OSLO, Norway - China's Qumei Home Furnishing Group has made an all-cash bid for Norway's Ekorns - the country's biggest furniture maker - for $630 million.
 
Qumei, with support from Huatai Zijin Investment Co., will offer to acquire all of the shares of Ekornes through a voluntary cash offer of $17.17 per share, said the companies in a joint statement. The Ekornes board recommends that shareholders of Ekornes accept the offer.
 
Ekornes owns such brand names as Ekornes, Stressless, Svane and IMG. Stressless is a global furniture brand, while Ekornes, Stressless and Svane are known brands in the Norwegian furniture market. IMG is best known in Australia and the United States. Ekornes runs nine manufacturing facilities throughout the world: five in Norway, one in the U.S., one in Thailand, and two in Vietnam. 
 
“This agreement opens new growth opportunities for Ekornes and our renowned brands such as Stressless and IMG in China and in existing markets,” said Ekornes CEO Olav Holst-Dyrnes in the release. “Qumei is a leading furniture group with more than 850 stores in China. We will benefit from Qumei's insight into Chinese consumers’ design and product preferences and gain accelerated access to the Chinese market.”
 
Ekornes' customers can expect business as usual. 
 
“Existing agreements with our retailers and other business partners will continue as before,” he said. “Existing brand names will be further strengthened. The headquarter remains in Sykkylven, Norway, and management continues in its current positions. The manufacturing sites in Norway, the (United States), Thailand and Vietnam will continue as before.”
 
Ekornes expects an increase in sales.
 
“We will also continue to invest in our highly automated production facilities to further improve our competitiveness,” Holst-Dyrnes added. “All in all, we believe the agreement will increase sales and production volumes at our current production facilities.”
 

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