Boyd Specialty Sleep to offer Furniture Brands-licensed line
Thomas Russell — Furniture Today, May 14, 2013
Furniture Brands International has entered into a licensing agreement that will allow Boyd Specialty Sleep to market mattresses and other sleep products under several of FBI's well-known brands.
Boyd will offer sleep products under the Broyhill, Lane, Thomasville and Drexel Heritage. The products will cover a range of styles and medium to "ultra-premium" retail price points, officials said.
The Thomasville licensing rights are for air beds and latex mattresses, while the other agreements cover non-innerspring products ranging from mattresses and pillows to toppers and adjustable bed bases, the companies said. This is believed to be the first licensing arrangement to sell bedding products under the Broyhill, Lane and Drexel Heritage brands. In the past, Thomasville has had a co-branded mattress line with Simmons for sale in its Thomasville stores and galleries and currently sells Kingsdown mattresses in those venues.
Denny Boyd, Boyd Specialty Sleep's president, said the new licensed lines will be promoted to retailers and consumers through a variety of Internet marketing campaigns and social media platforms. The first Boyd Specialty Sleep FBI introductions will debut at the summer Las Vegas Market, July 29-August 2. They will include air and latex bedding collections under the Thomasville brand and foam and gel bedding collections under the Broyhill brand. Boyd said it will launch mattresses and various sleep accessories under the Lane and Drexel Heritage brands at subsequent markets.
"The Broyhill, Lane, Drexel Heritage and Thomasville names represent iconic brands that resonate extremely well with affluent customers in the 25-to-64 age range," Boyd said in a statement. "These revered brands transfer seamlessly to the mattress and sleep accessories category and speak to consumers who are interested in a quality night's sleep. We are confident the combination of our high quality offering under these well-recognized furniture brand names on mattresses, top of bed products and adjustable bed frames will greatly enhance the shopping experience and elevate the concept of a 'total sleep experience' in the consumer's mind."
"Boyd Specialty Sleep is a well-respected leader and a pioneer of innovative sleep products in the industry," added Mark Wiltshire, president of Furniture Brands' special markets division. "They have a shared commitment to successfully develop each branded collection to reflect the positioning and heritage of each of our brands, and we are very excited to have them as a new licensing partner."
Boyd Specialty Sleep Nears Energy Autonomy
Home Furnishings Business, April, 2013
Boyd Specialty Sleep will achieve self-sufficiency for its electrical power needs at its St. Louis and Fontana, Calif., by July 1.
After more than two years of planning and in keeping with its strategic environmental focus, the company’s $2.75 million investment in solar paneled roof systems for both its 320,000-square-foot California factory and its 70,000-square-foot Missouri facility will save Boyd more than $100,000 in its own usage the first year and will enable Boyd to sell back excess electrical power to major energy providers.
The investment translates to the electrical supply of about 250 homes each year. Meanwhile, Boyd's savings are expected to increase annually as energy costs increase.
"For years our mission as a business has been to focus on the health and safety of consumers and on the environmental impact of our products and processes," said president Denny Boyd . "We see ourselves as an integral part of the communities in which we operate. As such, it's our responsibility to be energy-conscious and to give back to those communities, while at the same time doing what makes sense for our business."
Boyd, who said that federal energy credits also played a role in his decision to become self-sufficient, contracted with SunEdison to build, operate and maintain the systems on the company's Fontana roof space. Under the Fontana contract, 35 percent of the roof will host Boyd's solar panels; the balance of roof space will be leased to SunEdison, which will install its own panels. Once the system is activated, SunEdison will make "operating rent payments" to Boyd for hosting the solar PV (photovoltaic) structures as part of Southern California Edison's program enabling businesses to become electrical power suppliers. With more than 800 solar projects in operation, SunEdison has worked with big-box retailers, production plants, distribution centers and corporate facilities across the country. SunEdison customers have included AT&T, Anheuser-Busch, Staples, Whole Foods, Macy's, Wal-Mart and Kohl's.
For its St. Louis facility, Boyd has purchased the entire solar panel system, which will be installed by June of this year.
"These moves reflect my philosophy that in every industry, companies need to find ways to maximize efficiency by doing more with less," Boyd said. "I believe we're doing the right thing at each of our locations." As the former president of the Specialty Sleep Association, Boyd was a driving force behind the development of the organization's Environmental and Safety Program and became the first U.S. bedding producer in 2010 to earn Level 1 product compliance within the program. Today, the company uses only foam manufactured in pressurized chambers to eliminate release of harmful VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) into the environment. Rayon fabrics made from sustainable bamboo fiber are also pervasive across Boyd's product lines.
Boyd Specialty Sleep is Committed to
Christopher Schriever — Bedroom Magazine, June, 2012
A prodigious innovator of myriad sleep accessories since 1977, Boyd Specialty Sleep's portfolio of new accessory products provides ample proof that its already strong commitment to the category has only intensified.
The St. Louis, Missouri-based specialty sleep accessory producer is adding two new pillows to its existing series, which already features six different styles. And, the new roll-outs do not end there. Boyd is also introducing a redesigned Natural Flex® latex topper; a new Purify® mattress protector and two new decorative bed platforms, which will expand its current range of 10 frame designs. Every Boyd sleep accessory product is designed to be UPS-shippable.
