Interview with Duane Franklin

Words by Michelle Heslop. Photo by Jody Beck.

How long have you been in the business of mattresses? About 35 years ago, I was hired by Gregg’s Furniture, a local furniture and mattress manufacturing company. I worked in their Fisgard Street factory, manufacturing mattresses, until I left in 2000 to start my own business, Young and Franklin. In 2010, the opportunity to partner with Ross Taylor, from Gabriel Ross, presented itself and together we created a business plan for what would become Fawcett.

What is unique about a Fawcett mattress? Our narrative starts with being local and sourcing the highest-quality, natural, sustainable and healthy components from the best suppliers we can find. These materials are free from off-gassing, VOCs, formaldehyde and fire retardants and therefore, safer to bring into your home. We locally manufacture all of our mattresses on-site from our open concept workspace where you can view our showroom through large glass panels. Our mattresses are naturally fire resistant, anti-microbial, anti-fungal, dust mite resistant, mold and mildew resistant and they can biodegrade at the end of their life.

What does sustainable mean to Fawcett? Sustainability involves using the most natural, sustainable materials available and incorporating those products into our mattresses. But sustainability also refers to our business model that translates to manufacturing products locally, offering a great work environment with jobs our staff can be proud of and wages they can feel good about. It isn’t enough to just say “buy from us because we’re local,” we offer a natural product at a price point that makes sense.

Speaking of price point, how much more does a Fawcett mattress cost? Our mattresses cost about the same as a brand name mattress but we feel the consumer is getting more value at Fawcett. Customization, ability to edit your mattress and most importantly, the natural materials and construction components are the main drivers that contribute to an uncompromising sleep. We keep our costs competitive with our unique selling model. Basically, our clients are buying ‘factory direct’ with no intermediary or distribution costs. Tell us about the upcoming expansion of the Fawcett showroom. The expansion will give us the space we need to elevate our customer experience. Choosing the best comfort in a mattress is personal and people need a certain level of space and time to evaluate their preferences. Consumers are placing more value on healthier sleep options and the expansion will help us focus on providing people with education, options and a personalized customer experience.