National Buying Group Furniture First recently promoted two of its merchandising directors to Vice President positions.
Brian Hass has been promoted to Vice President of Merchandising. In this position, he will be overseeing the merchandising staff in the case goods, upholstery, and accessories categories. He will also focus on developing case goods, area rug, and outdoor furniture programs.
Brian Hass joined Furniture First in 2013, bringing more than twenty years of experience in the furnishings industry. He began his career as store manager for Just Cabinets when the Pennsylvania kitchen and cabinet retailer had just four stores. As the business grew he was promoted to Buyer, and ultimately became Vice President. In this role, Brian helped the chain to grow to 21 storefronts, overseeing broad aspects of the business including merchandising, product sourcing, advertising, and logistics management. During his tenure he helped this case goods retailer grow its merchandise mix by adding categories including mattresses, upholstery, electronics, and appliances.
Andrew Kauffman is now Furniture First’s Vice President of Sleep Products & Markets. In addition to managing the mattress programs, top of bed programs, and the Mattress 1st Store Concept, he will also be in charge of Market planning and showroom events.
When Andrew Kauffman came to Furniture First in 2011, he brought more than twenty years of experience in the furniture industry. He began his furniture career delivering mattresses for a Pennsylvania sleep shop with 5 locations. He worked his way up to Store Manager and eventually became Sales Manager. In 1999 he joined a two-store furniture retailer as a Sales Manager and helped institute new sales training guides for mattresses and upholstery. In 2009 he took over as Operations Manager and Assistant Buyer.
The long experience in multi-store retail environments that both new Vice Presidents possess translates into an advantage for buying group members. Understanding the challenges faced by independent retailers, they use their expertise to develop product lines and negotiate with vendors to build the best programs for the membership.
This organization of responsibilities will allow existing team members, including Senior Director of Merchandising & Membership Ron Page and Director of Upholstery & Home Décor Liz McGoldrick, to focus in more depth on new membership and core merchandise categories – case goods and upholstery, respectively.