DANBURY, CT - Ethan Allen Interiors Inc. announced plans to build a 300,000-square-foot manufacturing facility in Mexico to expand its upholstery operations. The residential furniture giant also said it will continue to invest in its North Carolina plants.

Ethan Allen (NYSE:ETH) said the new $15 million facility will be located adjacent to its existing 260,000-square-foot plant in Guanajuato, Mexico. The company expects to break ground within the next 45 days and begin production at the facility in the next 18 to 24 months.

"We are pleased to continue to develop a strong manufacturing capacity to grow and service our business," said Farooq Kathwari, chairman and CEO. "Our goal is to maintain strong upholstery manufacturing in North America, which we believe is a long-term competitive advantage that will allow us to advance our objectives of maintaining short order times and improving capacity to ship custom items more quickly.  We are pleased to continue to strengthen our vertically integrated structure from concept of idea, to engineering, to manufacturing, to retail and logistics."

Kathwari said the furniture manufacturer continues to invest in its two Maiden, NC upholstery plants, which total 600,000 square feet. "In the past two years we have invested $5 million in adding technology and other improvements to these facilities. Our Mexico operation manufactures fully upholstered products for our North American market as well as our international markets, including China, and also provides most of the cut and sewn covers for the Maiden, NC, operations. Our 1,500 interior design associates and 300 design centers provide a strong competitive base to grow and service our business," he added.

Ethan Allen owns and operates eight production facilities, including five manufacturing plants and one sawmill in the United States plus one plant each in Mexico and Honduras. The company says approximately 70 percent of its products are made in its North American plants.

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