"Retailers who add sleep accessories to their range of merchandise will find that they can be a very lucrative addition to their inventory, especially if they understand how to showcase their quality and affordability to buyers," explained president Denny Boyd. Offering accessories such as pillows, toppers, protectors and decorative frames give customers more options and improve their sleep comfort and quality. These items also offer retailers a golden opportunity: to educate customers that the quality sleep involves, not just buying a mattress but creating an entire, multi-faceted sleep environment.
Boyd's new LUNA LUX™ and Seasons™ pillows, each of which carries a five-year warranty, feature two vastly different looks, feels and functions. The semi-circular-shaped LUNA LUX pillow— designed to provide ergonomic comfort for sleepers of all height and weight ranges—is made of MicroTec™ Gel memory foam, covered in an off-white "teddy bear" velour fabric that's removable and washable. Expected to retail at $39.99 (standard size), the pillow has gray piping that outlines its unique, half-moon form.
The new Seasons pillow provides sleepers the choice of a cool surface to offset high temperatures during the warmer months and a warmer surface during the cooler months— all in one pillow. At $59.99 retail (standard size), the twosided, conventionally shaped Seasons pillow is made of molded memory foam. The cool sleeping slide features a solid gel layer that is affixed to the foam's surface and a micro-cell stretch knit cover, finely perforated at the edges, which enables the pillow to "breathe" as a sleeper shifts position. The warm sleeping side offers the comfort of the molded memory foam, covered with Boyd's soft, teddy velour fabric.
Also headlining the producer's accessory intros for the Las Vegas market, are a new Natural Flex two-inch topper, which is expected to retail at $299 in queen. The Natural Flex topper features high-quality latex encased in a stretchable honeycomb-like knit fabric quilted with layers of polyester comfort fibers.
Boyd is also introducing a redesign of its Purify® Mattress Protector; at $49.99 in queen, it's air-permeable and water- and stain-proof.
Finally, the company is making perhaps its most dramatic sleep accessory presentation in this market with two new, modern platform bed frames at "price points that will make sense to any mattress store," Boyd noted. At $399 each in queen, both decorative frames feature steel tubing in a black matte powder-coat finish, with copper-finish accents. "The design is intended to be sleek, sharp and contemporary," said Boyd. "Retailers will recognize that the price of the frames doesn't overpower the price of the mattress.Shoppers will appreciate the level of styling and design they get for the purchase price." The City Silhouette model has S-shaped sides and features leather-like black headboard supports. Its sister model, Urban Eve, offers C-shaped side styling and a copper-finish pillow support bar.
Other innovative sleep accessory products on display in Boyd Specialty Sleep's B-901 showroom include patent-pending designs, such as the East Adjust™ manually adjustable bed base, the Comfort Ease® foldaway guest bed, and the Bonus Base™ platform frame with optional canvas pull-out Hide-A-Way Drawers™ for under-bed storage. "The better retailers are putting more time and effort into selling sleep accessories and they're seeing the results," Boyd concluded. Our objective is to continue to develop this important and profitable sleep category."
Boyd likes platform frames
David Perry — Furniture Today, May 21, 2012
Bedding pioneer Denny Boyd believes that decorative and functional bed bases are the "foundations of the future." And he's putting that belief into action, rapidly expanding his platform frame offerings.
Following the successful introduction and retail placement of as many as 10 UPS-able platform frames in less than a year, Boyd Specialty Sleep will further broaden its line this year.
The producer of mattresses, sleep accessories and furniture is developing new steel frame designs to round out its collection of bed platforms that retail from $299 to $599 in queen. "Not only is there brisk demand for decorative, shippable bed frames among Internet retailers, but demand is quickly increasing among brick-and-mortar sleep shops and furniture stores," said Boyd, president of Boyd Specialty Sleep. "It's a matter of being able to offer both form and function at affordable price points. A platform performs the same function as a standard box spring and frame in that it keeps the bed off the floor. But if that can be accomplished in a way that's simpler, equally or more durable, more visually arresting and easily distributed - for at or near the same cost - then it delivers far more than mere function," he said.
Boyd said foundations and box springs have generally become commodity products that are spacers between the mattress and frame. But he said that stylish frames "enhance the consumer's shopping experience and we're seeing many retailers reexamine their rationale for selling traditional sets over versatile platforms."
Boyd's new all-steel designs will fall within the key $299 to $599 range, expanding a collection that already includes decorative steel bases in silver, brushed nickel and black, as well as solid wood versions in light and dark finishes. Offered in contemporary, metropolitan and Scandinavian styles, the series includes padded or decorative steel headboard options and attached bedside tables with certain models.
The company's most successful design, Boyd said, has been its manually adjustable Easy Adjust base. The patent-pending platform enables sleepers to enjoy the benefits of adjustable comfort at 25% of the cost of a power base, he said. The UPS-able base, which has 15 settings at the head end and requires no tools for set up, has generated a 100% close ratio among Internet retailers and an 80% placement rate among traditional stores since its January 2012 introduction, according to Boyd. Easy Adjust is also the industry's first such product that's available in a true king size, in addition to twin XL and queen sizes, the company said. The king model can be independently adjusted when adjacent twin XLs are not connected.
"Mattress stores want versatile platforms that coordinate with most furniture and represent an add-on sale," Boyd said. "Furniture outlets want decorative frames for their mattress departments and to show with their bedroom furniture. We believe bed bases are an industry 'change agent' and the best proof of that is demonstrated by Internet stores where there's no salesperson. Online mattress shopper data shows that consumers are opting for decorative, versatile platform designs over traditional sets and frames by a substantial margin."
