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MMQB THE MONDAY MORNING QUARTERBACK

4.27.09

CHANGING OF THE GUARD

Dick Haworth says “it is simply time to pass the torch to the next generation.”


Top News / April 27, 2009 Dick Haworth to Retire

Ex-KI President Sues for Wrongful Termination, After 45 years in the industry, Dick Haworth announced Seeks more Money today that he is retiring from Haworth and passing KI says the allegations are false leadership of the company to his son, Matthew and that he was terminated for Haworth. cause. Former KI president Rod Ganiard claims he was wrongly fired from the company and in a lawsuit filed against his former employer and boss, he levels charges of bullying, interoffice romance and even sexual harassment against CEO Dick Resch. In documents filed long after the original filing, Ganiard now claims Resch’s repeated (alleged) affairs with female staffers were affecting his ability to run day-to-day operations at the company and that he was fired for confronting Resch about it. KI spokesman Joe Burkard characterized the most recent claims as “disturbing” and said the company is going to “vigorously” defend itself against the lawsuit. “Essentially, this is baseless,” he said. “It is concerning to us that these allegations are coming out just before this was scheduled to go to trial. “Rod has changed his story numerous times. These latest allegations weren’t referenced in the original complaint. There’s a motive beyond this, and it is a financial motive. He was not happy with the (severance) package that he negotiated. Now he is trying to rewrite history.” Ganiard referred questions about the lawsuit to his attorney, Bob Elliott. “KI refused at the outset last May to pay Rod what he had coming in terms of pay, stock options and accrued vacations,” Elliott said. continued on page 10

After 45 years in the industry, Dick Haworth announced last Wednesday that he is retiring from Haworth, Inc. and passing leadership of the company to his son, Matthew Haworth. Matthew Haworth’s rise to the company’s top position is not a surprise -- his father has been grooming the 40-year-old for the job for more than a decade and he has assumed roles with progressively greater responsibility throughout his career.

Franco Bianchi, Matt Haworth and Dick Haworth

The company was quick to dispel any rumors about Dick Haworth’s health and the company’s commitment to remain privately held. “My health is great, our financial position is strong and our commitment to remain privately held is steadfast,” Dick Haworth said. “It is simply time to pass the torch to the next generation. Matthew is ready for the challenge and is eager to take our company to the next level.” While Dick Haworth is retiring from day-to-day work, he will continue on as chairman emeritus. But unlike his father, company founder G.W. Haworth, Dick Haworth said he does not plan to come in every day or work into his 90s. Instead, he will focus his attention on areas of the company he is passionate about: customer interaction, product development and engineering.

Flexsteel Sales Fall 25% in Third Quarter Commercial sales take a similar dive. Flexsteel Industries, Inc. Tuesday reported net sales for the quarter ended March 31, 2009 of $73.6 million compared to the prior year quarter of $98.1 million, a decrease of 25.0%. The company reported a net loss for the current quarter of $1.9 million or $0.28 per share compared to net income of $0.8 million or $0.13 per share in the prior year quarter. During the current quarter the company recorded pre-tax charges of approximately $1.7 million of inventory write-downs and $0.5 million of employee separation costs due to business conditions. Net sales for the nine months ended March 31, 2009 were $249.6 million compared to $305.0 million in the prior year nine-month period, a decrease of 18.2%. The company reported a net loss for the current nine-month period of $2.3 million or $0.35 per share compared to net income of $3.9 million or $0.59 per share in the prior year period. During the current nine-month period the company recorded pre-tax charges of approximately $2.4 million related to facility consolidation and employee separation costs and the aforementioned $1.7 million inventory write-down. For the quarter ended March 31, 2009, residential net sales were $53.6 million, compared to $60.9 million, a decrease of 11.9% from the prior year quarter. Recreational vehicle net sales were $2.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2009, compared to $14.0 million in the prior year quarter, a continued on page 10


Top News 24 BY 7 A heads up on what’s happening

Fly me to the Moon

Three years ago, buying a new corporate jet sounded like a good idea to Steelcase. The company was having a good year and it needed a new ride to get customers to and from Grand Rapids. My, how quickly a good idea turns bad. Though the company tried not to, Steelcase recently took possession of its new Dassault Falcon 900 EX, a $35 million luxury corporate jet that will be used mostly to taxi customers to West Michigan and back in style. According to sources, Steelcase tried to not take possession of the jet since it still had its “old” Falcon in the company hanger at Grand Rapids’ Gerald R. Ford International Airport. No way, said Dassault. Steelcase had paid for the jet over three years and it was going to take possession. Though they couldn’t have known it three years ago, Steelcase’s timing couldn’t have been worse. The market for used corporate jets crashed along with the economy, plus corporate jet travel received a big black eye when the Big Three automakers flew theirs to Washington for Congressional hearings on the bailout. Oops. “Three years ago, things looked much nicer,” said Steelcase spokeswoman Jeanine Holquist. “The sales price of jets declined really dramatically.” The company ended up trading in its old jet to Dassault. The price of the sale has not been released, but should find its way into the company’s next quarterly report. While other companies like Herman Miller have turned to fractional jet ownership programs, Steelcase is steadfast in its commitment to corporate air travel, despite monthly maintenance fees of more than $20,000 and flying time costs nearly $4,000 an hour. Plus, the company has eight full time pilots on staff. The company says jets are indispensable to its sales process. The company does use its jets heavily. Since taking possession of the new plane March 30 in Little Rock, AR, it has made more than 30 flights. Dassault Falcons are considered some of the safest and most state-of-the-art jets made. According to the company’s web site, the 900EX flies 4,500 nautical miles nonstop, the farthest in its class. “It’s the most versatile aircraft and also one of the safest given its ability to fly slower on approach than its twinjet competitors,” the company boasts. Despite the heavy use, it takes a long time to pay for a $30 million jet. But if Steelcase lands a few big jobs because of it, it’ll all be worthwhile. Rob Kirkbride

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“There are things I still love about this business like working with the customers and product development. This decision gives me much more (personal) flexibility,” he said. Dick Haworth also is passionate about shaping public policy. Though he said he has no plans to run for public office, he is interested and involved in local and state politics. He sits on the board of advisors for the conservative Mackinac Center for Public Policy, is a member of the Michigan Leadership Council and is involved in several community initiatives. The time was simply right to retire, according to the 66-year-old. “The board we

have in place is strong and the management team is the strongest we’ve ever had as a company,” he said. “It is just right for me.” His father may have founded the company, but Dick Haworth is responsible for what it is today. He led the organization from a single product line with sales of $10 million and 225 employees to build a broad-based, multi product line company with sales of over $1.6 billion and more than 7,500 workers worldwide. Dick Haworth started with the company in 1964. He was named vice president of research and development in 1966. The following year he entered the U.S. Army as a first lieutenant and served for two years. He then became executive vice president in 1969. He was instrumental in developing the Modern Office Module system, now known as the UniGroup Office InteriThe Monday Morning Quarterback Copyright © 2009 by Zig Zag Corporation. ISSN 1064-3575 All rights reserved. Founded 1990 Subscribe instantly at http://www.mmqb.com Editorial / Sales office: 847-681-1199 Fax us at 847-681-1847 Email: info@mmqb.com • http://www.mmqb.com Federal copyright law prohibits unauthorized reproduction or transmission of this publication (pdf ) in any form and imposes fines of up to $100,000 for violations. Do not copy, it’s stealing and we will find you! Really! April 27, 2009

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Top News

Dick and his father G.W. break ground for the new headquarters in 1977

or System. In 1976, Dick Haworth became the company’s president and chief executive officer. As president, he participated in the development and introduction of the industry’s first electrified, panel-based systems office furniture, ERA 1. Dick Haworth not only led the company, he actively helped design products. He has 14 patients in his name for products like prewired panels to overhead storage cabinets. Dick Haworth said he was careful not to stay on too long. Instead, he is leaving the company in a strong financial position. “I vowed to myself that I wouldn’t stay longer than I was useful,” he said. He also was determined to organize a smooth transition. Dick Haworth took over leadership of the company abruptly when G.W. Haworth was told his wife had terminal cancer. Although Dick Haworth was destined to run the company, the timing wasn’t ideal. Matthew Haworth takes the helm at Haworth during a turbulent time. The recession continues to hammer the indus-

