ABOVE: From left: Adam Krzanowski, Ricarda Kusch, Dieter Kusch, Rafal Chwast, Roman Przbylski
It felt as though 2018 was the year of ‘strategic partnerships’ between furniture manufacturers – think Steelcase and Orangebox, Haworth and BuzziSpace or Herman Miller and Framery. Surely things would calm down in 2019. Well, not if the first couple of weeks of the New Year are anything to go by!
As we went to press (literally on the morning of signing-off this issue), the Nowy Styl Group announced that it is taking over Kusch+Co. We felt we simply had to ‘hold the presses’ and bring you another major furniture market scoop.
For German seating specialist Kusch+Co, this means an expansion of the company’s range of operation, and for the Nowy Styl Group a growth of its share in the European office market and a strong entry into the promising health and transport segments. The integration of the two companies is expected to bring a number of synergies.
The completed transaction is yet another major move by the acquisitional Polish Group, who took over Swiss company Sitag in 2015, Rohde & Grahl in 2013 and German brand Grammer Office in 2011. ‘This is the next step in a consistent implementation of the Group’s strategy,’ Adam Krzanowski, President of the Nowy Styl Group, says. ‘We are highly advanced in integrating the companies we acquired in previous years, so we decided that this is a good time for another move.’
Kusch+Co is a global premium brand, well recognised in design and architectural circles, and offers a strong portfolio of products for workplace and public facilities, complementary to the offering of the Nowy Styl Group. Seats and benches from Kusch+Co can be found in the waiting rooms of more than 240 passenger terminals around the world, including Frankfurt Airport, Roissy-Charles-de-Gaulle Airport in Paris and Stockholm Arlanda Airport
‘Kusch+Co is one of the leading global suppliers of furnishings for airports and carries out projects with the biggest architectural studios in the world. Deep integration will allow us to further strengthen the role of Kusch+Co in that sector by providing access to the Group’s broad product portfolio, increasing the scale of operation and optimising production costs,’ emphasises Rafał Chwast, Vice President and Finance Director for the Group.
‘Together with Kusch+Co, we also want to develop the highly specialised health segment – I am sure that with the competence and many years of experience of our new partner combined with our production capacity, we can offer solutions in this area that are even better for customers,’ Adam continues.
‘We are entering a new, very attractive business sector, thereby increasing the diversification of our operations,’ Rafal adds. ‘The European market for medical care is big, and the demographic trends determine its further growth.’
Contemporary treatment facilities include not only hospitals, but also nursing homes, homes for seniors and other specialised medical and care centres. Their furnishings must meet highly functional, sanitary and visual standards, while the climate of the interior must build up a sense of freedom, safety and comfort for those staying there.
‘The people that I meet at the Nowy Styl Group, their passion and enterprise are extremely inspiring. I feel that we understand one another very well, especially on the basis of values and our vision of the business. I am consistently impressed by the production plants, the centre for innovation and the offices of the Nowy Styl Group in Poland and I can see how our merger offers manifold opportunities for development,’ says Ricarda Kusch, CEO of Kusch+Co, who will continue to manage the business.
‘The reasons for the sale of our company, founded 80 years ago, with its 250 employees and approximately 40 million Euros in sales, are, on the one hand, a noticeably increased competitiveness in a strongly globalising competitive environment and, on the other hand, the considerably improved opportunities for the traditional Kusch brand in the future in terms of product range, service and sales.’
The 16 companies that make up the Nowy Styl Group, as well as the 29 showrooms in Europe and the Middle East and 3,500 dealers around the world will now becoming part of Kusch+Co’s distribution network. As a result of the transaction, the Group will expand further, with a modern production facility in Hallenberg, a skilled crew of 250 employees and long-standing partners and dealers selling a variety of Kusch+Co products around the world.