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From Home Furnishing Business

Herman Miller Acquires Interest in Hay

Herman Miller, Inc., the global designer and furniture manufacturer, announced it acquired a 33 percent equity interest in Nine United Denmark A/S (Hay) for $66 million.

Herman Miller also acquired the rights to the Hay brand in North America for approximately $5 million. The company has the option to increase its ownership stake in the future.

Founded in Copenhagen in 2002 by Troels Holch Povlsen and Rolf and Mette Hay, the company is a leader in ancillary furnishings in Europe and Asia, and active in both the contract and residential furnishing markets. Over the course of the coming year, Hay's goods will be available through Herman Miller's Design Within Reach channels. 

Herman Miller will launch an online store, as well as open four Hay retail locations in North America. Hay products will also be integrated into the offer to Herman Miller's North American and international dealers.

"Hay is one of the best articulated design brands in the furnishings space. Hay is a key building block toward our stated priority to scale our consumer business. The Hay assortment will significantly expand our offer to a younger, more urban demographic that we have targeted for expansion,” said Brian Walker, CEO of Herman Miller.

"With more workplaces and commercial spaces adopting a residential feel, the opportunity to offer quality designs at an attainable price point is only expanding,” he continued. “Adding Hay's considerable stable of products to our ancillary offer further cements Herman Miller's ability to deliver excellent design to customers regardless of budget or what kind of space they're outfitting."

"Herman Miller is the perfect partner to expand Hay's position in North America," said Rolf Hay, co-founder of Hay. "On a personal level, Herman Miller and the work of Charles and Ray Eames are big reasons I do what I do today, and I am excited to align with a company that shares our sense of purpose and values."

The entire existing management team led by CEO Henrik Steensgaard will continue driving the Hay brand, its product development, and its efforts in Europe and Asia from their headquarters in Denmark. CEO Henrik Steensgaard will report to a new Hay board of directors chaired by Troels Holch Povlsen.

"We're pleased to join Troels Holch Povlsen and Rolf Hay as co-owners of the company," said Jeremy Hocking, executive vice president of strategy and business development, Herman Miller. "And we're also delighted that Rolf and Mette Hay will maintain their current creative and leadership roles."

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