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try. Haworth has cut jobs, executive pay and work hours. Still, with mentors like his father and grandfather leading the way, he believes he is ready for his new role with the company. “From a very early age, I wanted to try to do what my father did,” he said, noting he would go to the office with his father on Saturday mornings when he was a young boy. “After getting involved in the business, I found I really liked the industry.” Matthew Haworth joined the family business during the summer of 1983 with a job in the Holland Panels plant. In 1991, Matthew Haworth started with the company full time and has since held a wide variety of roles in marketing, manufacturing, sales, planning and purchasing. During his career, Matthew Haworth led the company’s largest single business unit as director of product line marketing and management for the office furniture systems business. He oversaw the growth of the newest systems product platform and the development of a global product management process, leading that busi-

ness group to company-leading growth. Since 2004, Matthew Haworth has served as part of the governing board for the company. He has participated in guiding Haworth’s global strategy, setting performance targets for the management team and evaluating performance of the management team. In 2008, Matthew Haworth moved from the operational side of the business to undertake a period of intensified professional development aimed at assuming a more in-depth leadership role in the company. This role increased his involvement with the company’s global business. Dick Haworth said he never pushed his son into the business. He has two daughters who are not involved in the family business. “I wanted Matthew in the business if he was interested,” Dick Haworth said. “Once Matthew got involved, it was easy to see that he was truly passionate about what he was doing. He has the right kind of focus and passion for a leadership role in the company.” Matthew Haworth said he does have

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Top News MMQB.COM ONLINE POLL Do you think there will be a large overhang of used furniture on the market when activity picks up?

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a different leadership style than his father and grandfather. G.W. Haworth was the entrepreneur, the founder who set the foundation for the company. Dick Haworth is a soft spoken intellectual. Matthew Haworth is the extrovert. He embraces public speaking (his dad doesn’t) and comes from a marketing background. All three generations of Haworth leaders share one thing: a passion for the industry. “I really want Haworth to be excellent in everything we do,” Matthew Haworth said. “I want to be able to look back and be proud of all that we accomplish.” With 20 years experience under his belt, Matthew Haworth isn’t green, but he will rely heavily on his management team, including Chief Executive Officer Franco Bianchi. Matthew Haworth said the company’s management team is “exceptional” and is just beginning to hit its stride. Bianchi said he has worked with Matthew Haworth for years and feels very comfortable about the transition. “I see it as a natural progression,” he said, adding that Dick Haworth will remain involved in critical areas like customer contact. “I salute the quality of the planning. “It’s a new day. It’s a new sign. At the same time, it’s not really a new day. Dick will stay with us as chairman emeritus. We are going to gain one more opportunity with Matthew. We will be a team of three.” Dick Haworth isn’t retiring completely, but he still feels the pull of the company’s history and the deep roots he has planted. “It is an emotional time for me,” Dick Haworth said. “It isn’t easy to step down from a place you’ve been for 45 years. But I’m not really walking away. I’m passing the baton. I’m going to be this company’s no. 1 cheerleader. “It’s an exciting time. I’m excited to be in the position I’m in. I always like the big win. For Haworth, this is a big win.”

HNI Sales Skid 28% in Latest Quarter The decrease was driven by substantial weakness in all channels of the office furniture industry. HNI Wednesday confirmed what everyone in the industry already knows: Business is awful. HNI Corporation announced sales of $405.7 million and a net loss of

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April 27, 2009

The Monday Morning Quarterback 7


Top News ($11.9) million or ($0.27) per diluted share for the first quarter ending April 4, 2009. Included in first quarter results are charges related to the shutdown of its South Gate, California office furniture manufacturing plant and the disposition of several hearth retail and distribution locations. Consolidated net sales for the quarter decreased $157.7 million or 28.0 percent to $405.7 million. Acquisitions contributed approximately $10 million or 1.8 percentage points of sales. Gross margins were 2.0 percentage points lower than prior year due to decreased volume. Total selling and administrative expenses, including restructuring charges, decreased $32.0 million or 18.5% due to cost control initiatives, lower volume related costs and incentive-based compensation expense offset partially by higher restructuring and transition costs. The Corporation’s first quarter results included $5.1 million of restructuring costs. These included $3.0 million of severance costs associated with the shutdown and consolidation of production of its South Gate, California manufacturing location

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and $2.1 million related to the disposition of several hearth retail and distribution locations. Included in 2008 were $8.5 million of restructuring charges and transition costs of which $4.3 million were included in cost of sales. HNI estimates that additional charges related to the shutdown of the South Gate, California facility will impact pre-tax earnings by an estimated $7.2 million over the remainder of 2009. “We continued to confront highly challenging market conditions and took strong actions to reset our cost structure during the quarter. We made painful but necessary decisions, including the closure of our South Gate facility and transitioning out of five hearth retail and distribution locations. We also reduced day-to-day operating costs across our businesses. These actions along with better price realization allowed us to exceed our first quarter expectations,” said Stan Askren, HNI Corporation Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer. HNI’s office furniture business mirrored the results for the company as a whole. First quarter sales for the office furniture

segment decreased $128.2 million. The decrease was driven by substantial weakness in all channels of the office furniture industry. Acquisitions contributed approximately $10 million or 2.2 percentage points in the first quarter. First quarter operating profit for the office furnishings divisions, decreased $18.2 million. Operating profit was negatively impacted by lower volume and higher material costs. These were partially offset by price realization, contributions from acquisitions, cost control initiatives and lower variable compensation expense. First quarter sales for the hearth products segment decreased $29.6 million driven by significant declines in both the new construction and remodel-retrofit channels. First quarter operating profit decreased $8.6 million. Operating profit was negatively impacted due to lower volume, higher material costs and restructuring expenses partially offset by price increases and cost reduction initiatives. “Our visibility of future demand remains limited and marketplace conditions uncertain. We continue to reset our cost

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Top News structure to current sales levels. Although there may be initial signs of economic stabilization, we are continuing to manage our businesses for ongoing difficult conditions. Our investments in new products and selling initiatives when combined with our reset cost structure position us well for the future,” said Askren.

Trendway to Lay Off Workers “Based on the outlook, we felt we needed to make some adjustments.” The recession (or depression) in the office furniture industry isn’t just reducing employment at the large manufacturers. Thursday morning systems and seating maker Trendway Corporation announced a workforce reduction with the layoff of 25 hourly workers on April 16. Trendway President and CEO Bill Bundy cited a challenging economy for the reduction. “Based on the outlook, we felt we needed to make some adjustments.” Bundy, who along with office employees took a pay cut to reduce costs, noted “Our shipments, down slightly more than 10% for 2009 so far, are performing better than our industry’s reported decline of 30%. We look for better business conditions soon for Trendway and all families and businesses within our community, even the companies with whom we compete.”

