Knoll Goes Public

Knoll Goes Public

Oliver
Dec 13, 2004

Who says old furniture companies aren't sexy? It's very cool to have 30 pieces in MoMa's permanent design collection, but it's even cooler to have all that AND to have a listing on the New York Stock Exchange.

At least that must be what they're thinking over at Knoll, the poster child for mid-century modern office furniture, as they're taking their act public this week to the tune of $165 million.

Then again, one might wonder: the company seemed to be doing pretty well for the last 66 years without a bunch of Wall Street analysts telling them what to do.

We can already hear the analysts on the confernece call: "Yes, we do like Mr. Noguchi's new resin and wood chair, but our numbers suggest that the product is low margin and likely to pressure fourth quarter earnings. Perhaps you could ask him to get rid of the wood and substitute a lower cost plastic?"

Don't get us wrong, we're all for capitalism, but one of the great mysteries of free markets is how and when they produce great design.....

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