The upholstery sector is satisfying many companies in the leather supply chain. “Following the forced lockdown caused by the global pandemic, people have probably rediscovered the pleasure of being able to live in a more comfortable environment, appreciating the added value that quality furniture brings to everyday life. It is not surprising that people tend to surround themselves with greater comfort, when the only place where you feel truly safe becomes your home”, says Dr. Giulia Fontana, Technical Director of Syn-Bios SpA, a Veneto-based chemical-tanning company, leader in the production of highly sustainable pigments, who helps us understand the logics which move the upholstery market today and to look to the future.

Giulia Fontana, Technical Director of Syn-Bios SpA

“When buying a piece of furniture, the precariousness of the global economic situation leads people to evaluate the choice between a quality and therefore durable item, such as a leather sofa, and one in imitation leather or fabric, certainly more economically accessible, but at the same time less comfortable and resistant”, explains Fontana.

Given the premises, I imagine you have good job prospects in this sector also for the next few months …
““We are confident about it. We believe that the leather furniture market can benefit from the situation, also in light of the growth in turnover that we managed to achieve in 2020, despite the periods of forced closure: the excellence guaranteed by the characteristics of the products we offer to produce upholstery leathers, primarily the ranges of highly resistant pigments, has in fact rewarded us with the trend of a steadily increasing sale. We should, however, not just think of leather articles limited to the production of sofas, but used also for the creation of leather panels, rather than coverings for countertops: the home has become a place where well-being and safety are increasingly sought after”.

What are the reasons that favour leather in upholstery?
“Leather, as a covering material of totally natural origin, gives back the feeling of comfort that other materials are not able to give or equal: this is why people are willing to pay an added value. Besides, if the concept passes that, thanks to the application of fully certified chemical products, leather remains a safe material for human health and the environment, then the choice of leather furniture is a winner”.

How can these concepts be brought to the market?
“By focusing on research and sustainability. The ‘forced break’ due to the lockdown has not stopped the positive energy of Syn-Bios, which has continued to focus on the excellence of its products to restart with the added value of a certification, which increasingly more brands are expressly requesting. In 2020 we invested in the certification of some pigment lines dedicated to the production of upholstery leathers, to ensure compliance with the limits of the restricted substances of the list published by ZDHC. We are confident that the furniture sector will grow further in 2021, aware of the guarantee that Syn-Bios products offer in the production of leathers free of substances that are harmful for human health”.

In the pictures leathers treated with SYN-BIOS products