COMPONENTS Leggett & Platt Sales Fall 28% in First Quarter Company continues to experience very weak demand across their markets. Industry component maker Leggett & Platt reported Wednesday that yearover-year sales for the first quarter sank to $718.1 million or 28% from the $998.3 million reported last year. The component maker also reported first quarter earnings of $.06 per share. In the first quarter of 2008, earnings from Continuing Operations were $.23 per share. The year-overyear reduction in quarterly earnings was primarily due to lower unit sales volumes, which were partially offset by improved margins on selected products as a result of better pricing discipline. First quarter

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sales from Continuing Operations were $718 million, 28% lower than last year’s sales of $998 million, due to extremely weak market demand. First quarter cash flow from operations was $115 million, as efforts to reduce working capital contributed significantly to cash flow. Net debt-to-capital was 27.1%, well below the company’s target range of 30-40%. The first quarter tax rate was 52%, atypically high due to the low level and mix of earnings among various tax jurisdictions; the 2009 full year tax rate is now anticipated to be approximately 39%. President and CEO David S. Haffner commented, “First quarter earnings were in line with what we anticipated; however, market demand was weaker than we expected, and was the driving force behind the year-over-year reduction in earnings. In addition, as anticipated, first quarter earnings were significantly impacted by steel deflation (as inventory valuation and selling prices reflected lower steel costs). This impact should be essentially offset by a LIFO benefit over the course of the full year, but the timing mismatch of these two offsetting items depressed first quarter earnings and will also impact 2Q, though to a lesser extent. “We continue to experience very weak demand across our markets. For many of our businesses, demand seems to have stabilized during the first quarter, albeit at levels below what we anticipated. Office furniture volume continues to decline, consistent with industry trends. Though data for our markets affords only limited visibility, based upon first quarter sales and current demand levels we have reduced our guidance for the full year. Leggett & Platt remains well situated to weather the current challenging economic environment, even if it lasts for an extended period. The company is in an extremely strong financial position with nearly $600 million available under its existing commercial paper program and revolver facility, net debt-to-capital well below the company’s long-term target, and no significant long-term debt maturing until 2012. The company expects, even under current market conditions, to continue to fund both capital expenditures and quarterly dividends from operating cash flow. Earnings per share (from Continuing

Operations) for the full year 2009 are expected to be $.60 - $.90. Earnings should benefit from previous closures of poorlyperforming operations, reduced overhead spending, and lower commodity costs. Quarterly earnings will be highly variable. The first half of 2009 is being negatively impacted by steel deflation (as inventory valuation and selling prices reflect lower steel costs). This impact should be essentially offset for the full year by a LIFO benefit; Leggett is now forecasting $68 million of LIFO benefit for the year, and anticipates recognizing approximately $17 million in each quarter. As a result of the mismatch in timing of these two offsetting items, earnings for the remaining quarters should improve. Full year sales (from Continuing Operations) are projected to be $2.9-3.3 billion, or 19%-29% lower than in 2008. This reduction from prior guidance reflects anticipated continuation of extremely weak market demand. Leggett expects 2009 cash requirements for dividends (approximately $155 million) and capital expenditures (about $100 million) to be funded solely from operating cash flow, which is anticipated to exceed $300 million. The company still intends to use excess cash flow primarily to repurchase shares of its stock; however, the company may complete those purchases at a slower pace than previously anticipated, depending on the outlook for the economy. Management has a standing authorization from the Board of Directors to purchase up to 10 million shares annually. Residential Furnishings quarterly sales from Continuing Operations decreased $109 million, or 21%. Extremely weak market demand more than offset inflation-related price increases and market share gains in specific product categories. EBIT (earnings before interest and income taxes) from Continuing Operations decreased $36 million, with the income impact of significantly lower unit volumes partially offset by cost reductions. Commercial Fixturing & Components quarterly sales from Continuing Operations decreased $77 million, or 40%, due to the company’s decision to walk away from sales with unacceptable profit margins, market softness in office furniture components, and reduced capital spendApril 27, 2009

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Top News ing by retailers. EBIT from Continuing Operations decreased $11 million. Industrial Materials quarterly sales decreased $48 million, or 22%, as a result of weak demand. EBIT decreased $6 million primarily due to lower sales. Specialized Products quarterly sales

from Continuing Operations decreased $65 million, or 38%. Weak global demand in all parts of the segment - automotive, machinery, and commercial vehicle products - led to the decline. EBIT from Continuing Operations declined $24 million due to lower sales. 6

Ex-KI President Sues for Wrongful Termination continued from page 3 Ganiard outlined plans in his lawsuit of Resch discussing pending negotiations to sell KI to MSD Capital, the investment arm of Michael Dell’s computer fortune. Ganiard claims MSD Capital wanted him on board. MSD Capital reduced its offer and Resch fired Ganiard, according to the lawsuit. Ganiard said Resch was putting MSD Capital in “a useless exercise since he never intended in the first place to give up KI.” Elliott said Resch tried to stop the board from giving Ganiard the bonus he said Ganiard deserved. 2007 was the best year the company had ever had and Resch recommended to the board that Ganiard receive a 70 percent bonus. The board decided to override that recommendation and give Ganiard a 92 percent bonus. “Mr. Resch was infuriated by that,” Elliott said. “He replaced a few people on the board and when the board re-voted, they made the bonus 70 percent. When Mr. Ganiard stood up to Mr. Resch, he fired him and screwed him over.” Ganiard also claims he was worried about leaving The HON Co. for KI after KI fired former President Andrew McGregor for no apparent

reason. Ganiard said he was brought in to eventually succeed Resch, but soon realized Resch “had no intent of letting anyone, including the Board of Directors, have any control, at any time, over KI.” According to his lawsuit, KI hired Ganiard as executive vice president in March 2006, with the promise he would succeed Resch when he retired as CEO. Ganiard was fired in May 2008. Ganiard claims he later learned KI made the same promises to McGregor, who had been hired in 2003 and fired in 2005. In a lawsuit against KI and Resch, McGregor sought $1 million plus a $1.5 million stock buy-back, and later reached a confidential settlement. Burkard added that some of the allegations against Resch are “very personal and quite private.”“We have statements prepared internally and we are not actively out there drawing attention to something that is completely false,” he said. “I don’t want to say it hasn’t affected us as a company at all, but it hasn’t changed our focus much. We are focused on having a good year in 2009. It’s an aggravation. It distracts us from the good things that are happening at this time.” 6

Flexsteel Sales Fall 25% in Third Quarter continued from page 3 decrease of 82.0%. Commercial net sales were $17.5 million for the quarter ended March 31, 2009, compared to $23.2 million in the prior year quarter, a decrease of 24.9%. For the nine months ended March 31, 2009, residential net sales were $173.7 million, compared to $191.2 million, a decrease of 9.1% from the nine months ended March 31, 2008. Recreational vehicle net sales were $13.4 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2009, a decrease of 70.0% from net sales of $44.5 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2008. Commercial net sales were $62.5 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2009, a decrease of 9.9% from net sales of $69.3 million for the nine months ended March 31, 2008. Gross margin for the quarter ended March 31, 2009 was 16.5% compared to 18.4% in the prior year quarter. The decrease in gross margin percentage for the quarter is primarily due to $1.7 million (2.2% of net sales) adjustment to realizable value on inventory due to business conditions primarily related to vehicle seating. For the nine months ended March 31, 10 The Monday Morning Quarterback

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2009, the gross margin was 18.2% compared to 19.6% for the prior year nine-month period. “The consolidation of manufacturing operations that the company announced on September 10, 2008 was substantially completed as of December 31, 2008. However, workforce reductions have taken place at other facilities as we continue to adjust operations to bring production capacity in line with current and expected demand for our products. Company wide employment has been reduced approximately 30% over the past year,” said the company in a press release. “Demand for our products is dependent on factors such as consumer confidence, affordable housing, reasonably attainable financing and an economy with low levels of unemployment and high levels of disposable income. These factors are all currently in poor positions, and indications are that they will remain that way in the near-term. We are not anticipating significant improvements in market conditions at this time, and are managing our business on that basis. 6

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CHANGE THAT’S WORKING

HIGHMARK

HIGHMARK IS A GOOD NEWS STORY IN AN INDUSTRY BESET BY SO MUCH GLOOM AND DOOM BY ROB KIRKBRIDE

A year ago, Highmark, the Huntington Beach, Calif. seating maker, decided to reinvent its brand, launch a new task chair and radically overhaul the way it connected to its dealers and customers. It is a small company with sales of about $15 million, so any change is a big deal to Highmark and its 65 or so employees. The change seems to be working. While there are dozens of examples of smalland mid-sized office furniture makers that have gone out of business or are struggling to stay afloat these days, Highmark is bucking the trend. The company is blowing its sales expectations out of the water, according to industry veteran and Highmark President and Chief Executive Officer Chuck Loeb. “We’ve had great growth,” he said. “We exceeded our expectations in the first quarter by 28 percent.” Highmark is a good news story in an office furniture industry beset by so much gloom and doom. The company’s formula for success is no secret. Instead of pulling back when the economic slowdown started to hit, the company pushed forward with new products. Loeb believes companies that have been around a while are destined to fail if they don’t start moving, marketing and changing the way they’ve done business in the past. “Last year, we hired new reps throughout the U.S. where we didn’t have reps or had weaker reps,” he said. “Based on our bookings, I feel pretty good about what’s going on over here. I think it was important that we brought that brand promise to the table. We’ve proven that

