Our View: Welcome to the Furniture Capital
It’s a good thing the spring 2014 High Point Market began this weekend and not the first weekend in March. Most everyone is getting along and getting around much easier today as the market enters its second official day.
A month ago — the first weekend in March — greater High Point was in the throes of the worst winter storm to hit the area in more than a decade. Much of city and the surrounding area, which is home to an extra 70,000 or so people this week, was without electricity because of downed power lines caused by fallen, ice-coated trees and limbs.
Utility and public services crews have been working diligently for the last month to clean up trees, limbs and other storm debris. They have done a tremendous job getting the downtown market district and neighborhoods throughout the city and surrounding area, where many market attendees stay in private homes, ready for the arrival of our market friends.
No weather woes are expected this week as spring seems finally to have made its way to the Piedmont Triad and North Carolina. So, we say welcome to another edition of the High Point Market in the Furniture Capital of the World.
This market unfolds as the U.S. economy continues to make steps forward in recovery from the economic doldrums of a few years ago. Barring unseen catastrophic events, a number of industry analysts and insiders see continued improvements in the home furnishings industry generally and specifically the $5.39-billion economic impact High Point Market.
For example, Bob Maricich, CEO of International Market Centers, which owns and operates approximately two-thirds of the showroom space at the market, recently told a High Point audience that he sees continued growth in the industry nationally and in the High Point Market. However, he suggested continued refinements — some a bit controversial — in how the market operates.
But those suggestions by Maricich are discussions for another time. As for this week, the focus is on what the industry is offering the buying public now. That’s why 70,000 visitors from around the world are here this week.
And we are glad to see you.