To further demonstrate the "common sense logic" of platforms over standard sets and frames to both retailers and consumers, Boyd has developed a point-of-sale chart that compares prices of conventional sets, platform designs, the company's Easy Adjust base and wired or wireless power bases. "This matrix pricing makes it easier for retail sales associates to talk to consumers about what their options really are," Boyd said. "And because consumers like the concept of choice, it makes for a more creative and interesting shopping experience."
Boyd Specialty Sleep Introduces
a UPS-able Adjustable Base
Bedroom Magazine, January, 2012
Boyd Specialty Sleep plans to introduce a patent-pending, manually adjustable Easy Adjust™ base retailers can UPS to consumers. The new base enables sleepers to enjoy the benefits of adjustable comfort at a fraction of the cost they would pay for an electric version.
“We expect this ‘disruptive technology,’ which also represents the industry’s first UPS-shippable adjustable base, to capture a significant share of the adjustable bed base market,” said company president Dennis Boyd.
"Our objective is to supply retailers with a wide range of alternatives to conventional foundations — options that provide durable mattress support and functionality but also aesthetically pleasing products that are extremely affordable."
The innovative, manually operated, black powder-coated Easy Adjust base holds up to 2,500 pounds and has up to 15 settings at the head end. Unlike electric adjustable bases, Boyd's bases are UPS-shippable — a plus for retailers and online shoppers. "Our twin XL, queen or king bases set up in under five minutes, involve few parts and require no tools," Boyd explained. "Easy Adjust bases are also simple to understand," he said. "The user lifts the top panel next to the mattress to the desired elevation, causing a bracket to catch the nearest notch. The base is returned to a flat position by raising the mattress a few inches and re-adjusting the base panel."
According to Boyd, the Easy Adjust base is the industry's first such product available in a "true king" size, made possible with simple connectors on the panel grid under the mattresses. Independent adjustments by king sleepers are possible when the two twin XL bases are not connected. Easy Adjust bases will retail at $299, $399 and $499 for the twin XL, queen and king sizes, respectively — values that Boyd said are 60 percent less than power bases with similar functions.
"Our objective is to attract the 25- to 45-year-old market that wants a queen- or king-size bed that's adjustable, but reasonably priced. This program reaches a broader pool of shoppers who can afford the many benefits offered by adjustable sleep." Boyd's Easy Adjust products include safety features to prevent finger-pinching and other provisions that eliminate mattress slippage and "bridging." The design also provides for the attachment of a headboard or footboard using an adapter kit that also permits the mattress to be adjusted at the head without affecting the headboard.
"Offering customers the ability to purchase a mattress compatible with several different support options — a traditional foundation, a stationary platform base, an adjustable power base or a manually operated version — empowers retailers to sell the comfort of the mattress with a variety of support alternatives and functions. "This sales concept gives the consumer exciting choices in sleep function and comfort, and increases the number of ways that shoppers can perceive value."
Boyd Specialty Sleep to Roll Out
Gel Memory Foam Mattresses
David Perry — Furniture Today, December 7, 2011
Boyd Specialty Sleep is entering the fast-growing gel memory foam segment with a line of four beds that will be shown at the Las Vegas Market in January.
Boyd's new gel-infused memory foam line is called Gel Rest and is aimed at giving retailers "outstanding quality and comfort, patent-pending features and great visual appeal" at value price points that satisfy the middle market, according to President Dennis Boyd.
The collection, expected to retail from $799 to $1,299 in queen, "fills a gap that exists in the market between higher - and lower-priced memory foam or gel-foam offerings," Boyd said. The Gel Rest line aims to make available the cooling conformance benefits of today's gel-foams to the many shoppers who are neither $699 nor $2,000-plus customers, said Boyd, adding that the memory foam category is now established enough to accommodate a needed mid-price segment.
Boyd's new Gel Rest models have a 25-year limited warranty covering depressions greater than three-fourths inch and incorporate several patent-pending features that differentiate the beds from competing gel-foam products, the company said.
Each model uses up to three inches of Boyd's exclusive open-cell memory foam enhanced with Micro Tec Gel, a design that provides contouring comfort and neutralizes sleep temperature, the company said.
All of Boyd's foams are produced in sealed pressure chambers that contain virtually all volatile organic compounds, resulting in eco-conscious foam that has a more consistent cell structure and better performance than foam produced using open-air methods, the company says.
The Micro Tec Gel layer features Stay Cool channel venting in three zones - a patent-pending design that increases air flow under the body and enables heat to dissipate through the vents in the foam. "We've also placed our gel-foam layer just under the cover - not in the middle layers of the mattress - where it provides maximum heat dispersal for the sleeper," Boyd added. Gel Rest beds, which are UPS-shippable and range from eight to 13 inches high, also combine layers of Boyd's open-cell memory foams, convoluted memory foams and other high-density support foams based on the model.
Boyd will officially introduce the line at the Las Vegas Market, which opens Jan. 30. In addition to the bed collection, Boyd will present at the January market two-, three- and four-inch Gel Rest toppers made with its Micro Tec Gel-infused memory foam for conformance plus a high-density foam layer for support. The new toppers are expected to retail from $99 to $299 in queen.