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smaller companies can grow in these economic times.” Highmark has done some things right, to be sure. But it also is in the right market at the right time. The company is in the value market of seating. With corporate money tight, price is king. “The one word out there on everyone’s lips is value,” Loeb said. Last year, Highmark launched its In Motion task seating line with the InSync chair. The high-performance task chair was designed for Highmark by Francisco Romero of Phidesign in cooperation with Leggett & Platt design and engineering. Featuring weight-activated counterbalance technology much like the Humanscale Freedom and Knoll Life chairs, Highmark promises similar performance at a much lower price point. InSync lists at about $799 while the Knoll and Humanscale chairs each list at more than $1,000. Customers are realizing they can save a little money by going with Highmark instead of the better known -- but more expensive -- brands. “Our InSync chair brings a great value to the market,” Loeb said. “We are one of only about four or five manufacturers using a counterbalanced mechanism. We are winning opportunities out there with a product line that’s mid-market and value minded. Highmark is bringing high design down to the level of the (average office worker).” Loeb has years of experience in the office furniture industry. He has been in the office furniture market since 1975. He was an industry rep and later started his own repping

firm. He founded Highmark in 1992 and by the late 1990s, the company was named to Inc. magazine’s fastest growing companies list. It is a design and source company. Highmark comes up with the chair designs and sources parts from around the world. The components come into the company’s 60,000 square foot plant in Southern California where the company completes the assembly and adds upholstery and all the options. That’s one way the company keeps prices down, which Loeb says in important in the current market. “I believe people are looking for better pricing,” he said. “There’s not a day that goes by that people ask us, ‘What do you have in this price range?’ I do believe manufacturers out there have missed the boat by bringing products out that are too expensive for the market right now.” Interestingly, Highmark is winning project through dealers whose main lines include Haworth, Herman Miller and Steelcase to name a few. Loeb said Highmark is working on some “very large projects” throughout the world. Highmark is winning projects in part because of the simplicity of its products and sales methods. First the customer picks the chair from the good, better or best category. Then he outfits it with components from a bronze, silver or gold package. There are list prices, but dealer discounts still apply. Its InSync chair falls under the company’s “better” category. A new chair, slated to be unveiled at NeoCon called InTune (above) will fit into the “good” category. It is a lower priced chair with many of the same technological advances as InSync, important as the economy continues to struggle. At the same time, Highmark is leaning down its factory even more and making preparations to pounce on market share once the economy begins to turn up, even a little. Small manufacturers who still have the wherewithal to do the same should begin working on it now. “While we’re doing all that, we are watching everything in the company and determining what we need and what we don’t need,” Loeb said. “A lot of people are taking their eye off the ball. They are not reinventing themselves. There’s not a day that goes by where we’re not measuring things, making sure we’re doing things right. I think it is important to keep this ‘up’ attitude going.” Finally, Loeb believes it is a great time for small manufacturers to visit potential customers -- while the economy is slow and it is easier to get a meeting. “Customers might not know who the small manufacturers are,” he said. “It is a great time to get them on board. You wouldn’t believe how many potential customers say, ‘Wow, we are looking at products that we’ve never seen before.’ 6

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BALL PARK BONANZA

If baseball is America’s pastime, American Seating is the company that gives us a seat at the game. The Grand Rapids company’s seats have cradled fans at many of the most storied major league ballparks for the better part of a century. BY ROB KIRKBRIDE

T

The crack of the bat. The smell of hot dogs and roasted peanuts. The vibrant green field. Nothing is more American than baseball. And one contract furniture maker has ties to the game that stretch back nearly 100 years. If baseball is America’s pastime, American Seating is the company that gives us a seat at the game. The Grand Rapids company’s seats have cradled fans at many of the most storied major league ballparks for the better part of a century. And the company’s outdoor seating unit continues to outfit most of the new stadiums and refurbish the classics. Beyond the business, American Seating is part of the lore of the game. One of 12 The Monday Morning Quarterback

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American Seating’s oak seats at Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox, sits 502 feet from home plate. It is painted red to mark the spot where Ted Williams hit the stadium’s longest home run in 1946, in the second game of a doubleheader with the Detroit Tigers. American Seating has been part of that storied park since 1912. Some of those original wood-slatted seats still are used today. The Boston Red Sox have been an American Seating customer for nearly 100 years. Who else in the industry can claim to have a customer for a century? While the new baseball park bonanza of the 1990s has slowed a bit, the company still does brisk business with its

existing customers and is involved with a few new minor league and spring training venues. There are a handful of new baseball stadiums coming on line as well, said Chuck Bailey, American Seating’s national sales manager for its sports seating group. “We are in the majority of major league ballparks,” he said. “Right now, we are working with the Red Sox organization and ownership to reseat and refinish Fenway.” The old seats at Fenway have manual lift, which means fans had to lift the seat pan out of the way to get down the aisle. American Seating is replacing the original seats with new ones that are www.mmqb.com


Photo by Stanley Rowin

spring loaded. But in a stadium with as much history as Fenway, you don’t just pull out the old seats and replace them with modern versions. “Everything we have done at Fenway has been custom or unique,” Bailey said. American Seating took the classic old standards -- the cast iron sides that make up the structure of the chair -- and had them recast to have the same look and detail. The new standards allow American Seating to use a self-lifting seat mechanism. While the old chair slats were made of wood, the new seats feature individual plastic slats that match perfectly. The result is a totally modern chair with a classic look befitting a ballwww.mmqb.com

park with the history of Fenway. In fact, American Seating’s strength in the outdoor seating market can be partially attributed to its ability to make modern seats look classic. Beginning with Oriole Park at Camden Yards, built in 1992 to replace Memorial Stadium in Baltimore, American Seating has contributed to the resurgence of classic baseball stadiums that are built with the game in mind, not to serve as a multipurpose venue for baseball, football or concerts. Stadiums similar to Camden soon opened. The San Francisco Giants opened AT&T Park and the Houston Astros opened Minute Maid Park in 2000; and the Milwaukee Brewers opened

Miller Park in 2001. American Seating installed the seats for all those stadiums. Since the boom, American Seating has had steady business replacing old seats. Over the winter, the company replaced 45,000 of its own seats at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, according to Fritz Owen, regional manager, auditorium products. “Dodger Stadium opened in 1960 and we installed the seats when it originally opened,” he said. “They worked hard to update and renovate the stadium in the off season. Typically, where an installation like this might take nine months, we had six or seven months to get this done.” Replacing seats is a matter of economApril 27, 2009

The Monday Morning Quarterback 13


14 The Monday Morning Quarterback

April 27, 2009

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April 27, 2009

The Monday Morning Quarterback 15


American seating workers installing seats in Kansas City in the early 1950s

ics. Increasingly fickle baseball fans want more comfortable seats. And owners found out that they are willing to pay a premium for them. Money for a seating replacement project can quickly be recouped by an owner through higher ticket prices. American Seating also helps existing ball parks squeeze in more seats. “More and more ball parks are reducing the foul ball areas and adding seats,” Owen said. “That can increase capacity and add an additional 500 to 1,500 seats.” Fans also demand larger seats. American Seating has replaced all the Fenway seats with 19 inch models. Still, since Fenway sells out every game, the Red Sox wanted to add larger seats without sacrificing crowds. It can be a bit of a juggling act for the company to fit in all the seats. Most stadium refits are done in phases. At Fenway, for example, American Seating has replaced the seats in sections. American Seating started with the upper level pavilion, pavilion club and suites. Two years ago, it replaced all the outfield seats. This past off season, the company did half of the lower bowl. “We’ll finish Fenway at end of the season with the lower bowl,” Bailey said. “Each area of the ball park is special and unique. I’ve enjoyed it, because the city 16 The Monday Morning Quarterback

