Ethan Allen CEO Farooq Kathwari told CNBC on Tuesday that the company expects its production delays to return early next year following a series of pandemic-induced supply problems.
“One of the advantages we have is that first of all, you know, we have the right kind of product lines. And then secondly, we have the opportunity to combine the personal service of about 1,500 interior designers with the technology … Having said that, they are also affected by service issues, ”Kathwari said in“ Power Lunch ”.
“We’ve made improvements,” he said. “We’re very backward, but I think in the next four to six months we’ll be back.”
Kathwari said the manufacturer and retailer of interior design hope to return to their “normal” pace of being able to make custom products in less than eight weeks, instead of their current pace of 12 to 16 weeks or more.
Ethan Allen produces custom products, while most of the furniture industry relies on its stock products, he said, adding that 75% of Ethan Allen items are made in North America. North. The company sells furniture and decorative products for the home online and through about 300 design centers in the United States and abroad.
Kathwari said the company sees “record sales” as consumer interest in homes grows by the end of the summer season. He said Ethan Allen has closed more than 250 of its locations and laid off more than 4,000 employees when the pandemic hit the United States early last year.
Kathwari said current service problems include delays in textiles and raw materials such as foam and wood. He said the company has been affected by a myriad of problems, including severe storms at its Texas plants, which has delayed the production of foam used in upholstery and sofas, and an initial shortage of workers at its original Vermont plant. .
“Customization is tremendously important. It’s been a challenge but it’s become an opportunity with the participation of our internal designers, with the participation of technology, and the fact that … we’ve been here, and today is a big advantage. ”said Kathwari on maintaining his business in the United States
Effective Monday, Ethan Allen will also change his ticker symbol from “ETH” to “ETD” to avoid confusion with Ethereum news in search results, according to an Aug. 4 issue. press release. Kathwari said the change to the letter “D” reflects the company’s focus on the concept.