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Herman Miller Boosted By North American, Niche Markets

ZEALAND, NETHERLANDS: North America’s rebounding market and positive performance from niche categories has led to a strong end for Herman Miller Inc.’s 2016 fiscal year.

Herman Miller, a Zeeland-based company, closed its fourth quarter ended 28th May with $582.6 million in sales, with a 6 percent increase compared to the same quarter in the previous fiscal year. In this quarter, Herman Miller’s adjusted earnings also increased to 56 cents per share as compared to previous year’s 47 cents per share. President and CEO Brian Walker said in a conference call that North America’s revitalizing market is the main driver of the office furniture manufacturer’s fiscal year 2016 as a whole.

Herman Miller’s health care and commercial office markets’ “Notable strength” also drove growth, Walker added. “In particular, we had one of our best years in health care in recent memory,” he said.

The company slightly outpaced financial analysts’ expectation of $2.25 billion net sales with $2.26 billion net sales to close its 2016 fiscal year. The company recorded a 5.7-percent increase in sales in the 2016 fiscal year.

Even though Herman Miller exceeded analysts’ expectations for its fourth quarter of 2016, their sales in the consumer segment dropped 2 percent to $78 million due to inventories and accounts receivables, reported MiBiz.

“From a broad view, certainly the profitability we saw in the fourth quarter was not only disappointing, it’s just unacceptable — we can’t be there for long,” said Walker. Herman Miller is expected to continue to see earning increase with new orders jumping approximately $606 million, 9 percent higher than last year.

Executives in Herman Miller expects a 6-percent to 10-percent increase in sales in its first quarter of its 2017 fiscal year which translates to between $600 million to $620 million. According to a consensus estimate of Yahoo Finance however, financial analysts predict that Herman Miller will incur a softer quarter, with sales of about $590 million.