April 27, 2009

of Boston and the historical society has been keenly involved in what they have done. Everyone is trying to maintain what makes Fenway so special.” The company’s most recent projects include the new Washington Nationals park and new Busch Stadium in St. Louis. The company is working on the Florida Marlins new stadium in Miami, which is slated to open in 2011. The Minnesota Twins are expected to unveil plans for a new ball park as well. Stadium seating is profitable as well. American Seating’s auditorium and stadium seating division -- the second largest in the company behind its transportation division and ahead of its office furniture division -- represents about 20 percent of sales. Sports seating alone represents about 8 to 10 percent of sales, a fairly steady market for the company. Seating accounts for $4 million to $5 million of the total tab for a new Major League ballpark. Even the old seats have a market. The St. Louis Cardinals sold 12,000 American Seating seats from the old Busch Stadium for $480 a pair. The company also has a growing business supplying seating for minor league and spring training facilities, Bailey said. American Seating is outfitting the new shared spring training facilities of the Dodgers and White Sox in the Phoenix

area. Both ball clubs are long time American Seating customers. All this business, both new and old, has opened up American Seating to some stiff competition. Irwin Seating, also based in Grand Rapids, is one of American Seating’s main competitors. The company installed the seats at the Los Angeles Angels baseball stadium. American Seating’s products are assembled at the company’s Grand Rapids plant, a site it has worked from since it opened in 1886. It is an American-made product built for the quintessential American game. American Seating’s relationship with baseball is almost as old as the game itself. Both Bailey and Owen are baseball fans, so working with some of the top teams in a game is a treat. “Baseball is a fun market to work in,” Owen said. “It is competitive and you use a lot of the same principles as the education market (since public money is often involved). But the people in baseball are so dedicated to that market. For many, this is a labor of love. There are night games and so much preparation work that goes into every game. These are people that are very, very passionate about what they do. It’s fun in that regard. We’ve been fortunate to build these great relationships over the years.” 6 www.mmqb.com


Weekly Figures Stocks

COMPANY

SYM

CLOSE

CHANGE

52/W LOW

52/W HIGH

P/E

MKT CAP

MMQB Contract Furniture Index

Aaron’s Inc.

AAN

28.66

-1.36

15.11

31.05

17.19

1.54b

2000

Chromcraft

CRC

0.585

0.01

.20

4.45

na

3.58m

1500

3/30

4/6

4/13

4/20

4/27

CompX Int’l Inc.

CIX

6.25

0.87

4.30

8.25

na

77.26m

Design Within Reach

DWRI

0.98

0.19

.31

4.50

na

14.20m

Flexsteel

FLXS

6.31

0.04

4.98

12.55

56.92

41.54m

Herman Miller

MLHR

13.68

0.69

7.91

30.54

7.51

735.79m

HNI

HNI

15.62

1.90

7.70

34.37

15.27

692.34m

INSCAPE

INQ.TO

2.10

-0.20

C1.60

C4.50

26.25

C20.47m

Interface

IFSIA

4.92

1.14

1.45

14.33

na

310.95m

Close

Previous

Change

Kewaunee

KEQU

9.05

-0.11

6.50

18.80

6.16

23.13m

1985.50

1882.57

+ 102.93

Kimball Int’l

KBALB

5.89

-0.85

4.05

12.75

na

218.32m

52 week low

Knoll Inc.

KNL

7.31

0.45

5.33

18.68

4.02

344.15m

1363.30

Leggett & Platt

LEG

14.92

-0.08

10.03

24.60

24.03

2.34b

YTD Gain or Loss: -8.24%

Office Depot

ODP

2.44

0.32

0.59

14.39

na

670.59m

For the week, the MMQB Index gained a little over 5% while the Dow lost 0.7%, and the S&P 500 fell 0.4%. That meant an end to six-week winning streaks for both. The Nasdaq, however, advanced 1.3%. The Commerce Department said durable goods orders, which are considered a leading indicator of manufacturing activity, declined 0.8% in March, or 0.6% ex-autos. A new 52-week high was achieved during the week by Aaron’s Inc. There were no new 52-week lows recorded during the week.

OfficeMax

OMX

6.22

0.46

1.86

22.22

na

474.51m

Staples

SPLS

21.91

1.10

13.57

26.57

19.36

15.66b

Steelcase

SCS

4.42

0.13

3.03

12.86

na

590.07m

MMQB INDEX FOR THE WEEK:

52 week high 4181.68

U.S Office Furniture Production Est.

Volume

2008

$11.2 billion

20-20 Technologies TWT.TO

0.03

C0.86

C6.45

na

C27.44m

USTR

32.35

-1.15

18.20

53.60

7.84

766.92m

Virco

VIRC

3.80

0.28

1.65

5.24

42.70

54.82m

Value of U.S. Office Furniture Market (Millions of U.S. Dollars)

SOURCE: BIFMA

Year

Production

%Change

Imports

Exports

Consumption

%Change

2008

$11,160

-2.3%

$2,510

$679

$12,991

-3.2%

-2.3%

2007

$11,420

5.5%

$2,563

$565

$13,419

4.4%

$10,820

7.4%

$2,531

$492

$12,859

7.9%

SOURCE: BIFMA

Year

1.45

United Stationers

% change

2009e

$9.0 billion

-19.3%

2006

2010e

$8.9 billion

-1.1%

2005

$10,070

12.7%

$2,280

$438

$11,912

12.3%

2004

$8,935

5.1%

$2,022

$347

$10,610

5.4%

e=estimate Revised 3/2/2009

U.S Office Furniture Consumption Est. SOURCE: BIFMA

Year

Volume

% change

2008

$12.9 billion

-3.2%

2009e

$10.5 billion

-19.0%

2010e

$10.5 billion

-0.1%

e=estimate Revised 3/2/2009

The chief office furniture trading partner with the U.S. is Canada, receiving about 50% of all U.S. office furniture exports, and currently providing about 45% of all office furniture brought into the States. That percentage was closer to 60% in the late 1990’s but imports from other countries, particularly China, have gradually been increasing their share of the U.S. market.

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2003

$8,505

-4.3%

$1,870

$307

$10,068

-2.5%

2002

$8,890

-19%

$1,777

$338

$10,328

-16.4%

2001

$10,975

-14.4%

$1,806

$430

$12,351

-17.0%

2000

$13,285

8.5%

$2,094

$496

$14,883

9.5%

Revised 2/23/2009

Annual Shipments by Product Category Year

Seating

Desks

SOURCE: BIFMA

Storage

Files

Tables

Systems

Other

2008

27.6%

11.3%

5.4%

14.5%

9.2%

26.4%

5.6%

2007

27.9%

11.0%

7.3%

12.7%

7.5%

28.8%

4.8%

2006

26.5%

10.9%

7.4%

13.3%

7.2%

30.2%

4.5%

2005

26.3%

11.1%

7.6%

14.6%

7.5%

28.8%

4.2%

2004

26.5%

11.0%

7.9%

14.1%

7.2%

29.4%

3.9%

2003

26.6%

11.0%

8.0%

13.5%

6.8%

30.5%

3.5%

2002

25.7%

11.9%

6.3%

14.3%

6.8%

30.9%

4.1%

2001

25.2%

11.5%

6.0%

12.6%

7.1%

33.7%

3.9%

2000

24.9%

11.9%

4.9%

12.4%

6.4%

36.6%

3.0%

April 27, 2009

The Monday Morning Quarterback 17


Industry Briefing Events NEW YORK / May 5-7, 2009 Lightfair International - the Future. Illuminated. Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York, NY. www.lightfair.com LAS VEGAS / May 14-16, 2009 HD 2009 Expo and Conference at the Sands Expo and Convention Center. www.hdexpo.com CHICAGO / June 15-17, 2009 NeoCon World’s Trade Fair at Chicago’s Merchandise Mart www.neocon.com TORONTO / September 24-25, 2009 IIDEX/NeoCon Canada at the Direct Energy Centre. www.iidexneocon.com BALTIMORE / October 28-29, 2009 NeoCon East at the Baltimore Convention Center www.neoconeast.com

BRIEFING Textile Maker Victor opts out of NeoCon With the annual NeoCon World’s Trade Fair only seven short weeks away, Textile maker Victor has made the decision not to show in 2009. “Following last year’s event, we determined that we had accomplished many of the goals we set out to achieve with our NeoCon participation. So this year, we decided to redirect the resources required to exhibit at NeoCon into our product research and developmental efforts,” said the company in a press release. “Even though we are not exhibiting this year, we are excited to be partnering with many of our customers for a variety of cooperative marketing activities. In showrooms and booths throughout the Merchandise Mart, Eco Intelligent® fabrics will be on display, incorporated into the latest product offerings of our partners who share our passion for sustainable designs. Victor will be 18 The Monday Morning Quarterback

supporting our valued partners by providing a variety of educational and promotional materials that detail our efforts to create products that reduce our impact on the environment.”