Boyd Adapts and Thrives
David Perry — Furniture Today, August 3, 2011
The logo tells an impressive story of longevity: "Boyd Specialty Sleep. Since 1977."
That logo is embroidered on Denny Boyd's dress shirt this day as he sits down here to tell the story of his company, one that started as a waterbed retailer in 1977 back in the salad days of that category, and then morphed into a full-line specialty sleep retailer and producer in the decades that followed.
Now Boyd Specialty Sleep covers the gamut of specialty sleep products. Yes, waterbeds are still part of the mix, but the company long ago adapted to a changing bedding marketplace, introducing the latex and memory foam beds that are the big stars in the lineup these days.
Boyd Specialty Sleep has thrived under its founder's focused, analytical approach to the business. The producer, which manufactures here and in Los Angeles and imports some products from China, remains a shining star in the specialty sleep pantheon. The company doesn't attract the attention of some of its flashier competitors, but Boyd Specialty Sleep has a rock-solid business, selling an impressive roster of dealers that includes Wal-Mart, Target, Sam's Club, Sears, QVC, Shop NBC, HSN, Overstock.com, American Furniture Warehouse of Englewood, Colo., and Jordan's Furniture of Avon, Mass. The company is growing at a 25% clip and its sales are close to $60 million, officials say.
The architect of this success story is based in the Show Me state. Denny Boyd, once a teammate of legendary swimmer Mark Spitz, came to Missouri to swim for the University of Missouri. He did well in the pool but even better in the classroom, where he studied marketing in the business school. Now he's showing the industry how to remain vibrant in a dynamic market.
Boyd still retains the better sleep passion that the old waterbed pioneers originally brought to their category. But, like a handful of survivors from those days, he separated himself from the waterbed pack by bringing strong marketing and organizational skills to his company and broadening his sales base to reach more traditional bedding consumers.
Today, Denny Boyd oversees a diverse business empire that includes four business units. He's an innovator, holding more than 30 patents for mattress designs. "We are looking for new ideas all the time," he said. "That's what it's all about." One of his key new ideas these days is the realization that the Internet is going to change business models in the years to come. Boyd has upgraded its line so that all of its products can be shipped via UPS. Products are in-stock and ready for same-day shipping, with delivery within three days. "We don't have to build plants all across the country to get our products to our dealers," Boyd said. He says that gives Boyd's 850 dealers a big advantage: "Any retailer can be a national player," offering its customers a wide variety of specialty sleep products.
Recognizing that consumer behavior is changing in the Internet age, he's developing e-commerce sites for all of his product lines. He cites research showing that 61% of consumers shopping for mattresses will use the Internet for research or to buy. No bedding company can ignore those facts, he reasons. "It is critical for manufacturers and retailers to have an online presence and to drive traffic to their site through search engine optimization and search engine marketing," he said.
But some things don't change at Boyd Specialty Sleep. Perhaps it was too much to think that Boyd would produce innerspring beds - "dead beds," in the parlance of the old waterbed gang - but his company does make all types of specialty sleep products. "We are very tied to specialty sleep," Boyd said. "I believe there is plenty of growth in that category." Boyd is one of the few producers to offer the full spectrum of specialty sleep products, including air beds, foam beds (both memory foam and latex) and waterbeds and waterbed accessories in the Blue Magic line. The company also offers adjustable and platform bases, as well as "express beds" (guest air mattresses).
Boyd also has a strong sleep accessories program, and offers its retailers its unique Sleep Metrics program, a diagnostic selling system tied to a number of its specialty sleep lines. That system brings a scientific approach to the shopping experience, streamlines the process for consumers and retail sales associates, and boosts consumers' confidence that they are making good bedding choices. It also helps close more mattress sales, Boyd said. The system is proving its worth on the sales floors of Boyd's bedroom stores, all in the St. Louis market. He said that operating the stores gives Boyd Specialty Sleep an advantage - "We are a manufacturer that understands retail," he said. The Sleep Metrics program is available to all of Boyd's dealers, and the company also provides a full range of in-store marketing materials.
After all, Boyd Specialty Sleep has been honing its retail skills since 1977. That's a very long time in the fast-changing world of retail, one the company has navigated flawlessly with the sure hands of Denny Boyd at the helm.
Denny Boyd Embraces Five Goals, Five Values
David Perry — Furniture Today, August 3, 2011
Call it the Power of Five.
"If you can't count them on one hand," says Denny Boyd, president of Boyd Specialty Sleep, "they can't be that important." He's got five goals, five key points to his customer service star, and five core values that drive the companies he runs. And he's happy to talk about all of those five-fingered insights.
Take his goals for 2011, for example. They are:
- Innovate and get a commitment from a major customer on one new SKU.
- Increase sales by 25%.
- Reduce total inventory by 20%, while maintaining the company's 99.5% on-time shipment schedule.
- Launch a new Natural Flex latex line in July, add a website in August, and launch business-to-business ads in October.
- Hire and train two quality individuals for regional sales manager positions.
As a leader, Boyd knows that he has to set a good example for his employees, all of whom are asked to establish their own goals. The goals are shared within the company, so that everyone can encourage one another to meet their goals. Raises or bonuses are the rewards for meeting those goals. That's one of the ways that Boyd motivates his employees, and that takes us to his five-pronged customer service star. Five "P's" - people, product, promotion, performance and price - are all oriented toward the company's customers.
