Housewares bedding: Simmons’ mattress-in-a-box at show
Simmons and Company International will debut an improved ready-to-assemble (RTA) mattress-in-a-box at the International Housewares Show in Chicago, IL. The RTA mattress, which was previewed at the International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, NC, in Apr 1996, will be available for less than $150. The mattress can be assembled in minutes and carries a five year, non-prorated warranty. Manufacturer offers in both sizes: full size futon mattress, twin size, queen size and king size.
By thinking outside the box, Simmons Co. has given mass merchant a reason to rethink what can fit inside a box.
Nearly a year it was previewed at the International Home Furnishings Market in High Point, the Simmons RTA mattress-in-a-box will debut at the International Housewares Show in Chicago this week.
Futon mattresses at the housewares show?
"Absolutely," stressed Craig Dorsher, vice president and general manager of Simmons specialty sleep products division. "The mass market is where this project needs to be. Right alongside ready-to-assemble bookshelves and entertainment centers.
"The Simmons ready-to-assemble mattress lines provide the mass merchant and the discounter the opportunity to bring in new sales dollars and new margin dollars into their stores," Dorsher continued.
The RTA mattress that was previewed last April was "a great idea, but we needed to take the time to refine the product, expand the product line, and fine-tune our marketing strategy," said Dorsher.
"We've refined the product based on feedback from retailers. We also conducted a number of consumer focus groups to really define our target audience and develop our marketing efforts," he added.
Based on retailers' comments, Simmons has brought down the retail price, from an original starting price $199 to less than $150. The price of a full size futon mattress is just about $130 only.
The original product, named Equation of Sleep, or EOS, was a single model available in twin and full sizes. Now Simmons is offering a line of RTA mattresses.
Dorsher said "By offering a number of products, retailers can select what is best for their target audience."
The product line features Simmons' exclusive Pocket Coil technology. Vacuum-packed collapsed segments of the mattress along with a removable, quilted cover in one box. Simmons is able to reduce the volume of the traditional mattress by 50 percent, intended to make it a "true cash-and-carry item for the mass merchant and discounter," he remarked.
Each mattress in the collection assembles in minutes, can be re-shrunk to an easy-to-store size using a two-horse-power shop vacuum, and carries a five-year, non-prorated warranty.
The Simmons Crash Pad, available in twin and full sizes, and the Simmons Ultimate Guest Bed, available in twin, full and queen sizes, are entry-level products. They are identical in construction and have different ticking and quilt patterns. Both are expected to have retail prices under $139 for a twin futon mattress, $199 for a full futon mattress.
A step-up model--dubbed Sleepers Choice--offers extra-plush quilting and ticking. Sleepers Choice is available in twin, full, queen, king and California king sizes, with twin starting at $159 retail.
A differently packaged group, marketed under the EOS name, is targeted for catalog and UPS sales. Also in the lineup is the BunkMate, a smaller version of the Crash Pad for bunk beds, available with a 7- or a 5.5-inch profile height.
A ready-to-assemble foundation and a Shrink 'n Store kit, which keeps the mattress collapsed for storage, are also available for all models.
Simmons is also offering point-of-sale materials, including an in-store loop video.
Preliminary interest from a number of mass retailers has been good, said Dorsher, adding, "We've been selectively showing the products to retailers at the High Point market and in the Northeast and several are preparing to add this to their spring offerings."