Resting easy mattress futon
Business Activity: Heartland Futons & Fibers makes room beds and couches as well as bunk beds for pets at its warehouse in the Locust Business District, just west of downtown. The reason why Heartland is different from many other full size futon mattress makers is their products are created from recycled materials. The business creates the pet beds, including a detachable slipcase cover.
Executives: Chip Lerwick, 28, is the president of the business and his wife, Katie, 26, is vice president. Chip, a native of St. Louis and also a graduate of Webster University, worked for Rising Star, a midsize and full size futon mattress maker in Oregon, before coming to St. Louis. Katie is accountable for the company's personnel management, promotion, bookkeeping and office administration.
Company history: As soon as the Lerwicks returned in Oregon in August 1993, they started Heartland because of the Midwest licensee of Rising Star's futons. After the one-year contract using Growing Star finished, they decided to go on their own. Their full size futon mattresses are made from recycled 2-liter soda bottles, although some are available with virgin foam on the top. It's one of only two futon companies in the nation that make futons made of 100% recycled material, based on Lerwick - the other of Rising Star.
Workers: Along with Katie, Heartland applies three fulltime individuals focusing around the futons on a yearlong basis. Doug Ross is sales manager for your company.
Products: Developed by the Japanese generations before, full size futon mattresses are flexible mattresses that have no springs. They come in traditional bed sizes which use all the full size futon mattresses and become the largest offering. Earth Rush is the company's premiere manufacturer with 100% recycled fibers. The fibers are created by shredding, melting and spinning polyethylene terephalate (P.E.T.) from soda bottles to soft fibers which are combed to a center.
The fibers are fire arming, water repellant and do not absorb odors. The futons will not break down over time and have a shape 'memory' so they spring back to shape after each use. Most of the firm's futons will last about ten decades.
Futons made from recycled substances have sold for approximately twice as far as people made out of cotton, but the gap is narrowing, according to Lerwick because of the gains in cotton prices globally.
Full-size futons vary in price from $120 for the all-cotton model to $240 for the Earth Rest.
The business began making P.E.T. beds for dogs and cats. They range in price from $30 to $80 for a full size futon mattress.
Earnings: Earnings are expected to surpass $500,000 this year after hitting on $300,000 from 1994, the first year for Heartland.
Customers: Heartland's largest customer in St. Louis is Futon Express, which includes four stores, one in Kansas City and one in Chicago. The majority of the organization's customers are east of the Rockies with a significant concentration in the Midwest. College towns are good locations for auto sales. The weeks of June, July and August are the most economical for Heartland. Many of the sales are to school students during these months and to people who've vacationing guests throughout the summertime. Even the Christmas holiday season is also one of the best-selling occasions for futons.
Professional services: Boatmen's is that your firm's lender and Lerwick secured a credit line out of Boatmen's to start his company. Rubin Brown & Gornstein is the organization's accountant.
Marketing: Trade shows existing Heartland with a few of its best chances to sell its products. The firm also promotes in trade magazines.