When it comes to people, Boyd says: "Get the best and treat them well." He has scores of long-term employees that attest to the wisdom of that philosophy, and he keeps them happy with a culture that celebrates success, welcomes new ideas, and understands the importance of having fun.
On the product side, Boyd aims to be an innovator and has more than 30 patents that attest to his success in that arena. Marketing research is emphasized; Boyd is a keen student of research and uses it to drive his company.
When it comes to promotion, he emphasizes its branding strategy, touting one of the oldest and best-known names in the specialty sleep category.
In the performance arena, Boyd is a big fan of using surveys and online reviews to make sure external customers are satisfied. For internal customers, the company relies on metrics derived from employees' top five goals. Boyd knows that what can't be measured can't be improved.
When it comes to price, the company emphasizes the strong value proposition that it says its products offer. And it aims for the sweet spots in the market, which means memory foam beds retailing from $499 to $2,499, latex beds retailing from $599 to $2,999, and airbeds retailing from $799 to $2,999.
That customer focus is a key emphasis for the company, and it takes its place as one of core values - five of them, of course - for Boyd's companies. The others are quality ("give the customer what they expect the first time and every time"), responsiveness ("timely action to a perceived need or request"), clear communication ("complete, accurate, specific information with assurance of understanding by the receiver") and reliability ("do what you say you will do").
The Power of Five is working for Boyd Specialty Sleep.
It All Began with Waterbeds and Sheets
David Perry — Furniture Today, August 3, 2011
Denny Boyd started his mattress journey with a waterbed store. That led him to begin making his own waterbed sheets, domestically first and then overseas. Then he began making waterbeds. And that led to his entry into the bedroom furniture category. And that led to more stores.
As that summary illustrates, Boyd has a strong entrepreneurial streak, one that makes him a player on both the retail and wholesale sides of the bedding business. He runs The Boyd Group, which consists of four business entities.
Boyd Specialty Sleep is the flagship business, one that is well known in its category. Products are manufactured in St. Louis and in Los Angeles, where Boyd has a 320,000- square-foot factory. There waterbeds, airbeds, memory foam mattresses and latex mattresses are produced, as is the Blue Magic line of waterbed accessories, a name that goes back to the glory days of waterbeds. He acquired the Blue Magic line in 2003. Boyd also has mattress manufacturing in China, where adjustable bases, airbed pumps, latex beds and memory foam beds are produced. He was a pioneer in looking to China for manufacturing, making his first trip there in the early 1980s, long before others saw the potential for Far East production. And he still travels to China and other countries in the Far East today.
Boyd's customer base is a who's who of major retailers, including Wal-Mart, Target, Sam's Club and Sears, to name just a few of the company's 850 dealers.
The Bedroom Store, which launched Denny Boyd into the bedding arena in 1977. He started as Royal Waterbeds, rode the waterbed wave to a high-water mark of 33 stores, and then retrenched to become a more mainstream retailer in 1998 under the current name. Today he operates six stores in the St. Louis market, selling bedroom furniture and a full line of mattresses. His major vendors include his own Boyd lines; Accent Furniture, his bedroom line; Serta, Tempur-Pedic, Corsicana, Ashley and Broyhill. Boyd says The Bedroom Store, which helps him keep his finger on the pulse of retail, will remain focused on the St. Louis market.
Accent Furniture. This business started in 1992 as a domestic wood furniture manufacturer, but now operates out of the Far East, making bedroom groups in Malaysia and Vietnam. Major customers include Costco, Sam's Club and traditional furniture stores.
Boyd Properties, the company's real estate arm. Boyd created the business to handle property purchases for Boyd, Accent Furniture and The Bedroom Store. The real estate portfolio consists of the Los Angeles factory and five buildings in the St. Louis market (his headquarters/ factory facility and four of his retail stores), together comprising 500,000 square feet. Two of his stores in St. Louis are leased. Boyd admits that in this real estate-friendly climate he's searching for additional properties in the St. Louis area. "We are looking," he said. "We need to fill out this market."
Boyd Specialty Sleep offers its first
mattress toppers. Three models feature
memory foam options.
David Perry — Furniture Today, June 7, 2011
ST. LOUIS — Boyd Specialty Sleep is introducing its first-ever mattress topper program featuring three memory foam options in response to what the company says is stepped-up demand from retailers.
The new Boyd Responda-Flex toppers - in two-, three- and four-inch heights - incorporate either solid memory foam or a combination of convoluted memory foam for contouring support, plus a firmer secondary foam layer for extra support, said Denny Boyd, CEO of Boyd Specialty Sleep. Priced to retail from $99 to $399 in queen-size, the toppers feature off-white covers that are removable and machine-washable.
"The vast majority of toppers sold today are uncovered blocks or slabs of foam," Boyd said. "Our objective was to differentiate and elevate the quality and look of our offerings, which is why Responda-Flex toppers are aesthetically styled, have a lifestyle-based selling story and include attractive POP materials."
The three- and two-inch products feature convoluted memory foam layers under either a velour cover or a 300 thread count natural cotton/polyester fabric, respectively. The four-inch topper is a solid, non-convoluted memory foam layer covered in a bamboo-based rayon fabric. The entire topper collection uses various densities of Boyd's open-celled memory foam, called Responda-Flex, which is highly permeable, breathable and temperature sensitive, the company said.
