Culp just wants to keep on ticking. The company is one of the world's largest makers of furniture upholstery fabrics and mattress fabrics (known as ticking). Culp delivers fashion-conscious, stylish fabrics with broad appeal to some of the largest home furnishing retailers and manufacturers. Its upholstery fabrics include wovens (jacquards and dobbies), knits, screen-prints, and velvets (woven and tufted). Its fabrics are used in upholstering residential and commercial furniture such as recliners, sofas, and love seats. Culp's ticking is used for covering mattresses and box springs. US customers account for nearly 80% of sales.
Culp has manufacturing plants and distribution facilities in the US, Canada, China, and Poland.
Sales and Marketing
Major customers include furniture makers La-Z-Boy, Bassett, and Furniture Brands International, as well as mattress makers Sealy and Serta.
Culp reported a 17.4% increase in revenues in fiscal 2012 thanks to improved industry demand.
Despite the increase in net sales, net income dropped by 18% in FY 2012 because of an increase in raw material costs in the mattress fabrics and upholstery fabrics segments and higher selling, general, and administrative expenses.
The company's strategy includes investing heavily in its mattress fabric business, restructuring its upholstery fabrics business to be more competitive, and expanding in Europe.
One of the keys to Culp's success has been the shift of manufacturing activities from North America to China and Europe. It is continuing to expand manufacturing facilities in China, where the company has operated since 2004. Chinese-made upholstery fabrics accounted for 85% of this segment sales in 2010 and 2011.
Culp is also diversifying its distribution network. In 2012 the company opened a distribution warehouse-cum-manufacturing location in Poznan, Poland, marking Culp's first entry into the European market. Culp has targeted Europe as its second largest sales territory outside the US.
Chairman Robert G. Culp III (son of the founder) owns about 17% of the company; Scott Asen and related entities, 12.5%. – less