Turkey-based Yatas Grup aids earthquake victims

Bedding and furniture manufacturer provides much-needed supplies, including mattresses to displaced disaster victims

KAYSERI, Turkey — Turkish bedding, upholstery and case goods manufacturer Yatas Grup (pronounced Yatash) said that its manufacturing facilities here and in Ankara suffered no damage from the 7.8 magnitude earthquake in Turkey and Syria earlier this month that has thus far claimed nearly than 47,000 lives, including 5,800 in neighboring Syria.

Although the area reportedly felt aftershocks, the company’s production facilities were not impacted as Kayseri is about two to three hours north of the epicenter and Ankara is even farther north.

The Kayseri plant produces mattresses, upholstery and foam, and the Ankara facility produces its wood furniture line.  In the U.S., the mattresses are sold as Yatas Bedding and the furniture is sold under the Enza Home brand.

Yet while the production facilities were intact, the company said that at least nine and as many as a dozen of its stores in the region were either damaged or destroyed.

This is an example of some of the damage caused by the Feb. 6 earthquake that hit southern Turkey and neighboring Syria.

“We have a lot of them in that region and are also in Syria as well,” said Chad Turney, the company’s North America director, of the stores, which are similar to Ashley locations in the U.S. and other markets. “We have stores in both countries and are affected from a corporate point of view.”

Because of the extensive damage and number of displaced individuals — estimated in the millions — the company also is helping out with relief efforts, including the donation and distribution of blankets, which was one of the most sought-after items given the cold front that swept through the region following the disaster.

The company also is sending an undisclosed number of mattresses — along with monetary donations — to aid to displaced people living in container and tent cities in the areas affected. 

“I would just say we are being very aggressive in providing help and are waiting for them to tell us what they need,” Turney added. “The blankets were the most requested thing immediately because they had a very severe cold snap that happened at the same time. The temperatures really dropped. … It was kind of like a perfect storm to some degree.”

Turney said the company has alerted its own customers in the U.S. that it was not impacted from a manufacturing standpoint. However, he noted, the company will continue to provide assistance in the days and weeks ahead as it learns more about the needs of individuals and their communities, including the latest quake that hit the same region Monday night.

“We are prepared to do whatever is needed and necessary,” he said. “From a humanitarian standpoint we are trying to do everything we can because this is going to be a long-term situation. … That is our main focus, trying to at least help the ones who need it the most at the moment.”

Thomas Russell

Home News Now Editor-in-Chief Thomas Russell has covered the furniture industry for 25 years at various daily and weekly consumer and trade publications. He can be reached at tom@homenewsnow.com and at 336-508-4616.

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