The bedding industry of Bangladesh is flourishing substantially. Currently running 30 big companies have invested around Tk500 crore in making their way into the sector.
The foam and mattress market has been growing by 20 per cent per annum, the companies claimed.
Major local corporate companies such as – Pran-RFL, Apex, Swan, Karmo, Bengal, Expo Group, Akhter, EuroAsia, HomeTex, Classical Home, and Zaber & Zubair Fabrics are also significantly contributing to the sector.
They are now enriching their service by introducing modern and medical bedding products such as foam, mattresses, fibre pillows, blankets and comforters.
Over the last several decades, around 50 companies have made their way into the bedding sector. Still, their invested capital is yet too little to cash in on the market potentials and diversification.
The annual market for bedding products such as the duvet, pillow, comforter, blanket, bedsheet, foam, and others amount to around Tk8,000 crore.
Small entrepreneurs mostly dominate the market. On the contrary, the intro of the big corporates into the sector are creating potentiality and diversification. Customers can choose between branded and non-branded bedding products according to their choices and preferences.
Besides, the demand for fancy bedding items increases, leading to a change in consumer behavior due to the new middle class’s rise. Also, the down price of high-end bedding products is enticing the customer.
The demand for fancy bedding items continues to go up in the country with a rise of the new middle-class, leading to a change in consumer behaviour. Besides, a markdown in prices of high-end bedding products is also attracting more customers.
The Pran-RFL Group produces foam, mattresses, different types of pillows, comforter, katha, baby set, and mosquito net. In 2016, they started on a limited scale. Now, they’re thinking of investing more as its sales growing more than 20% a year.
Kamruzzaman Kamal, director (marketing) at Pran-RFL, said there are 30 corporate houses in the country, but only Tk300-350 crore worth of products are sold annually. According to him, branded companies have ample opportunity to grab the market, which is now mainly under the informal sector.
Apart from the Pran-RFL Group, corporates such as Expo Group, Akhter, Dhaka Foam, and National Foam have recently invested in the sector.
Dollie, Feather, I-sleep, and Mayfair Kay are some of the foreign names doing business in the country’s market.
Mattress imports have stopped as well as its domestic market has also become much more prominent since EuroAsia went into production, Subrata Kumar, head of corporate at EuroAsia, stated.
In Dhaka’s Nilkhet, adjacent to New Market, there is a large bedding market with about 35 shops selling bedding products at wholesale and retail rates. Mattresses, pillows, bedcovers, pillow covers, curtains, and mosquito nets are sold there, but most are non-branded products. Most of the products there are made locally.
Point to be noted that, though mattress selling successfully came out of import dependency, the blanket sector still depends on importation.
According to the market source, blankets worth Tk2,500-Tk3,000 crore are sold in the local market every year, where domestic textile companies produce blankets worth around Tk1,000 crore. At the same time, imports from South Korea, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey, and China meet the remaining market demand.
Mohammad Siddiqur Rahman, vice-president of the Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce & Industries (FBCCI), told The Business Standard, there were no large bedding companies since few people had access to high-end products.
“But brands are being developed now as the market is changing. People are also opting for branded bedding products,” he added, speaking about the emergence of market potentials.