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Soft-Tex gains brand name in Ther-A-Pedic

Looking to leverage the strength of an established brand name, basic bedding supplier Soft-Tex Manufacturing announced a licensing agreement with Ther-A-Pedic International last week.

Known for its basic bedding utilizing feathers, down, synthetics and foam, Soft-Tex unveiled the scope of the line during last month's New York Home Textiles Market at its 303 Fifth Ave. showroom. The line encompasses bed pillows, fiber and feather beds and mattress pads and toppers in a variety of price points, all branded with the Ther-A-Pedic logo.

Ther-A-Pedic is a manufacturer of patented and box spring mattresses. The company is based in North Brunswick, NJ. Soft-Tex is a supplier of private label products to both catalogs and department stores.

"We've never been brand-oriented, and brands are very important with home textiles these days," Arthur Perry, president of Soft-Tex, told Home Textiles Today. "We've been looking for a brand, and Ther-A-Pedic fit our bill.

"The name will be recognized by consumers to mean quality bedding."

The initial offering of pillows encompasses a good, better, best strategy. The "good" offering features Soft-Tex's Soft-loft, a spiral shaped polyester fill, with a polyester/cotton blend cover and a retail price point of $6.99. The mid-tier offering comes with a 200-count Egyptian cotton cover and with spiral siliconized fill to retail for approximately $10.99. Topping the line is the "best" offering, a down alternative fill made from microfiber, labeled Foreverloft, for $14.99. All three are hypo-allergenic and machine washable and dryable. In addition, a visco-elastic foam and a latex pillow are also planned, as are a large selection of specialty shaped pillows, such as a cervical neck pillow.

"In today's marketplace, it is essential that we as manufacturers bring to the table everything we possibly can to make business easier for our retailers," said Michael Pino, president of Ther-A-Pedic International. "With Soft-Tex Manufacturing's alliance, we have created a program for retail and furniture stores to complement their bedding sales with a quality product at competitive prices that will bring in important additional revenue for the store."

According to Perry, the response from retailers during market was "very strong," and the company expects to have orders to fill as soon as packaging for the line is complete. Soft-Tex, Perry also said, will be ready to ship products by Jan. 1.

The merchandising program is set up as a self-serve display for the retailer's selling floor, designed to create an impulse sale as consumers browse through the store.

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