Boyd, who said his company will offer the new program to retailers nationwide, said the topper demand has increased significantly during the economic downturn. "For many consumers who can't afford to buy a new bed and are seeking a better night's sleep, the plushness and support of a properly constructed topper can mitigate the declining support in a mattress that's nearing the end of its lifecycle," he said.
"Toppers also help eliminate mattress returns, particularly if a new bed is perceived as too firm. The retail salesperson can then provide a topper that delivers pressure support to the body, creating increased comfort for the sleeper."
Boyd Launches New Planet Sleep™ Line With Superior Memory Foam Design, Performance and Ultra Premium Retail Presentation
Specialty Sleep Association — sleepinformation.org,
March 7, 2011
Boyd Specialty Sleep is introducing a new, three-model Planet Sleep™ memory foam collection aimed at giving select retailers an exclusive combination of benefits: Superior memory foam applications and comfort feels, a high-end in-store presentation, plus high profit opportunities.
According to company president Dennis Boyd, premium Planet Sleep beds are not only exceptionally comfortable, but like other Boyd sleep products, are also highly eco-friendly in their design and manufacture.
"We believe this specialty line delivers the 'complete package' to retailers who want luxury memory foam products that are demonstrably different," he said. These beds incorporate from four to seven inches of our exclusive open-cell memory foam layers, feature densities of up to seven pounds and total mattress profiles of up to 13 inches. A standout in-store presentation details the unique quality, comfort and contouring support that Planet Sleep beds provide, while promoting their environmentally-conscious design and production.
Expected to retail from $1,299 to $1,999 in queen, the top-of-the-line Planet Sleep model uses three layers of memory foam atop a high-density foam support base. The top inch of memory foam lies beneath an anti-microbial bamboo-pattern cover of 100% rayon. The fabric is made from sustainable bamboo fiber, known for its moisture control ability. The middle model has five inches of memory foam, including Boyd's patent-pending, channel-vented Stay-Cool™ layer. The Stay Cool memory foam is tri-zoned for enhanced lumbar support, improved air circulation and heat dissipation for the sleeper. Enhancing the performance of the Stay-Cool layer and the entire bed is a patent-pending FoamSpring™ Support System at the base, which also is tri-zoned and channel-vented. "Like the top number, this Planet Sleep model also includes memory foam just beneath the same eco-friendly rayon-bamboo cover," Boyd noted. The starting model in the collection — also featured in the same fabric — incorporates both solid and Stay-Cool memory foam layers atop the company's FoamSpring support base. All of the beds use open-celled memory foam "which spreads — rather than traps — air pressure, providing superior comfort, contouring support and a cooler sleep surface," according to Boyd.
To effectively promote the new Planet Sleep line, the company has created a comprehensive POS program that includes matching headboards and foot protectors — both with information inserts — plus coordinated pillows, all executed in a rich, textured suede look. The program includes a mini-mattress display that helps retail sales associates explain the features and benefits of Planet Sleep mattresses.
"The ultra premium feel and performance of this line, combined with the quality in-store presentation materials we have to support it, clearly deliver the brand message we want for Planet Sleep," Boyd said. The beds, which carry a 20-year limited warranty, also have earned Level I Seal /Tags of the Specialty Sleep Association (SSA) Environmental and Safety Consumer Education Program, as well as other environmental awards. One such award is for the company's "green" foam manufacturing process. Boyd's foam is produced in a sealed chamber that uses air pressure rather than chemicals to control the foam's properties and ultimate performance. As a result of this procedure, harmful emissions like VOCs (Volatile Organic Compounds) are contained and prevented from entering the atmosphere.
Boyd Specialty Sleep was founded in 1977 by Denny Boyd and dedicates itself to quality, innovation and excellence in a wide range of highly diversified specialty sleep products. The company has earned more than 30 patents for its innovations and is strategically focused on the health and safety of consumers, and on the environmental impact of its products.
The Specialty Sleep Association Introduces its Environmental and Safety Program
Specialty Sleep Association — sleepinformation.org, January, 2011
SSA Environmental & Safety Program is an outgrowth of the initial SSA “Green Initiative”. It has three levels of compliance and will promote consumer education on environmental attributes of mattresses and awareness of compliance with federal flame resistance and children’s safety issues.
The Specialty Sleep Association (SSA) "THE FUTURE OF SLEEP™ is dedicated to providing consumers with pertinent information to help them make the best mattress and bedding decisions for themselves and their loved ones.
The SSA Environmental & Safety Program for consumer education, retailer training and truth in "green" marketing is the SSA's most recent consumer outreach.
In its January 2010 Environmental Claims Report, the SSA's consumer research study found that 41% of consumers worry about the safety of mattresses in their homes and 15% of consumers want "emissions-free" mattresses. These two issues were consumers' top two concerns.
79% of consumers surveyed stated they would choose a mattress with an environmentally friendly claim that they could understand and trust to be complete and truthful. In response to this study and several other worldwide indicators, the SSA is developing this Environmental & Safety Program to address environmental truth in marketing. On this website consumers can see the industry's top manufacturers and follow links right into the manufacturer website, for up-to-date information on a diverse spectrum of sleep products and the newest innovations in sleep technology.
SSA Environmental & Safety Program. Introduction.
