A Dallas luxury furniture and textiles producer is expanding its manufacturing facility in San Luis Potosí, Mexico, doubling the size of the plant and creating 100 full-time jobs.
Perennials and Sutherland has been in Mexico since 2006, when it purchased a warehouse in Toluca, Mexico, to store raw materials and samples. The factory in San Luis de Potosí, which currently employs 250 workers, was built in 2012 to combine storage and production in a single factory.
The expansion will help Perennials Fabric and Rugs increase production by 30% to keep pace with the expanding business footprint. The work is expected to be completed in early 2022.
Perennials and Sutherland is the parent company of Ann and David Sutherland’s three brands: Perennials Fabric and Rugs, Sutherland Furniture and David Sutherland Showrooms. Perennials and Sutherland sells primarily to industry customers such as interior designers and architects, but also markets some of its products directly to consumers through retailers such as Restoration Hardware, with which it has partnered for since 2010, and Serena & Lily.
The Sutherlands popularized the notion that outdoor furniture should look as good as indoor furniture, developing the concept of “outdoor rooms” and insisting that outdoor furniture is more than just a piece of furniture. thought after the fact.
In the 1990s, David Sutherland and the couple’s business partner, famous furniture designer John Hutton, struggled to find a luxurious fabric to incorporate into their outdoor furniture designs, which deviated from more functional designs. that previously dominated the market.
As a solution, Ann Sutherland developed Perennials in 1997, a solution-dyed acrylic fiber fabric that resists fading and staining, allowing designers to easily incorporate colors and patterns into outdoor furniture designs. The creation of Vivaces spurred the development of several other “high performance” fabrics, which have now become equally popular for indoor use as customers seek more durable products.
As Perennials grew, she worked with several factories in Mexico near San Luis Potosí, an area famous for its artisans, to produce her fabrics.
When a factory owner Perennials had contracted with in the past told Ann Sutherland he was shutting down his business, she offered to buy the looms from him. Perennials started their own weaving operation in a rented space, using the looms and several employees of the shutter factory. As the operation grew, it moved to the industrial park where the perennial plant is now located.
Despite the limitations of the COVID-19 pandemic, Ann Sutherland said the company has not slowed down. At the start of the pandemic, the perennial plant turned to making masks, keeping the plant open. Sutherland was initially reluctant to expand the facility, due to the continuing pandemic and pressure on global supply chains, but demand from buyers stuck at home has grown too great to ignore.
As the company focuses on its business clients, retail clients carried the business through the early part of the pandemic as the design industry slowed down to scale from in-person to virtual business .
“We just couldn’t produce fast enough,” Sutherland said of retail demand.
Offers include Perennials fabric gingham pillows, sold for $ 148 each at Serena & Lily, a striped rug at Williams-Sonoma for $ 1,795, and an outdoor sofa designed by David Sutherland available for $ 3,195 at Restoration Hardware. .
The expansion of the San Luis Potosí facilities comes as Perennials and Sutherland aim to capitalize on increased demand around the world. In 2019, the company partnered with California-based private equity firm Bertram Capital. Bertram acquired a controlling stake in Perennials and Sutherland from Acacia Partners, an Austin-based investment firm that had been an investor in Perennials and Sutherland since December 2015.
The Sutherlands retain a minority stake in the company and remain actively involved in its management and operations, with Ann as CEO and David as chairman.
Just before the sale to Bertram closed, Perennials opened a nearly 60,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Gujarat, India, where the company now produces the majority of its rugs. In two and a half years, the plant has grown and employs more than 500 workers, nearly double the workforce at the Mexico City plant.
“We are a global company,” said Ann Sutherland. “There are a lot of good opportunities, and we’re going to explore those markets. “