Universal Furniture appoints Rick Lovegrove as VP Upholstery

In the newly-created role, Lovegrove will take the helm of  company’s ever-expanding upholstery business

HIGH POINT, N.C., June 24, 2024 – Universal Furniture announces the appointment of industry veteran Rick Lovegrove as vice president of upholstery. This strategic move underscores Universal Furniture’s commitment to enhancing its upholstery business, which has seen remarkable growth over the past few years. This expansion includes introducing new frame options, seat depths, retailer programs, COM and an impressive selection of over 500 new fabric choices. 


Lovegrove joins Universal Furniture from Four Hands, where his leadership as president of upholstery grew the category to the largest revenue segment at the company. With a career distinguished by domestic and imported furniture expertise, Lovegrove brings a unique skill set to Universal Furniture, poised to drive innovation and growth within the upholstery segment.

“The upholstery business at Universal has been a focal point in our growth strategy, aimed at expanding design appeal and growing sales,” said Sean O’Connor, president of Universal Furniture. “The rapid expansion of this division necessitated the creation of this role, and Rick’s extensive industry experience positions him perfectly to lead and further accelerate our momentum.” 

Universal Furniture started its upholstery program in 2015 and saw substantial growth in 2019 when it acquired Southern Upholstery. This acquisition allowed Universal to develop domestic upholstery options starting in 2020, putting the company in a strong position for ongoing market leadership.

In his new role as VP upholstery, Lovegrove will collaborate closely with Sean O’Connor and Shannon Lookabill, VP of product development, to drive strategic initiatives and innovation within Universal Furniture’s designs. Together, they aim to capitalize on emerging trends, enhance product offerings, and reinforce Universal Furniture’s position as a whole home leader in the furniture marketplace. 

“I am truly excited to join the Universal team,” said Lovegrove. “The growth of the brand over the last couple of years has been exciting to witness, and I can’t wait to build and scale the next generation of the upholstery business.” 

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“Rick’s proven track record in scaling businesses within the furniture sector aligns with our vision for Universal Furniture’s future,” O’Connor said. “His leadership will be instrumental as we continue to innovate and meet the evolving demands of our customers.”

About Universal

Retailers and interior designers around the world trust Universal Furniture’s award-winning, smart and stylish designs to create modern, well-appointed living spaces for the whole home. The company’s casegood, upholstery, accent and outdoor designs are developed under the brand names Universal Furniture, Miranda Kerr Home and Coastal Living.

Universal Furniture, founded in 1968 and based in High Point, N.C., is the recipient of 14 Pinnacle awards for design excellence from the International Society of Furniture Designers. It is a brand of Samson Holdings, one of the world’s largest vertically integrated furniture manufacturers. For more information, visit www.universalfurniture.com, or find us on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest @UniversalFurn.

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