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Simmons buys Comfor-Pedic line

By BedTimes / August 2007

Atlanta-based bedding maker Simmons is acquiring the Comfor–Pedic line of memory foam mattresses and pillows from Comfor Products in Kent, Wash.

The acquisition was scheduled for completion by the end of July. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Comfor-Pedic’s five-bed line will enable Simmons to expand its offerings in the specialty sleep market and will give Comfor–Pedic beds the exposure they never had as products of a small, family–run independent mattress manufacturer.

“We are so excited to join a company that is also rich in history. You are combining more than 100 years of innovation in the industry. We didn’t have the distribution and the brand to go to market and do what we knew we could do with the Comfor–Pedic product,” said Scott Smalling, Comfor–Pedic chief executive officer.

The beds, in a suggested retail price range of $1,899 to $6,999 for queen size, will be marketed as ComforPedic by Simmons. Initially, the ComforPedic by Simmons beds will be constructed in Portland, Ore., and High Point, N.C. The products will be distributed to Simmons’ warehouses nationally.

“Manufacturing and selling foam mattresses has its own unique set of characteristics, which is why we’re excited about the addition of the Comfor–Pedic team’s expertise to our capabilities set,” said Charlie Eitel, Simmons chairman and CEO. “We look forward to leveraging Comfor–Pedic’s more than 60 years of foam product innovation across our visco and latex offerings. Comfor–Pedic, clearly, represents the next generation of memory foam.”

Foam mattresses and specialty bedding are the fastest growing segments of the industry and are important to Simmons’ growth, Eitel said. And the ComforPedic by Simmons mattresses incorporate what the companies’ call the next–generation of memory foam with better heat dissipation and quicker recovery.

Comfor Products was founded in 1946 as Industrial Rubber & Supply Inc., specializing in foam products. It introduced its first mattresses in 2004.

Comfor-Pedic’s core team of executives will continue to operate as before, but the group will be known as the Specialty Products Division of Simmons, currently anchored by Simmons’ Natural Care line of latex mattresses.

Smalling has been named president of the group and will be heavily involved in the design and creation of new bedding.

His team includes: Jack Squires, executive vice president of Specialty Products, formerly Comfor–Pedic’s president; Butch Webster, vice president of Specialty Products for business development, formerly executive vice president of Comfor–Pedic; Al Bromberg, director of Specialty Products for the East Region, formerly vice president of the East Region for Comfor–Pedic; Jim Lambert, director of Specialty Products for the Central Region, formerly vice president of the Central Region for Comfor–Pedic; and Rick Vander Woude, director of Specialty Products for the West Region, formerly vice president of the West Region for Comfor–Pedic. Anne Kozel, currently brand director for Simmons’ Natural Care brand, also will serve as brand director for ComforPedic by Simmons.

Members of the Specialty Products Division report to Steve Fendrich, Simmons executive vice president of sales.

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