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Business deals

Cozy fit: Beanbag chair maker Yogibo bought by Japanese distributor

Web-Shark looks to bring successful sales strategy to big developing markets

Japan is home to nearly 70% of Yogibo stores worldwide.

TOKYO -- Yogibo, an American company known for its beanbag furniture, has been acquired by the company distributing its products in Japan, one of its biggest markets.

Web-Shark bought the New Hampshire-based company in late December in a deal believed to be valued at more than 10 billion yen ($87 million).

Yogibo, established in 2009, makes and sells chairs, sofa and other foam-bead-filled furniture that molds to the user's body. It had a presence in eight markets at the end of 2021, including the U.S., Japan and South Korea. The company does not publicly release sales data, according to Web-Shark's announcement.

Web-Shark became Yogibo's Japanese sales agent in 2014, and won fans with its own unique products and appealing store designs. The country now hosts nearly 70% of Yogibo's roughly 130 stores worldwide.

Yogibo is known for its signature comfortable, form-fitting chairs. (Photo courtesy of Yogibo)

Sales of imported Yogibo products generate nearly all of Web-Shark's earnings. The Japanese company's revenue grew 77% in the year through July to 16.8 billion yen, while net profit more than tripled to 3 billion yen.

Web-Shark is considering changing its own name to Yogibo following the acquisition. It plans to expand into new markets, focusing on countries like India and Malaysia with growing populations and developing economies. It will also look into reworking Yogibo's production process, which now involves outsourcing to factories in Vietnam and China, to reduce defect rates.

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