Luxury fabric specialist, Kobe UK, is celebrating 20 years of supplying UK interior design and soft furnishing customers with its contemporary and classic collections.
The company, now known for such iconic collections as City Chic, Brissac and Aurora, began in 1995 when Kobe UK became a wholly owned subsidiary of the Dutch textiles group, Kobefab International. Since then the business has gone from strength to strength.
“There have been many milestones along the way, but today the company is an established brand in the UK, growing from a very small team to now covering the whole country,” says MD David Harris, who has been at the helm of the UK operation for the full two decades.
In 1998 the company took over distribution in Ireland and a few years later established its successful contract sales division. Kobe’s contract fabrics are used to complete major projects from around the world, including the hospitality and healthcare markets.
Supporting the business going forward has been a priority and it has continued to reinforce its contracts team and its sales team, which now operates throughout the UK and Ireland.
However it has not always been good news. In 2010 disaster struck when a fire swept through the company’s head office in Holland. Fortunately a quick thinking team working at the site hurriedly setup a temporary warehouse, which meant for its significant customer base, business carried on as usual.
“It’s been an exciting and sometimes challenging 20 years but we wouldn’t have it any other way," says David. "The company has developed considerably, we have a great team, business is still growing and we are looking forward to the next 20 years. I even have my own 50 year milestone this year!”
Having moved from its beginnings in temporary accommodation on to its Woodley premises, the company is now settled at its headquarters in Crowthorne, Berkshire.
Kobe UK will be showcasing it’s latest collections at Stand J22 at Decorex International in September, the Independent Hotel Show in October, the Sleep Show in November 2015 and the January Furniture Show 2016.