The Tempur Sealy Mattress Firm Divorce

When I first heard of the coming split between Mattress Firm and Tempur Sealy, I imagined it would proceed like most cable negotiations, there would be lots of threats, but in the end they would simply make up, and all would be well. This has not been the case. All of Mattress Firm’s corporately owned locations coast-to-coast have been busy removing all mentions of Tempur Sealy products, and selling off their floor models. The divorce is really happening.

I have heard much from both sides, and the media has published their opinion. I’m sure both feel justified in their decision. Both parties need each other. But maybe some time apart will help them both realize that working together is so much better for everyone, especially consumers.

I am a consumer advocate. I want what is best for mattress shoppers. And for that reason alone, I believe this is a big mistake. It makes the lives of consumers so much easier to test all the top brands at one location. This decision will make that far more difficult.

Who Wins?

In the short term, Serta and Simmons win valuable floor space in the largest mattress retailer in the United States. The departure of so many products also opens the door for smaller, more innovative mattress manufacturers to get their foot in the door of the Texas-based brand. Mattress Firm has a reputation for innovation, as they have worked with manufacturers to produce exclusive products, some of which have been quite successful. And they have the size and locations to test products to make sure they will succeed nationally.

Mattress Split

A mattress divorce is never fun.

Tempur Sealy is a global brand. And while its a blow losing Mattress Firm, you can find their flagship product everywhere. Heck, I bet you could probably find a New York street vendor selling Tempur-Pedic mattresses. Finding additional distribution for Stearns & Foster and Sealy to make up for the loss of Mattress Firm may take some time.

Although many Mattress Firm salespeople are apprehensive about the future, the company itself is well on its way to replacing every Tempur Sealy product. At the end of the day, more choices at better price points may be exactly what consumers want. The more seasoned salespeople have been through similar changes, but nothing this large. The company started with nothing but Sealy and Stearns & Foster on the floor. It will be an interesting change for many of the veterans.

For consumers, you can always still order Tempur-Pedic online, and there are plenty of retailers who will continue to carry their product, including some Mattress Firm franchisees. Many department stores and furniture stores still carry Sealy and Stearns & Foster. And I would give the new selection of options at Mattress Firm a look as well. We may all be surprised by what lands on their floors, and how well they rebound from this divorce.

I think both brands are stronger together. It would be a good thing if cooler heads could prevail and a new partnership forged between the two. The industry is better when these two major players can work together. But if not, I think each can survive and thrive without the other.

More links on the split and recent news:
Tempur Sealy Put To Bed After Cutting Ties With Mattress Firm
Mattress Firm expands partnership with major bedding manufacturer after another breaks ties
Tempur Sealy: Non-Matt Firm orders up about 10%
Mattress Firm jumps on Serta Simmons deal after losing Tempur Sealy


Image: Ambro /

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