“Be brave” Bruno Bergenholtz best advice!
Bruno Bergenholtz operates the lifestyle store AB Småland in Malmö. His experience as a buyer is extensive. Bergenholtz visits Formex every season, usually scanning the entire fair. Here he shares his best advice for buyers.
Located at Södra Förstadsgatan in downtown Malmö, AB Småland is a store with floor space covering 1,500 square meters. Everything from furniture and interior design to clothing is made from recycled or organic materials. The name, AB Småland, is taken from Bruno Bergenholtz’s own childhood in Älmhult in Småland. “For me, Småland is about using resources wisely and being logical. It is how I was brought up. Recycling and being close to nature had a big effect on me,” he says. His store AB Småland is now three years old, and sales are growing steadily.
What is the secret to finding the right products?
“We start with color and form and look for new products. It is the new products that drive us forward. We buy exclusively organic or sustainable goods, so we do not look at everything in detail. But we comb through all of Formex to see if there is anything that can supplement what we already have. Color is extremely important – it must match our rich color scale.
How do you plan your visit to Formex?
“We go hall by hall, not entirely structured. But Formex has a basic structure, so that helps.”
What is your best advice for buyers who are visiting Formex?
- Be color smart
If the color is not right, it does not matter how good the product is. It will be impossible to sell.
- Think about the feel you want to convey
Why does the customer come to us? What gap in the market do we fill?
- Be brave
Dare to buy more of certain things instead of too little of everything. Otherwise it will be difficult to be profitable.
- Ask the suppliers lots of questions
Do not look only at price and margin. Also ask about quality and sustainability.
- Don’t forget your classics
Look for new products, but don’t forget to follow up on the products that generated the most sales.