniture companies faced shortages of raw materials, parts and semi-finished products during the corona pandemic, which - combined with exorbitant prices for containers and raw materials - led to disruptions to production and longer delivery times, and therefore a seriously disrupted logistics chain and furniture sales. Moreover, the uncoordinated responses of Member States in terms of lockdowns, store and border closures and slow vaccination programmes exacerbated the complications. Consequently, the EFIC and Fedustria called on the EU authorities for a coordinated approach and a level playing field.
Trend toward home renovation delivers top year for furniture manufacturers
Following the outbreak of the corona crisis in March 2020, people were obliged to stay home a lot, and even required to work from home. In addition, restaurants and cafes, and cultural centres, were closed for a period, and travel was very difficult. The result was that people 'rediscovered' their own homes. The money saved for holidays, for example, was then spent on upgrading and renovating their homes. The furniture sector, both indoor and outdoor furniture, fully capitalised on the situation. However, by the end of 2021, the trend appeared to have already passed its peak.
Belgian Design Showroom
In 2020, the first Belgian Design Showroom opened in Toronto, the design capital of Canada. It is a unique collaboration between 14 Belgian companies with a long-term presence on the Canadian market, via a joint showroom. Find out more about the participating companies, and view the showroom at www.belgiandesignshowroom.com.
In the search for new export opportunities for 2022, Belgian exporters set their sights on Dubai as a new sales market. The first contacts have since been made to open a Belgian Design Showroom there as well.
The Furniture Bible - 2022 Edition
A new edition of the Belgian Furniture Bible, the basic tool for the collective promotion of our furniture sector at home and abroad, was published in 2022. The individual presentations of the extensive range of manufacturers and brands, supplemented by eye-catching images of products and realisations, provide domestic and foreign buyers with a superb overview of what Belgium has to offer in the domain of furniture. The Furniture Bible was therefore distributed en masse at the Brussels Furniture Fair. This Furniture Bible was also handed out at the June 2022 edition of the Salone del Mobile in Milan.
Annual Event Furniture 2022
On Wednesday 21 September 2022, Fedustria and BelgoFurn organised the third edition of the Annual Furniture Event in Durbuy. An initiation to golf was followed by an evening event in Durbuy, with a performance by stand-up comedian Bert Kruismans and Luc Meers of the Mecam Group and president of Fedustria's Furniture Council. This networking event concluded with an enjoyable dinner.
E-business - Sector platform for digital data exchange between furniture manufacturers and retailers
Via the Fedustria-Navem joint working group, work continued in 2022 on the e-business dossier and the sector platform, onto which furniture manufacturers and retailers can graft their existing software packages and exchange data (digital product catalogues, orders, order confirmations, and further down the line also dispatching advices, invoices, etc.) electronically and securely. In spring 2021, a cooperation agreement at the sector level was signed by Fedustria, Navem (furniture retail) and a preferential software partner.
|Number of companies||722|
|Number of employees||9.763|
|Turnover (in million EUR)||2.300|
|Exported quota||57 %|
|Turnover evolution in 2022 (in volume)||-14 %|
|Share in the total turnover of the Belgian woodworking and furniture industry||33 %|