Architecture & Design, Lakeshore, and Manufacturing

Furniture maker sells to out-of-state buyer

August 14, 2019
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John Fellowes
John Fellowes. Courtesy Fellowes Brands

An out-of-state provider of workplace solutions has acquired a 51-year-old office furniture manufacturer in the region.

Itasca, Illinois-based Fellowes Brands acquired Holland-based Trendway Corporation, according to the companies today.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

Founded in 1968, Trendway was purchased by the Heeringa family in 1973 and has been under the leadership of Don Heeringa for 46 years. He most recently was chair and majority owner of the employee stock ownership plan, or ESOP, company.

Heeringa announced his retirement from Trendway in conjunction with the news of the acquisition.

“We credit our lasting success of over 50 years to our incredibly talented and passionate employees and their unwavering commitment to our customers,” Heeringa said.

“We are pleased we have found a partner like Fellowes, a fourth-generation family company, with common values and entrepreneurial spirit. As I approached retirement, my desire was to find a way to ensure the future growth and success of Trendway. I take great comfort in knowing that Trendway, along with Fellowes’ ownership, will ensure the positive future of the company.”

Trendway will continue to operate from Holland under the leadership of Bill Bundy, interim president, who previously served as Trendway’s president and CEO from 2007-16.

 Mark Kinsler, former president of Trendway since 2014, resigned in July.

“The Trendway family is proud to join the Fellowes family of brands,” Bundy said. “We look forward to the continued partnership with Trendway’s outstanding independent rep sales force and strong dealer relationships.”

John Fellowes, president and CEO of Fellowes Brands, said his company is “excited” to welcome Trendway to its portfolio of brands.

“The Heeringa family has built Trendway through a commitment to strong values, good people, responsiveness to customers and care for those around (them) — which aligns with our own family’s values and approach,” Fellowes said.

“We plan to lead this business into its next chapter with a similar spirit to its deep roots, while bringing greater capabilities and competitiveness to its future efforts.”

Fellowes Brands first expanded into contract furniture through its acquisition of ESI in November 2017. The addition of Trendway to Fellowes’ portfolio creates a broader offering to this channel, Fellowes said.

As part of the deal, Fellowes is acquiring Trendway’s 500,000-square-foot furniture manufacturing facility, which will complement Fellowes’ Bankers Box factory in Itasca, Illinois.

Fellowes Brands

Founded in 1917 by the Fellowes family, Fellowes Brands offers “broad-based business solutions” to help professionals “be their best and feel their best.”

It makes a variety of products: shredders, laminators, binding machines, cutters and trimmers, sit-stand solutions, seating, ergonomic accessories, air purifiers, privacy filters, office organization tools, computer accessories and more.

About half of its revenue, which was not disclosed, comes from international markets.

Trendway

Founded in 1968, Trendway Corporation offers a range of office furnishings: panel systems, filing, storage, casegoods, seating, architectural solutions with moveable walls and more.

It has also supplied government customers as a GSA contractor for more than 20 years.

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