Silentnight hunts agency for furniture brand drive

Silentnight Group has kicked off a search for a PR agency to promote furniture brands such as Stag and Parker Knoll.

Five agencies have been shortlisted but have not yet pitched for the account.

Incumbent agency Parker Hobart Associates said it had declined to repitch and described the decision to bring its relationship with the company to an end as ‘mutual’.

Silentnight Group Furniture Brands marketing director Peter Williams said the agency-hiring process was at the ‘chemistry-meeting stage’.

The group is believed to be about to launch several further furniture ranges to complement its current cabinet and upholstery brands.

SGFB recently suffered from adverse regional publicity after it announced it would close its Parker Knoll factory in Chipping Norton, Oxfordshire, this December.

Group CEO Nino Allenza last month publicly admitted consumers had suffered ‘difficulties’ from recent changes to the company but said her top priority was to demonstrate ‘excellence’ in customer service.

The PR review comes nearly a year after the furniture division announced a fall in turnover of £3.4m for the six months ending August 2003, compared to the same period during 2002.

Silentnight Group, previously a plc, was taken into private ownership in late 2003 by Soundersleep Limited, which revamped its senior management team.

Sinclair Mason’s remit to promote Silentnight Beds remains unaffected by the furniture pitch. The agency landed that account in June last year and was reappointed earlier this year.

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