EAST GREENVILLE, Pa. - Knoll Inc. has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Muuto for $300 million. The Scandinavian company offers furniture, lighting and accessories for the office/workplace and home.
Announced Dec. 12, the transaction is expected to close in January.
Knoll (NYSE: KNL) said the acquisition will further advance its global strategy as a go-to resource for office and home furnishings, including the commercial contract, decorator to-the-trade and consumer markets. Muuto will retain its headquarters in Copenhagen and operate as an independent company and brand identity.
"Muuto is a ‘resimercial’ design-driven, creative Scandinavian brand representing global style for the workplace and home," said Andrew Cogan, Knoll president and CEO. "We have been tracking their explosive emergence on the workplace and residential scene in both Europe and North America for some time now.”
The addition of Muuto's products will expand the range of price points currently offered by Knoll, Cogan said, and complement the contract furniture manufacturer's product portfolio, “with particular appeal to a younger generation of architects, designers and clients and those seeking a homier, more relaxed aesthetic.”
Cogan added Knoll's goal is double Muuto's business in three to five years through brand expansion in North America. With 80 percent of Muuto's business currently in Europe, Knoll's international sales mix will also improve, from 15 to 20 percent.
Founded in 2006 by Peter Bonnén and Kristian Byrge, Muuto, which means “new perspective” in Finnish, provides affordable luxury workplace and residential furniture, lighting and accessories. According to a statement from the company, over the past three years Muuto has grown its top line by a 33 percent CAGR to approximately $75.0 million.
"Over the past decade, we are proud to have built a business that honors the best of Scandinavian design and that is relevant for a new generation of clients seeking beauty, elegance and affordability," said a statement from Bonnén and Byrge. “The culture and team we have assembled to run the business are aligned with the values upon which Knoll was founded almost 80 years ago.”
Anders Cleemann, Muuto CEO, added, "Knoll is an extraordinary partner to assure the continued growth of our brand to wider audiences. We share Knoll's commitment to working with residential clients and companies that are transforming their work environments as their employees’ workstyles evolve.”
Knoll said it intends to fund the acquisition of Muuto through a combination of cash on hand and borrowings under its credit facility.
“Muuto strengthens our ability to compose integrated solutions from products and services that naturally work together," Cogan said. "Muuto also opens up new sources of revenue for Knoll dealers to complement their focus on our existing Office and Specialty product lines and enhances our offering for Knoll Space residential partners."
Founded in 1938 and headquartered in East Greenville, Pennsylvania, Knoll posted net sales in 2016 of $1.164 billion. The company's brands include: Knoll Office, KnollStudio, KnollTextiles, KnollExtra, Spinneybeck | FilzFelt, Edelman Leather, HOLLY HUNT, and DatesWeiser.
Knoll Inc. was ranked number 10 on the 2017 FDMC 300 list of top North American wood products manufacturers.