How do you think the way of selling and maintaining contacts will change?
Interestingly enough, during the lockdown we received a lot of inquiries from clients and members of the trade, which we believe was due to spending more time on social media. We feel social media is key during these times in keeping our customer base updated with new collections and future events. We have had an increase in quotation requests and sales, which leads us to believe that our sector will recover from this downturn. But it all depends on the global economic recovery. Since we reopened, we are following the government mandates along with CDC recommendations as we implement new procedures to insure the health and safety of our clients and staff.
What is the furniture market like in Jeddah?
The lockdown has certainly affected our lives in so many ways. UDG Design Gallery is a luxury multi brand showroom, where 70% of our sales are project based and since the lockdown most industries have placed projects on hold. Therefore, we did see a substantial drop in orders being filled as well as our consumer sales. We found that some of our clients have postponed purchasing decisions due to the uncertainty of the economy.
The furniture market here in the kingdom is basically divided into three segments. First, we have the local produced products that cater to lower income families which is roughly 35% of the market value. Second, we have imported products from countries such as Sweden, Turkey and China, just to name a few. These companies cater to the middle-income families which are 60% of the market value. And finally, we have the luxury brand market which is approximately 5% to 7%.
Who are your customers and what are your next projects?
UDG Design Gallery has both residential and trade consumers. However, Our Design Studio, which is within the showroom, is currently working on several projects including a private villa located in Europe. Our main objective is staying safe and positive during this health crisis whilst supporting our client’s needs.