Seen:

Bernhardt will Close Upholstery Plant Bernhardt Furniture said last week that it plans to close one of its upholstery plants in Shelby, NC on June 12 because of poor business conditions. The closure would eliminate more than 100 jobs. Employees were recentlynotified. The facility makes sofa and chairs, including a small amount of furniture for the company’s Martha Stewart line, according to William Howard, vice president of human resources for the Lenoir, N.C.-based manufacturer. Howard said the company has no plans to sell the facility and told employees that no material or equipment will be removed, in hopes that the economy will turn around and business will pick up. The plant has operated in Shelby for 40 years.

Cape Contract Furniture and Tuff-Edge Merge Cape Contract Furniture and Tuff-Edge Inc. announced a new partnership that will build in two important areas: the promise of a broader product portfolio, and access to innovative technology. Under the leadership of Greg Maniscole, the Toronto-based company has established a record of leadership for table solutions for high usage applications. “Between both of our experiences in corporate, health care, institutional, hospitality, and educational environments, along with their patented Poly Resin system, Tuff Edge was the ideal partner for our growth towards a new level of capabilities for our customers,” said the company in a press release last week. The company at present will operate under the name Cape / Tuff-Edge Inc. with all orders being sent directly to Cape to be processed.

April 27, 2009

Peabody Office Furniture Vice President of Sales Christopher Peabody (second from left), and Peabody sales coordinators Jen Rich (first on left) and Sarah Saling (far right) joined Rose F. Kennedy Greenway Conservancy Executive Director Nancy Brennan (second from right) and other local businesses and volunteers to help clean up Greenway in downtown Boston in celebration of Earth Day, April 22nd. Peabody Office Furniture, located on the Greenway at the corner of Congress Street and Purchase Street, was one of more than a dozen neighborhood businesses that participated in the Greenway Cleanup in honor of Earth Day on April 22. The cleanup consisted of raking, weeding, cleaning up benches, picking up trash and generally sprucing up the parks of the Rose Kennedy Greenway.

Bretford’s Grade-In Custom Upholstery Program Bretford launched a new Grade-In program. Through this new program, Bretford channel partners and their customers can choose

from hundreds of Momentum or Herman Miller fabrics and Greenhides Italian leather material options that are now automatically graded in to the Bretford price list. According to Stewart Long, director of operations at Bretford

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Industry Briefing Manufacturing, Inc., “For custom upholstery furniture applications, our partners and end users have traditionally purchased their own fabric and sent it to us for testing to ensure that it can be properly used with their selected Bretford soft seating products - and they can still do this. But with the Grade-In program, we now have hundreds of material options graded in to our price list. Partners can simply place one order with Bretford from the list and we will take care of the rest - material purchasing, upholstery and shipment of the completed furniture.” Long added that the new program includes changes in some of the material list prices, including decreases of up to 23 percent.

Furniture Rental Contract Awarded American Furniture Rentals (AFR) said last week that it has been awarded a contract to rent office furniture to the federal government and its agencies for their office furniture rental needs. A GSA certification identifies AFR as an organization that meets specific price point, quality and efficiency guidelines as established by the federal government. AFR has been awarded contracts of various sizes for several federal agencies including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), among others. “This certification follows a rigorous approval process,” said Michael Greenberg, commercial division manager, American Furniture Rentals. “Federal agencies can be confident that our company has been recognized as a reputable organization that adheres to stringent government guidelines.”

INSIDE MOVES Steelcase Files $400M Mixed-Securities Shelf Steelcase Inc. on Friday registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission to sell from time to time up to $400 million of debt securities, preferred stock, Class

www.mmqb.com

A common stock, warrants, stock purchase contracts or stock purchase units.

Seen:

ODDS & ENDS NOW REPPING: Ken Miller for ergoCentric Seating Systems in Michigan. NAMED: Larry Rivard as area sales manager in Southern California for Steelcase. Rivard will be based in the Steelcase’s Santa Monica WorkLife Center. Rivard is an industry veteran who was most recently regional director of new business development for Haworth. JOINED: Chris Macrobbie as VP Finance and Operations for Workwell Partners in NYC. Chris was a member of Haworth, Inc. for three years as a Dealer Business Consultant within the Dealer Development group. Prior to Haworth, he spent eighteen years at Volvo Finance North America where he held various Operational, Finance, Facilities Management, and Training and Development positions. NOW REPPING: Culley and Associates in Florida; Office Furniture Rep Group (OFRG) in Southern California and NV; and Speksource, Inc. in the Greater Chicago Area and Northern IL - all for Chromcraft Contract. JOINED: Brian Hackathorn joined Workwell Partners Project Management after spending seven years working as a corporate Interior Designer/Project Manager, with the past four years being in the New York City market. Brian has his degree in interior design and also spent seven years working for his families Design/Build Construction firm. APPROVED: Lencore, a maker of sound masking systems, announced that the underlying LonWorks® platform for its Spectra i.Net™ Networked Sound Masking System has been approved as a global standard by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC). The acceptance of the protocol and key signaling technologies underlying LonWorks® networks as ISO/IEC standards helps assure continued adoption of the platform.

Tayco, together with ASID, was host to Penny Bonda, FASID, LEED AP, and Eco-Editor of Interior Design magazine, as she educated an audience of interior design and architecture professionals about the use of green materials and their impact on the environment. Tayco’s seminar series centers on the theme of sustainability, and the design professional’s role in changing the planet. “Penny delivered a fantastic, engaging lecture that supported Tayco’s objective for the seminar series and complements our environmental position,” says Tayco President Phil Philips. “I expect that the remaining seminars will create the same level of excitement for the audience.” Following the environmental story of the events, the Gladstone, a boutique hotel in Toronto’s trendy west end, personifies how sustainable initiatives can become an integral part of a business proposition.

KI was one of six Wisconsin companies recently honored by the Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve (ESGR) for its outstanding support of National Guard and Reserve employees and their families. The Above and Beyond Award was presented to KI at the annual Wisconsin ESGR Awards Banquet on April 18 in Green Lake, Wis.

NOW REPPING: JGA Associates of Dallas for North Texas and Oklahoma for in2design, the contract grade laminate manufacturer based in Vaughan Ontario. SPOKEN: One hundred-fifty University of Minnesota design students are benefiting from the insights of legendary industrial designer Niels Diffrient. Diffrient’s U of M talk on April 20, 2009—sponsored

by Humanscale—explained the designer’s quest to improve the human experience through his work. RENEWED: Interior Design Services, Inc., of Brentwood, TN, announced that their contract as furniture provider to the HealthTrust Purchasing Group (HPG) group purchasing organization has been renewed for four more years. 6

April 27, 2009

The Monday Morning Quarterback 19


MarketPlace To place a Marketplace Ad simply go to: http://www.mmqb.com and click on “Place a Job Ad” or “Place a Classified Ad.” Questions? Call us at 847681-1199 x1. Ads close Friday 6:00 pm for Monday’s edition.

