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Industry & Trends

Herman Miller is Now MillerKnoll Following Buyout

Zeeland, MI—Herman Miller (NASDAQ: MLHR) renamed itself MillerKnoll after completing the acquisition of Knoll, Inc. on July 19, 2021. Herman Miller and Knoll, along with their legacy brands, will continue as distinct brands as part of MillerKnoll.

The combined company comprises 19 leading brands, a presence across more than 100 countries worldwide, a global dealer network, 64 showrooms, more than 50 physical retail locations, and global multichannel eCommerce capabilities. Herman Miller, Knoll, and their legacy brands will continue to operate as distinct brands, which allows existing retail outlets like Herman Miller and Design Within Reach to operate without rebranding.

The new MillerKnoll logo

MillerKnoll says it plans to have a new operating model that will ensure strong brand ownership—transforming the industry and redefining modern design.

“We are excited to introduce MillerKnoll, a collective of dynamic brands coming together to design the world we live in,” says Andi Owen, formerly CEO of Herman Miller and now president and CEO of the combined MillerKnoll. “Our industry—and the world in general—is changing rapidly. Design is the way we imagine and shape a better future. In coming together, we will define and lead this transformation, like we have other transformations in our histories.”

Andi Owen, CEO of Herman Miller
Andi Owen, CEO of Herman Miller prior to the merger, is now CEO MillerKnoll.

Herman Miller and Knoll have deep legacies as industry pioneers and a shared commitment to design, innovation, operational excellence, sustainability, and social good. Herman Miller was a West Michigan businessman who helped his son-in-law, D.J. De Pree, buy the Michigan Star Furniture Company in 1923. De Pree had been working at the company, which opened in 1905, since he was hired in 1909 as a clerk. De Pree knew his father-in-law was a man of integrity, so he decided to rename the company after him.

Herman Miller Greenhouse Factory at night.

By the middle of the 20th century, the name Herman Miller had become synonymous with “modern” furniture. Working with legendary designers George Nelson and Charles and Ray Eames, the company produced pieces that would become classics of industrial design.

With the transaction now closed, the newly combined MillerKnoll offered this agenda, saying it will:

  • Catalyze the transformation of the home and office through a united portfolio of complementary brands.
  • Support and grow existing Contract and Retail channels, as well as explore new ideas and business innovations, to ensure they meet the highest level of manufacturing excellence, customer sales and service, and user experience.
  • Comprise global functional teams that serve the entire enterprise, including Manufacturing, Digital, Technology, Marketing, Strategy, Finance, Human Resources, and Legal.
  • Drive growth and profitability with a scaled US and international footprint, maintaining strong brand ownership designed to preserve and nurture the essence of the brands within the combined company’s portfolio, which includes the Herman Miller and Knoll brands.

MillerKnoll now benefits from increased reach and the ability to better serve customers across the contract furnishings sector, residential trade segment, and retail audiences. In a statement MillerKnoll says it is well positioned to enhance engagement with architects and interior designers, who support decision-making for both contract and residential customers.

“We are a group of people and brands guided by a shared vision, common values, and a steadfast commitment to design,” says Owen. “As MillerKnoll, we’ll push and inspire each other to innovate and design the future for all the places where life happens.”

Owen will head a world-class executive team made up of leaders from both Herman Miller and Knoll. Herman Miller intends to submit a proposal to its shareholders at its upcoming annual meeting to seek approval of the formal change of Herman Miller’s corporate name to MillerKnoll. At this time, Herman Miller common stock will continue to trade on the Nasdaq under the ticker symbol “MLHR” while Knoll shares are no longer traded.

About MillerKnoll: MillerKnoll is a collective of dynamic brands and one of the largest and most influential modern design companies in the world. The company is a result of a deep legacy of design, innovation, and social good. MillerKnoll was created in 2021 from the combination of Herman Miller and Knoll, and includes brands Colebrook Bosson Saunders, DatesWeiser, DWR, Edelman Leather, Fully, Geiger, HAY, Holly Hunt, KnollExtra, Knoll Office, KnollStudio, KnollTextiles, Maars Living Walls, Maharam, Muuto, naughtone, and Spinneybeck|FilzFelt. Guided by a shared vision, common values, and a steadfast commitment to design, MillerKnoll innovates and designs the future for all the places where life happens while contributing to a more equitable and sustainable future for all.

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