Simplicity Sofas – A History of the Company
In 2003 designer/inventor/master craftsman Glenn Laughlin and furniture industry veteran Jeff Frank teamed up to solve a perplexing problem faced by thousands of consumers each year.
High quality sofas and loveseats were too big to fit through many of the narrow doors and stairways found in older homes and apartments.
Glenn and Jeff spent four years perfecting the revolutionary technology that became the world's first (and only) high end custom-built self-assembly upholstered furniture.
In 2007 Simplicity Sofas opened a factory in High Point, NC to manufacture the world’s first custom-built high quality quick-assembly seating. Three months went by before the company made its first sale.
There was other challenges as well. RTA (Ready-To-Assemble) furniture is universally perceived as lower quality and lower priced. The primary appeal of RTA furniture was that it was cheaper than "normal" furniture.
In contrast the high quality self-assembly furniture introduced by Simplicity Sofas actually cost more to build than conventional sofas with similar quality.
From the very beginning furniture retailers completely rejected the idea. They were certain that consumers would never accept high priced sofas that required assembly. Simplicity Sofas had no other option than to sell its furniture directly to consumers.
Opening the new factory just as the Recession took hold added an additional challenge. The furniture industry was one of the hardest hit sectors of the economy. 40% of American furniture manufacturers closed down from 2007 through 2010. During that same period Simplicity Sofas grew from $0 to $700,000 annually.
Less than three years after opening, the company had outgrown its original factory and moved production to a larger manufacturing facility nearby.
Some of the company’s milestones include:
• The introduction of a new patented design for sectionals. These sectionals fit through narrow entranceways as small as 8” in width and are available in dozens of different configurations and sizes.
• Simplicity Sofas completes its 5th year in business without any negative reviews since opening in 2007.
• Simplicity Sofas discontinues use of 1.8 density foam in seat cushions and uses only 2.5 density Ultracel foam..
• Simplicity Sofas is named a finalist for the CX (Customer Experience) Innovation Awards presented by the 1500+ member Customer Experience Professionals Association (CXPA.)
• The new Megan style sofa receives a "Best of Market" award at the International Home Furnishings Market.
• Simplicity Sofas is awarded a $20,000 Grand Prize in a national competition for Most Innovative American Small Business.
• The ManCave TV show features Simplicity Sofas (the first of two shows.)
• Simplicity Sofas completes its 6th year in business without any negative reviews.
• A new line of patented quick-assembly sleepers is introduced. Like all Simplicity Sofas furniture the new sleepers can be assembled in 15 minutes or less without tools and fit through 15” wide doorways.
• The company's new sleeper design receives a "Best of Market" award at the International Home Furnishings Market.
• Actor and author William Shatner invites Simplicity Sofas’ owner to be interviewed for his new book about entrepreneurship. During the interview Mr. Shatner quips, "Simplicity Sofas boldly goes where no furniture has gone before."
• The Washington Post publishes two feature articles about Simplicity Sofas.
• Simplicity Sofas completes its 7th year in business without any negative reviews.
• Simplicity Sofas completes its 8th year in business without any negative reviews.
• Simplicity Sofas moves into a new 31,000 sq. ft. manufacturing and showroom facility.
• Simplicity Sofas completes its 9th year in business without any negative reviews.
• Simplicity Sofas introduces Simplicity-in-Motion, a line of quick-assembly solid oak recliners and reclining sofas.
• Simplicity Sofas introduces leather and American made performance fabrics.
• Simplicity Sofas launches its new website.
• Simplicity Sofas moves its manufacturing and offices to a new facility located at 414 Grayson St. in High Point and stops production of its reclining furniture and lower-cost product line sold through Wayfair, Amazon and other major online retailers.
• Simplicity Sofas is purchased by Dimarmel, Inc. a local High Point, NC manufacturer specializing in custom and contract furniture and moves its production facilities and offices to the Dimarmel factory located at 414 Grayson St. in High Point.
• Simplicity Sofas is listed as one of the top 15 companies in the international RTA (Ready to Assemble) furniture market.