Business Development / Sales Rep. Opportunity

Work for the premiere Herman Miller dealer in the Bay Area! Key Deliverables: Demonstrate initiative by prospecting and closing sales leads within variety of commercial markets. Consistently exceed customer expectations by adding real value at each phase of the sale, by being accountable to customers, and by making and keeping commitments. Provide a consultative approach to selling by working to understand the customer’s critical business needs and by delivering appropriate solutions with a sense of purpose and urgency. Ideal Profile: Personality: Self motivated, resourceful, quick study, relationship driven, multitasker, strong work ethic, high energy, positive, assertive, detail oriented, strategic, team player, persistent, resilient. Knowledge: Prospecting, probing, influencing, closing. Comfortable with technology, at ease with C-level executives, consultative selling, creating and delivering presentations, familiar with contracts and proposals. Knowledge of contract furniture industry and related products, applications, and design concepts preferred. Motivations: Long term career, growth, recognition, money, affiliation, achievement, freedom, security. Send us your resume: pdonlon@pivotinteriors.com EOE

Seeking Experienced Project Managers and Designers Growing Company Seeks Proven Professionals with Design or Project Management Experience

Contract Furniture Dealership with growing and solid customer base continues to have a need for professionals in our Springfield, VA location. We have an ongoing need for applicants to provide outstanding customer service to government and private offices throughout the DC Metro Area. Project Managers, and designers with extensive experience with systems furniture will be considered. Typing skills, proficiency in the Microsoft Office Suite and attention to detail is necessary. In addition to the requirements above, applicants applying for CAD-Interior design positions must have experience with AutoCAD. Project Manager Positions require a valid driver’s license, a car, and the ability to pass a security clearance. Send resumes with salary requirements to Apply@JMCBusinesssystems.com. IN SUBJECT LINE WRITE: MMQB 20 The Monday Morning Quarterback

Outstanding Sales Career Opportunity Join the successful leader in office furniture sales

National Business Furniture, the 30 year leader in catalog and on-line business furniture sales has expansion opportunities for top notch outside sales representatives residing in or near Houston, Washington DC, San Francisco Bay Area, Los Angeles, and St Louis. Will consider placement in other major cities with good customer base. Stable company. No caps on commission. Generous full benefit package, car allowance, computer, solid customer base, large vendor selection, access to government contract, excellent design and customer service support. 3-years of business-to-business end-user office furniture outside sales experience required. Must be comfortable working from home office and have ability to travel within territory including use of personal vehicle. Comfortable with sales process. Well organized. 3-4 months on salary and then draw against commission Visit www.nationalbusinessfurniture.com for company information. Send resume and earnings expectations to: hr@nbf.biz Attn: OSGH

A Sales Job With Stability Unheard of! Who would hire in this economy? BodyBilt! - Chicago / Washington, D.C. / LA / So. Cal. / Houston While companies are cutting back, we are INVESTING in growth. We not only have seen growth during these slow economic times, but we are INVESTING to continue that growth. Join our team and our company, which has cultivated a brand that evokes quality! Unbelievable opportunities are within your reach at ErgoGenesis, manufacturer of BODYBILT® premium ergonomic office chairs. Excellent salary PLUS commission awaits the right candidate! Are you a Hunter that can prospect for NEW Business? We are expanding within our most successful markets. Annual compensation for this outside sales position is expected to exceed $100k. There are immediate openings for a confident, highly persuasive Sales Hunter to join our team. Coverage areas are: 1) Chicago 2) Washington, D.C. 3) LA / So. Cal. 4) Houston Benefits: Excellent Salary PLUS Commission, a Company Car, Phone, and Computer, just to name a few. Serious candidates should email resumes to: Hunter@ergogenesis.com

April 27, 2009

A Sales Job With Stability Unheard of!

Att’n: DEALER REPS - BIG SPIFFS

Who would hire in this economy? BodyBilt! - Minneapolis/St. Paul / San Diego / Philly/NJ. While companies are cutting back, we are INVESTING in growth.

Want to Maximize your earnings in this tough economy? We can help!

Join our team and our company, which has cultivated a brand that evokes quality! Unbelievable opportunities are within your reach at ErgoGenesis, manufacturer of BODYBILT® premium ergonomic office chairs. Earn an excellent salary PLUS commission! Are you a Hunter that can prospect for NEW Business? Can you also Farm existing Accounts? We are expanding within our most successful markets. Annual compensation for these outside sales positions is expected to exceed $100k. There are immediate openings for confident, highly persuasive Sales Hunter/Farmers to join our team. Coverage areas are: (1) Minneapolis/St. Paul (2) San Diego (3) Philly/NJ Benefits: Excellent Salary PLUS Commission, a Company Car, Phone, and Computer, just to name a few. Serious candidates should email resumes to: Hunter@ergogenesis.com ErgoGenesis is an EEOC/Affirmative Action company.

TERRITORY SALES MANAGER Excellent Opportunity in Los Angeles - Join Industry Leader Workrite Ergonomics, Inc., an industry leader with strong reputation for excellence in its highly-evolved ergonomic office solutions, seeks a superstar self-starter to grow the Los Angeles market. This is a great opportunity for a highly motivated, financially-focused sales “hunter” with industry experience working with dealers and presenting to end-users. Excellent income potential and benefits package. Requirements: • 3 or more years sales experience in contract furniture/office furniture industry • Capital equipment sales experience a plus • Excellent relationship-building and presentation skills • Proven ability to successfully close sales • CRM database experience For more information about our company, visit our website at www.workriteergo.com Send cover letter and resume submission to careers@workriteergo.com EOE

We are a key manufacturer of ergonomic seating, accessories and productivity enhancing work tools. We have revamped our compensation structure to maximize the return for our people in the trenches, our dealer sales people! We are offering spiffs as high as 20% of net sale on everything we carry and we guarantee our prices to be competitive with what you are currently selling. E-mail davem158@gmail.com for all the details. We are looking forward to sending you some big checks!!

Sales Positions Leading New York City Dealership Furniture Consultants, Teknion’s exclusive New York City dealership, with offices in NYC, North New Jersey, Boston and Miami, is looking to add the sales positions listed below for our NYC location. The ideal candidates will possess the following: • A minimum of 2 years experience in the contract furniture industry • A strong work ethic • Relationship driven • Strong communication and presentation skills FCI offers a very competitive compensation and benefits package including a 401k, health insurance, etc. The positions we are currently seeking are: • A + D Representative • Government Sales • New Business Development Interested candidates should contact (in strict confidence) Chris Stevenson @ 212229-4527, or e-mail: chris.stevenson@e-fci.com

Chicago Rep Group Seeking SOFT Seating Line Chicago based rep group is seeking soft seating line. The Webb Group, a multiline manufacturer representative, based in IL, with 5 active sales reps. We have recently parted ways with a major contract seating line and seeking a replacement, offering soft seating with complimentary wood guest and executive seating. We offer complimentary lines, including, but not limited to, MAiSpace and StarWall, and have several large projects requiring seating. We can be contacted by phone at 312595-9200, or by email at getwebb@aol.com

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MarketPlace Senior Sales Representative Textile sales - Northern California Luna Textiles, an innovative, international contract textile company, currently has an excellent sales opportunity for a highly motivated individual. The individual will have responsibility for the sales and service of the San Francisco/ No. California territory. The ideal candidate must have knowledge of the consultative and strategic selling process, end user sales experience, and have existing relationships with A & D, furniture manufacturers & dealer communities. Must be sales goal driven, detail oriented, independent, self motivated, and have excellent communication and interpersonal skills. Previous sales experience with textiles and knowledge of the contract furniture industry is required. Salary and benefits are commensurate with experience. Interested candidates should submit their resume along with a cover letter to info@lunatextiles.com or fax 415.252.7183.

