History

Learn About Our History


History Timeline

Founded with the belief that furniture could be made a better way.

1945

Carlyle Weinberger founds Ashley Furniture Corporation as a sales organization with headquarters in Chicago, Illinois.

1970

Ron Wanek is appointed General Manager of Arcadia Furniture; a 35,000 ft2 facility with 35 employees in Arcadia, WI. The manufacturer specializes in cabinet commodes and occasional tables distributed nationally through Ashley Furniture Corporation.

1972

Arcadia Furniture Corporation introduces Wall Systems.

1974

The furniture company develops its own transportation fleet

1976

Major ownership and management is restructured. The company rebirths product lines and retools its facilities.

1979

Todd Wanek is officially hired as an Ashley Furniture Corporation employee (#158).

1982

Major ownership and management is restructured, allowing Arcadia Furniture and Ashley Furniture Corporation to merge into one company: Ashley Furniture Industries. Corporate headquarters were moved from Chicago, IL to Arcadia, WI.

1983

A "Suggestion Program", which later is renamed the "Idea Network" - to improve efficiencies and quality, while reducing cost. Employees are rewarded for being "agents of change", which is a critical component of Ashley’s continuous improvement culture.

1984

As imports take over the table business, Ashley converts to making bedroom furniture.

Ashley Furniture Industries begins overseas trading and manufacturing to strengthen its product lineup, including occasional tables with high gloss finishes.

1985

Ashley Furniture Industries introduces dining room furniture.

1986

Ashley Furniture Industries turns the furniture industry on its head with an innovative, patented product line called "Millennium". A unique proprietary polyester finishing technique which gave the wood an impeccable luster and extreme durability.

1987

Establishes plant in Whitehall, WI. This facility is equipped with state-of-the-art finishing equipment to produce Ashley Furniture Industries signature Millennium line.

1988

Ashley Furniture Industries introduces formal and casual dining rooms and mixed media furniture with various combinations of glass, marble, steel and wood.

1989

Todd Wanek moves to Asia to serve as the General Manager of Ashley Furniture Industries Taiwan. He begins establishing and managing Ashley Furniture Industries business development in China, Malaysia, Thailand, Taiwan and Indonesia.

1992

Ashley Furniture Industries intermodal rail yard is established; only one in Wisconsin and one of seven private yards in the US.

1996

Ashley Furniture Industries introduces leather upholstery.

Todd Wanek is promoted to Ashley Furniture Industries President and Chief Operations Officer.

1997

The first Ashley HomeStore opens in Anchorage, Alaska.

Ashley Furniture Industries introduces motion upholstery including recliners.

Ashley’s Angels is formed by a truck driver in Mississippi. The non-profit organization provides food, clothing, and toys to underprivileged children.

1999

Ashley Furniture Industries establishes manufacturing in Kunshan, China and manufacturing and distribution in Ripley, MS.

2000

The first international Ashley HomeStore opens in Aichi, Japan

2001

Establishes operation in Colton, CA.

2002

Ashley Furniture Industries establishes powerhouse manufacturing and distribution facility in China.

Todd Wanek is promoted to Ashley Furniture Industries Chief Executive Officer.

2004

Establishes manufacturing and distribution facility in Leesport, PA.

Establishes operations in Brandon, FL.

Ashley Furniture Industries upholstered products become the best-selling in the world.

2005

Ashley Furniture Industries becomes the world’s largest manufacturer of furniture.

On October 19th, Ashley HomeStore reaches 200 stores.

Ashley Furniture Industries begins "Voice of the Customer" program – where management and employees work in the warehouse and on deliveries to identify opportunities for product and service improvement and quickly implement changes.

2007

Ashley HomeStore passes Walmart to become the No.1 retailer of furniture and bedding in the United States.

On January 18th, Ashley HomeStore reaches 300 stores.

2008

Establishes plant in Tan Uyen District, Vietnam.

2009

Ashley for the Arts is formed and holds its first event in Arcadia, WI. The non-profit holds an annual event to raise money to supports more than 40 participating non-profit organizations.

On November 18th, Ashley HomeStore reaches 400 stores.

Ashley Furniture Industries launches Ashley Sleep®

2010

Ashley HomeStore launches the Hope to Dream program to provide beds to underprivileged children allowing them a good night’s sleep.

2012

Establishes plant in Binh Duong City, Vietnam.

Ashley HomeStore accelerates the expansion of its international retail presence.

Manufacturing and Distribution facility established in Advance, NC.

2013

Manufacturing facility established in Verona, MS.

Ashley HomeStore receives its first Women’s Choice Award.

2014

Ashley launches Ashley Express, its direct-to-consumer delivery program, next day delivery with sights on same day delivery.

On February 21st, Ashley HomeStore reaches 500 stores.

2015

Ashley HomeStore establishes eCommerce as part of the Omni-Channel initiative.

Distribution facility established in Mesquite, TX.

On December 16th, Ashley HomeStore reaches 600 stores.

Ashley HomeStore retail operations facility opens in Ybor City (Tampa), FL.

2016

Ashley Furniture Industries introduces outdoor furniture.

New Ashley HomeStore logo is unveiled and brand implementations begin.

2017

On January 15th, Ashley HomeStore reaches 700 HomeStores

2018

On January 23rd, Ashley HomeStore reaches 800 HomeStores.