DFS Furniture Group plc

DFS plc is the leading upholstery retailer in the United Kingdom, Founded by Baron Graham Kirkham, KCVO in 1969. 

Originally called Northern Upholstery, Kirkham’s ethos was to cut out the manufacturing middleman by creating his own factory above a snooker hall in Carcroft, Doncaster and then retailing the sofas downstairs.

With a degree in Economics from Leeds, I joined Northern Upholstery/DFS in 1989 as a marketing assistant. This role was the “University of Advertising” hands-on experience learning from one of the most successful and influential entrepreneurs in the UK. 

Key Achievements              

  • Developed television scripts and co-produced commercials for DFS, Northern Upholstery and The Dining room centre featuring Tom Adams
  • Co-Developed the ground-breaking consumer credit campaigns of 2 years Free Credit and Pay Not One Penny
  • Completed the Karass effective negotiation course, enabling substantial media and print cost savings


  • Negotiated and bought the local press, radio and outdoor media for the group’s stores.
  • Organised photography and artwork for press adverts, leaflets and newsletters.
  • Wrote copy for print, radio, direct mail and television advertising.
  • Customer database management including segmentation analysis to ensure accurate customer profiling.
  • Responsible for organising events to showcase new campaigns to the store network.
  • Helped coordinate the annual DFS Classic tennis tournament at Edgbaston