Published in Manufacturing

Furniture maker Knoll to close Grand Rapids plant

BY MiBiz Staff Friday, January 17, 2020 01:01pm

GRAND RAPIDS — Furniture manufacturer Knoll Inc. will close its manufacturing facility in Grand Rapids, resulting in layoffs of approximately 180 hourly and 30 salaried employees. 

The closure is part of an effort to consolidate Knoll’s manufacturing footprint, according to the company. 

East Greenville, Pa.-based Knoll (Nasdaq: KNL) will continue manufacturing and distributing all product lines currently manufactured in Grand Rapids, the operations of which are expected to transition to other company plants in North America. 

The move is expected to result in annual cost savings to Knoll of approximately $10 million, according to the company, and will also entail an accumulation of restructuring charges over a multi-year period of approximately $18.2 million.

Knoll also has facilities in Muskegon, as well as in Toronto and Pennsylvania — all of which will remain open, according to the company. 

“We are enormously proud of our Grand Rapids associates’ dedication but must remain particularly vigilant about our long-term competitive position,” Chris Baldwin, Knoll office president and COO, said in a statement. “After a comprehensive analysis of our North American operations, we determined substantial benefits could be realized as a result of this restructuring.”

The plant is expected to be closed by the second quarter of 2020 with “remaining restructuring” to be completed by the end of 2021, he added. Employees from Grand Rapids will receive severance packages and some will be able to relocate to other Knoll facilities.

Through the first nine months of 2019, Knoll generated more than $1.05 billion in revenue, up 11.5 percent from the same period in the prior year. The company is expected to release its fourth quarter and full-year 2019 earnings during the first week of February. 

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