The SSA Environmental & Safety Program provides a three-step seal and consumer disclosure label (CDL) program that will help consumers to understand the environmental and safety attributes of participating manufacturers' products. The seals and labels appear on mattresses from manufacturers who join the program and serve to inform the consumer about the minimum environmental and safety compliance levels the particular product adheres to, along with a CDL that lists material content by percentage for components in the mattress.
For more information and to view the seal CLICK HERE.
To display the Level I seal, a manufacturer must:
- Disclose materials used in construction and percentages of natural/biobased and/or recycled content if applicable
- Achieve a minimum of 20% of natural/biobased or pre-consumer recycled content in component categories of fabric and quilt
- Participate in an annual survey to identify carbon footprint issues and commit to continuous improvement
- Meet all federal safety flammability requirements
- Meet all safety requirements for children's products if applicable
- Provide a warranty for the product
For the Level II seal, a manufacturer must meet all the requirements of the first threshold and in addition, the products must:
- Disclose materials used in construction and achieve a minimum of 20% of natural/biobased and/or recycled content material in each component category: fabric, quilt, and core
- Certify that the top fabric (closest to consumer during sleep) contains no harmful substances through either Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 or Global Organic Textile Standard
- Polyurethane foam products much achieve CertiPUR®-US certification
- Latex foam products must achieve Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 certification.
The Level III seal is the highest that can be achieved. To meet the Level III requirements, a manufacturer must comply with the previous two levels' requirements and:
- Disclose materials used in construction and achieve a minimum of 70% of natural/biobased material in component categories of fabric and quilt
- Disclose materials used in construction and achieve a minimum of 50% natural/biobased, pre-consumer recycled and/or recycled steel for core
- Certify that the final mattress contains no harmful substances as certified by Oeko-Tex® Standard 100 or Global Organic Textile Standard
- Test the mattress for VOCs emissions
The Specialty Sleep Association Environmental & Safety Program Board of Governors includes:
- CHAIRMAN: Ralph Rossdeutscher, President and CEO
- Denny Boyd, President, Boyd Specialty Sleep
- Barry Cik, President, Naturepedic
- Roger Coffey, President, Latexco West/Sleep Comp West
- Bart DeHaerne, President, Deslee Textiles, USA & Chair, Specialty Sleep Association
- Jack Eppolito, Manager, Reverie
- Scott Frisch, Sales/Merchandising Manager of Specialty Fabrics Division, Springs Creative
- Anne Kozel, Specialty Sleep Brand Director, Simmons
- Mark Larusso, Vice President, Jeffco Fibres
- Kenny Oliver, President, Jones Fiber Company
- Michael Nermon, President, Ergo Customized Comfort
- Mark Quinn, Director of Marketing for the Residential Furnishings Segment, Leggett & Platt
- Dale Read, Ex-official member, President, Specialty Sleep Association
- Michael Rothboard, President and CEO, Sleep Studio
- Kevin Stein, Vice President Marketing/R&D, Latex International
- Umberto Torresan, North American Marketing Manager for Furniture and Bedding, Dow Polyurethanes
SSA is also pleased to recognize the following individuals and organizations that supported the development of the Environmental & Safety Program through information sharing, reviews/critiques, and by providing additional resources. Special thanks for the strong support from Dow in support of consumer education.
Randy Carter, Steelcase; Greg Crawford, Steel Recycling Institute; Michael Deese, Howe & Hutton, Ltd.; Susan Ebaugh, Lilly Management Group; David Farley & Jeff Scorziell, Anatomic Global; Al Hodgson & Raja Tannous, Berkeley Analytical; Josh Jacobs, GREENGUARD Environmental Institute; Bob Luedeka, Polyurethane Foam Association; Joanne Mattiase, Law Office of Joanne E. Mattiase; Susan Inglis, Sustainable Furnishings Council; Kate Lewis & Ron Buckhalt, USDA's BioPreferred Program; Sam Moore & Dana Dunn, Hohenstein Institutes; Reinhard Oppl, Eurofins; Ryan Trainer, President, International Sleep Products Association; Dwayne Welch, Hickory Springs Manufacturing Co.; Don Wright, Wright Labels.
Additional Information & Resources
Boyd adopts SSA's safety, green guides
Denny Boyd — Furniture Today, September 13, 2010
ST. LOUIS - Boyd Specialty Sleep has become the first U.S. mattress manufacturer to adopt the new safety and environmental standards created by the Specialty Sleep Assn. to help consumers better understand what is inside their mattresses.
Boyd is placing the SSA Safety & Environmental Program seal on its NaturalFlex latex mattresses and its PlanetSleep visco-memory foam mattresses. The mattresses are expected to be on retailers' floors in the next few weeks.
The Boyd mattresses in the program display the group's Level I seal, which means the company has met all federal safety flammability requirements; provided a warrantee for the product; met all safety requirements for children's products if applicable; disclosed material construction with a descriptive label content; will participate in an annual survey to identify carbon footprint issues and has committed to continuous improvement; and met standards set by the Montreal Protocol Act when applicable, for reduction or elimination of ozone depleting substances.
"The seal empowers consumers to see what a manufacturer is doing to actively assure the safety and environmental friendliness of their products." - Denny Boyd, Boyd Specialty Sleep.
"The SSA's SEP seal is a real breakthrough for the consumer and empowers them to see what a manufacturer is doing to actively assure the safety and environmental friendliness of their products," said Denny Boyd, president of Boyd Specialty Sleep. "The retail response we saw a few weeks ago in Las Vegas to our products carrying the seal exceeded our expectations and I believe is a further indication that the SSA has really solved one of the great challenges our industry has faced in recent memory by finding a way to bring us all together around the issue of safety and environmental sensitivity to the products we sell."
