Thu, Jan 19, 2006 - Page 11 News List

Furnishings firm starts trading on the GRETAI today

By Jessie Ho  /  STAFF REPORTER

Hola Home Furnishings Co (特力和樂), the nation's largest home furnishing and decorations retail chain, will make its debut on the GRETAI Securities Market today at NT$38 (US$1.183) per share, a company official said yesterday.

Hola, which previously traded on the Emerging Stock Market (興櫃市場), is the first company listing on the local bourse this year.

Taken from the initials of "House of Living Art," Hola, a subsidiary of hand-tool maker Test Rite International Co (特力), was established in July 1997 to meet growing demand for house decoration.

Hola provides around 15,000 products, ranging from bedding, curtains, storage, appliances, lighting, furniture and dinnerware to toiletries, decorations, candles and gourmet food. About 40 percent of its products are under brands that it created, such as Light Up, Enrichtta and Living Art.

With income significantly increasing in recent years, demand for home furnishings and decoration has also been enhanced, boding well for Hola's business, Hola president Chen Yen-chun (陳彥君) said.

The company posted revenue of NT$2.8 billion last year, a 28.7 percent jump from the previous year. The company's pre-tax earnings last year were NT$144 million, or NT$4.16 per share, a 10 percent increase from 2004, according to a company statement.

With promising industry prospects, the company hopes to expand its market share this year, Chen said, without giving figures.

Hola has 10 outlets nationwide, and expects to open three more by year's end in Taichung, Taipei County and Hsinchu.

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