SENG Stories


May 2024

25 years as a specialist

It was not a given that SENG would become a large retail chain with 50 stores in Denmark and Sweden. Jørgen Staal was only 21 years old, when he and his business partner Bjarne Nielsen opened the first store under the name ‘SengeSpecialisten‘ on the corner of Lundingsgade and Ole Rømers Gade in Aarhus on May 1, 1999.

"It was very hard work in the beginning. We did accounting in the morning, sold beds during the day, and delivered them in the evening. Bjarne knew a bit more about operations because he had a higher business degree, but I had only completed a 1-year business course while I was an apprentice at Skjern Boligmontering. Fortunately, we also received some business guidance from an accountant, among others, and without it, SENG would probably not exist today," says Jørgen Staal.

Over the first few years, a significant debt was accumulated. But after following an accountant's guidance, SengeSpecialisten had been established as a joint-stock company which was crucial for the store's survival. Jørgen's parents had also guaranteed DKK 250,000 for his half of the joint-stock company which was not always easy for Jørgen. But one day, in 2004, Jørgen received a call from his bank manager.

"On the other end of the line, I could hear a piece of paper being torn. It was the guarantee obligation to my parents being torn up. After several years of hard work, we had finally restored the equity. It was a huge milestone, and from there the company really took off," says Jørgen Staal.

In the coming years, SengeSpecialisten opened several new stores, including in Viborg, Kolding, and Aalborg. And in the years leading up to the financial crisis, the market for premium beds was almost insatiable. However, the financial crisis hit hard and the market almost came to a standstill. SengeSpecialisten tried to invest its way out of the crisis with new store openings, but after the financial crisis, the market had changed.

So instead, to follow the company's growth strategy, SengeSpecialisten looked for an investor. This resulted in a partnership with Lars Larsen Group, who in 2014 bought the majority of shares in SengeSpecialisten.

Since then, the nationwide bed chain has acquired the bed store chain Sängjätten in Sweden, undergone a name change from SengeSpecialisten to SENG, acquired online retailer Sengetid, and received two Børsen Gazelle awards. Most recently, Jørgen has been appointed COO of SENG with responsibility for retail, HR, customer service, and expansion.

"I am very proud and humble to see that the store I opened 25 years ago has evolved so much, and that I can still be part of developing and expanding SENG," says Jørgen Staal.

May 2021

The big picture and the small details

Where do you go to get a better night's sleep? More and more consumers choose SengeSpecialisten. For two financial years in a row, SengeSpecialisten presents a significant increase in turnover, and the growth continues. What is the winning formula?

Martin Amstrup Bang, CEO at SengeSpecialisten, points to a combination of economies of scale and attention to detail as the key ingredients. He elaborates: "Being a part of Lars Larsen Group has led to reduction of costs within for instance purchasing and marketing agreements where we benefit from being part of something bigger. Also, we have invested in our systems which allows us to work more efficiently." The details come into play in SengeSpecialisten's stores. "There is a lot of skilled and experienced employees in our stores. Many of them have been with SengeSpecialisten for several years and possess a great deal of know-how when it comes to meeting our customers' needs. Over the last few years, we have brought our physical stores up to par with the skills of our store employees through extensive redecorating," Martin Amstrup Bang adds.

Hygge has been a focal point in the redecoration of stores. Warm colours, wooden floors, dimmed light and green plants create homely, inspiring surroundings. "Bedrooms seem to become increasingly important to consumers so we must offer beds that both feel great and look great. Therefore, we make the displayed beds with duvets and pillows that we remove when a customer wishes to test a bed. It does take some extra time for our store employees but is worth the effort when it comes to creating the right atmosphere," says Martin Amstrup Bang. Customer satisfaction surveys show that the efforts pay of: An impressive 96.5 % of customers agree that there is a pleasant atmosphere in SengeSpecialisten's stores. And in case anyone gets too comfortable when trying out beds at SengeSpecialisten, they also offer quality coffee as a tasty pick-me-up.

To continue the growth and make a good night's sleep available to even more consumers, SengeSpecialisten plans to establish more physical stores in Denmark as well as expanding to other countries in the future

October 2020

The reincarnation of a mattress

When the new Auping Evolve arrives this autumn, Sengespecialisten is proud to offer customers the world's very first fully circular mattress. With help from users, a tired Evolve mattress can be returned to Auping for repurposing and a new life – again and again.

Full circularity sets demands on materials as well as design. Evolve travels with a Circularity Passport that allows customers full transparency of the materials used in the mattress. The passport shows where each raw material comes from and how it will be reused. When it is time to recycle the mattress, the passport will show users how and where the mattress stops over before being decoupled and turned into a new mattress by Auping.

Sengespecialisten adds the mattress to their assortment as a step towards increased sustainability. The aim is to offer customers even more products with certifications that prove a minimal impact on the environment within all product groups.