The origin of FRANCE BED
Futaba Seisakusho was established in 1949 to manufacture vehicle seats. The company employed seat manufacturing technology to start production of a detachable sofa bed in 1955. At that time, the company used the FRANCE BED trademark. We changed our name to FRANCE BED in 1961 as we started the full-scale manufacture of beds.
For hundreds of years, it has been a Japanese tradition to sleep on a futon placed on top of straw tatami mats that cover the floor. These futon consist of both a mattress and coverings. This type of bedding had several advantages in Japan’s restricted living environment. First, the futon can be folded and stored in a closet. Thus, a limited space can have several different uses. Second, the spot where the futon is placed becomes one’s bed. Therefore, common room used as a bedroom was the equivalent of a revolution from a futon culture o a bed culture, and challenged to the traditional Japanese way of life. That is how our commercialization of beds helped transform a culture. When promoting this business, we thought we required a product name with impact, so we solicited names in-house. The suggestion for FRANCE BED combined the image of refined French culture and the liberty and equality proclaimed by the French revolution. We used this as our trademark because these ideas corresponded to our business precepts.
The first product we commercialized as FRANCE BED was a sofa bed for the general consumer, which met with an overwhelmingly positive response. This contributed significantly to the impetus for change in the Japanese lifestyle to one in which furniture was used as a sofa in the daytime and a bed at nights. During the 1960s the Japanese economy entered a period of rapid growth. This created more abundance in our daily lives and in living space. As the structure of Japanese homes changed to incorporate single-room bedrooms, bed production steadily grew. Ata the same time, interiors became more Western in design as more people became enamored with Western culture and the “bed culture” took root in Japan. As a result, our revolution bore fruit and the name “France Bed” became synonymous with beds themselves.
We have maintained a rack solid position as the leading company in the industry since changing our name. We aim to create living spaces of greater comfort and higher quality. Further, we strive to provide products that meet current needs. This is done through creating user-friendly, ergonomically-based designs, refined styling, and superior technological capability.