HIGH POINT, NC — Furniture executives Bill Benton, Sean Slack and James Martin Jr. have partnered to form Folio 21, a new casegoods importer.

According to a statement, Folio 21 will launch at the Fall High Point Market with a line of bedroom furniture the company describes as “contemporary/transitional with an edge.” Folio 21 has leased a showroom in the IHFC Wrenn Wing, Space 647, and will also show at pre-market in September. Corporate offices will be located at the Radio Building in High Point.

Benton, who serves as president and chief executive of the new company, was most recently president of CR International and formerly president and chief executive of the Powell Co. He also was employed for more than two decades with Levitz Furniture. Slack, who serves as executive vice president of merchandising and product development, previously held that title at CR International, with similar positions at both Powell and Lane. Martin, Folio 21 vice president of major accounts, previously worked as a sales representative with Broyhill Furniture Inds.,

"We launched this company to address the void we've identified in the marketplace for quality features at affordable retails," Slack said in a statement. "Our target is retailers who are looking for the next level of product and our focus will be unique design and hip styling combined with all of the best construction standards, including full-extension side guides and English dovetailing. Our products emphasize high quality, multi-step finishing and unique veneers, which are not usually found in goods at this price level."

“We’re coming to Market with an edgier look aimed at younger consumers who have been proving indifferent to the me-too products that have characterized retail floors for the past few years,” Benton said in a statement. “The industry has been chasing cheap goods and we all know it’s not working; the majority of average-unit-dollar sales are dropping while costs have continued to rise. Our goal is to give consumers a compelling reason to step up.”

Retail price points will range from $1,699 on complete five-piece sets to $2,499, with the bulk of the product line between $1,699 and $1,999.

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