Nashville-based manufacturer and licensing group Southerland Inc. has signed new licensee Symbol Mattress Industries LLC, based in Ajman, United Arab Emirates. Symbol, which is not affiliated with the U.S. manufacturer of the same name, has been granted the right to produce and market Southerland’s family of brands in the Middle East, as well as in India and Pakistan. The UAE producer operates a 140,000-square-foot manufacturing plant and is both a retailer — at its Symbol-branded stores — and a wholesaler of mattresses.
“As we looked at our options for bringing a U.S brand into the region, we wanted a strong, respected, quality brand with a range of product we could offer our customers,” said Muhammad Farooq, general manager of operations for Symbol.
“Southerland is an extremely well-run company with terrific brand stories we believe will resonate strongly with our consumers.” Southerland began an international licensing program earlier this year, a first in the company’s 126-year history. The initiative is led by Jim Nation, a 40-year mattress industry veteran who is Southerland’s executive vice president of national accounts and international licensing.