INDEPENDENT SALES REPS WANTED BRC Canada seeks Independent Sales Representation for selected US Territories. BRC Canada, a successful high quality laminate furniture manufacturer is currently seeking Independent Sales Representatives for selected markets in the United States. BRC, established in 1979, offers a broad range of mid-market product solutions. Private Office, Desking, Reception, Tables, Ergonomic Accessories, Height Adjustable Table Systems and Educational Furniture. www.brccanada.com As well as an extensive standard product offering, BRC provides full custom manufacturing capabilities. BRC, is an ISO certified facility. All BRC products are ANSI BIFMA tested and certified. BRC, maintains a number of Environmental Certifications with lab testing and documented practices readily available for review. Motivated Sales Professionals should have an established dealer network and contacts. High Commissions, New Image And Literature, Spiff Programs, Quick Ship, Dealer Rebate Programs, GSA, State Contracts, Dealer Display And Sample Programs plus much more available. Interested parties should contact Steven Geiger, Vice President Sales, 1.877.260.4309 (X109) or 905.873.8509 (X109). steveng@brccanada.com

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GSA BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT MANAGER

GM Position with Equity in Orlando Fl

BRC Canada seeks GSA Business Development Manager

This is a great opportunity for the individual who wants to own a Steelcase dealership.

BRC Canada, a successful high quality laminate manufacturer is currently seeking to fill the corporate position of GSA Business Development Manager. BRC, established in 1979, offers a broad range of mid-market products. Private Office, Desking, Reception, Tables, Ergonomic Accessories, Height Adjustable Table Systems, Educational Furniture. www.brccanada.com The GSA Business Development Manager will be responsible to solicit Government opportunities through direct contact with end users and/or GSA specialty dealers. Partner with the existing BRC Independent Rep. sales groups. Reporting directly to the Vice President Sales, this position will be home based, but not restricted in geographic location. Overnight travel will be required. The candidate will have a solid understanding of the GSA process and experience selling to Government agencies. Excellent negotiation, organizational, written/verbal communication skills and be able to work independently. Compensation includes base salary, car allowance, commission and bonus plan plus all expenses. Send resume to Steven Geiger, Vice President Sales, steveng@ brccanada.com, (T)877.260.4309

Contracts Manager Join the Management Team of this 20+ year old Washington DC Area Dealership Maryland-based contract furniture dealership seeks Contracts Manager to prepare, negotiate and administer GSA, state/local government, and commercial contracts, teaming/partnering agreements and other contract-related documents. Interact with government contracting officers, suppliers and management at all levels. Provide interpretation of solicitation/RFP requirements. Act as knowledge source to support sales & operations staff. Disseminate information regarding contract status. Working knowledge of the FAR and GSA Multiple Award Schedules a must. Past work experience with GSA’s Integrated Workplace Acquisition Center desired. Must possess excellent negotiation, organizational and written/verbal communication skills coupled with the ability to work independently. We offer a stable work environment, long-term career opportunity and competitive compensation & benefits package. Submit your resume and salary requirements to learn more about this exciting opportunity. Confidentiality assured. Email your resume to: Lizwolf@mmqb.com Put Department V in the subject line of your email.

SERVICES Specification Services Design and specification services for dealers and manufactures.

Storr Office Environments is seeking an individual to lead a newly acquired dealership and aggressively grow market share in the Central Florida market area. The ideal candidate will have prior sales management experience and ability to develop and direct a leadership team. As a Leader with Storr you will work with other experienced leaders from other Storr dealerships and sell a comprehensive portfolio of products and services. The successful candidate will have an opportunity to purchase a majority interest in the company. For more information about Storr check our web page at www.storr.com Please e-mail your resume to: tvande@storr.com

Servex-US is an independent design and specification department for Steelcase, Herman Miller, Allsteel, Teknion, AIS, Allsteel, Knoll and many more. We have 20 full time designers that work with over 500 dealers primarily in North America. We work on a per-project basis and charge $42 an hour using 2020 CAP and Giza. As dealers adjust to the economic climate Servex can assist you in designing and specifying your projects. We offer fast turnaround times and affordable rates. We also have a photo rendering department that can work from CAP or Giza files to produce renderings at $55 an hour. Contact Nick Fernandez: 212 647 0110 or email nfernandez@servex-us.com. Visit our website at www.servex-us.com.

Senior Sales Executive Manhattan

Rendering Services

Senior Sales position for established New York City sales executive

Win Business with Renderings from OfficeScapes

Innovant, a market leading furniture manufacturer based in New York is seeking an accomplished sales executive in the New York area to sell to tier-1 clients and design firms. The candidate needs to be dynamic, established in NYC and thrive in a professional team environment. Our position as market leader in the manufacture of trading desks has built an impressive client and installation list over 20 years, but it is our recent and explosive success in upscale open plan desking and casegoods that provides the greatest opportunity. Contact Bruce Wells, Sales Director at bwells@innovant.com or 212.929.4883.

Rendering Resources OfficeScapes® Competition is fierce these days, so use every tool at your disposal. Don’t lose business because your competitor wowed your prospect with a full-color rendering while your proposal offered only line drawings. It’s easy, fast, and affordable to out-render your competition with renderings from OfficeScapes! • You provide a sketch - we do the rest! Talk with us briefly about your needs and we’re ready to get to work. • We utilize state of the art software. • 24 hour turnaround AND you get to review/revise. • Affordable; renderings as low as $100, and we take credit cards! • Customizable: add carpet, wall covering, windows, lighting and views. • Finish/Presentation boards available, too: virtual or actual Contact Shelby Aldrich 303-574-1115 or email saldrich@officescapes.com To see examples of our work, visit our website www.structuredweb.com/ sw/swchannel/CustomerCenter/documents/2719/3519/RenderingPortfolio.pdf”.

Independent Rep Groups Wanted Southwest, Midwest & Other Territories Open Novikoff Furniture Limited, a high-end wood casegoods, conference tables, reception, tellerlines, seating and custom solutions manufacturer for over 45 years, is seeking experienced Independent Sales Representatives in our Southwest and Midwest territories. Other territories are available as well. Candidates must have a proven track record in growing market share for your manufacturers as well as established relationships with the Dealers and A&D community in your marketplace. A showroom would be a plus! We offer a very aggressive commission structure, excellent customer service and sales support for our field sales force. If interested in a real growth opportunity, please contact Paul Berry at 800.780.0982 or e-mail pberry@novikoff.com. Please visit www.novikoff.com to learn more!

April 27, 2009

The Monday Morning Quarterback 21


MarketPlace BUSINESS OPPORTUNITIES Business Development Opportunity Looking for qualified individuals focused on healthcare and education markets - Is that you? TechlineUSA, a manufacturer of laminate millwork and modular office furniture is seeking individuals or interested companies to market our products. We are looking for qualified individuals that are focused on healthcare and education markets to establish and grow business. Our brand is nationally known by architects and facility managers. Our products have a reputation for high quality and we are known for consistent, on-time delivery, at a fair price. Our most successful dealers are those that develop relationships with healthcare owners, architects and contractors. Many are located in secondary markets, but are successful because of their ability to develop repeat business. We seek people that are entrepreneurial, resourceful, high energy, strategic, knowledgeable, relationship builders. Experience with construction or sales of equipment to end-users are a definite advantage. To learn more about us, visit www.techlineusa.com. If interested, please email us at contactus@techlineusa.com and we will set up a phone interview.

PARTS FOR SALE Worksurfaces- Steelcase, Haworth, Herman Miller

Check out our straights, corners, contours, curved corners, transactions, 3mm edgebanding, 90 & 180 degree edges, 1-1/4 & 1-1/2 thickness, etc. Whether you need 10 or 10,000 worksurfaces, National Office offers a limited lifetime warranty and lead-times to meet your project deadlines. Our extensive finish library is guaranteed to satisfy your customer’s need for matching existing worksurfaces or creating a new look. For projects attaining LEED certification, we offer Sierra Pine SDF which is formaldehyde free and made from 100% recycled wood. Let us bid your next project. For more information, samples and prices contact our wholesale division: 800-321-6165 www.gen2officefurniture.com, a product of National Office, Cleveland, Ohio.

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22 The Monday Morning Quarterback

April 27, 2009

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The Monday Monring Quarterback