SSA launches safety, environmental mattress seal. Hopes to educate consumers about sleep set components.
David Perry — Furniture Today, August 4, 2010
AT THE MARKET — The Specialty Sleep Assn. is launching a safety and environmental mattress seal and label program designed to better educate consumers about the components in their sleep sets. The program, developed after more than a year of research and work, features mattress labels and seals on beds made by participating manufacturers.
Manufacturers pay a fee to the SSA to use the label and seal, which inform the consumer about the minimum environmental and safety compliance levels the mattress meets. Consumers who want more information can go to the SSA's website for additional details.
The SSA, an industry group based in Friant, Calif., shows here in World Market Center C-1350.
"Purchasing safe and environmentally friendly products is an overwhelming concern of consumers," said Dale Read, SSA president. "The Safety and Environmental Program represents the best way to finally deliver a clear message, through a revolutionary new label and education program, that the bedding industry is listening to that concern. The SSA is proud to have taken a leadership role in this important task of creating clarity in defining the broad terms being used to define environmentally friendly products as part of our ongoing mission to promote natural, healthier and safer sleep solutions for consumers."
There are two levels in the seal and label program.
To display the Level I seal, a manufacturer must meet all federal safety flammability requirements, provide a warranty for the product, meet all safety requirements for children's products if applicable, disclose material construction on a label, participate in an annual survey to identify carbon footprint issues, and meet standards set by the Montreal Protocol Act, when applicable, for the reduction or elimination of ozone-depleting substances.
The Level II seal requires all the above, and also that the manufacturer meet the standards in California Section 1350 testing for low VOC emissions, and to validate that the mattress's textile covering contains no harmful substances.
The SSA said several manufacturers have signed on and are displaying mattresses in compliance with the program here this week, although it did not name the manufacturers.
Read said the new seal and label program "is all about transparency and education. It represents a unification of suppliers, manufacturers and retailers around a set of environmental terms and definitions that will reduce confusion and bolster sales to consumers anxious to purchase environmentally friendly products."
He said the seal will "provide an industry standard for what is green, sustainable and natural," and will also give retail sales associates the opportunity to discuss mattress safety issues with consumers.
Top 10 reasons for specialty sleep
By Denny Boyd — Furniture Today, July 28, 2002
Savvy consumers, from Baby Boomers to Generation Y and generations in between, are increasingly committed to health and wellness. As a result, they are looking for new, better and more innovative ways to improve their sleep.
Specialty sleep products — most notably air, flotation, latex, foam and adjustable sleep surfaces — offer manufacturers and retailers a great opportunity to meet the need of this growing market segment.
Consider the following:
1. Increases total bedding sales and protects innerspring sales. Specialty bedding does not steal innerspring sales. In each case where Boyd Specialty Sleep has implemented a specialty sleep program, innerspring sales continue to increase at the same rate, while specialty sleep adds incremental sales.
2. Attracts an interested consumer. Thanks to the national advertising of major direct marketers, many consumers have heard about specialty sleep as an alternative to innerspring. In fact, a recent study done by America's Research Group indicated that more than 28% of consumers felt that advertising for specialty sleep mattresses was "the most influential" or "very influential" in deciding where to shop for their next mattress.
3. Yields high profit dollars. Since a small proportion of retailers commit to the specialty sleep category in any given marketplace, you have the ability to "own" your market. This can yield high profit dollars because of the 50% margin that is typical for specialty sleep products.
4. Caters to the ultra-premium segment. Specialty sleep is not promotional bedding with high unit volumes and little profit dollars. Specialty sleep consumers usually have higher household income, higher education levels and greater disposable income than the average shopper.
5. Addresses the major portion of the bedding business. Estimates of the market share for specialty sleep range between 10% and 22% of consumer dollars spent on mattresses. Assuming a reasonable 14% of the $7.6 billion bedding industry, specialty sleep represents nearly $1.7 billion in annual U.S. sales.
6. Encourages increased closing ratios. In each market, there are relatively few retail locations where the consumer can "test rest" a specialty sleep mattress. If you carry and promote a full range of mattress options, there is a good chance the consumer will shop your store first and have no reason to go elsewhere.
7. Enjoys a 'premium' image. Consumers are aware that the cost of memory foam, latex, air and flotation mattresses is generally in excess of $1,000 in queen size. The value of specialty sleep is also apparent, with a feel and support structure that is not found in innerspring mattresses.
8. Is a master bedroom purchase. Ninety percent of specialty bedding sales are in king and queen sizes, making the average unit selling price dramatically higher for specialty bedding than for other sleep surfaces … and encouraging interest in sales of master bedroom furniture.
9. Offers customized comfort for better health. If there is one word that describes specialty sleep it is comfort. Whether the support system is air, foam or water the selling story remains essentially the same: By contouring to your body and thereby reducing pressure points, overall support is increased which allows for a long, uninterrupted, efficient night's sleep. This all adds up to better health.
10. Adds more excitement to the bedding category. Do your customers have fun shopping for a mattress? Specialty sleep mattresses are interesting and unique. They compel the shopper to lie down on them and find out more. This helps break down the communication barrier between the salesperson and the customer, making the shopping experience a positive one.