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High Point's Ecostyle Pavillion To Expand

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After launching the first eco-friendly home furnishings pavilion at a residential tradeshow at the Spring High Point Market, Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. (MMPI) and the Sustainable Furniture Council are planning for an even greater presence at the upcoming Fall High Point Market, October 1-7, 2007. “We were thrilled when MMPI approached us before the last High Point Market to build the first eco-friendly home furnishings pavilion for the residential market,” said Gerry Cooklin, founder and CEO of South Cone Trading Company and president of the Sustainable Furniture Council. “The reaction we have had since then has been overwhelming, and we are looking forward to expanding our efforts at the Fall High Point Market.” “Since the Spring High Point Market, our membership has grown from 43 members to 85 members,” added Susan Inglis, president of From the Mountain and treasurer of the Sustainable Furniture Council. “We truly feel we are reaching the industry in a substantive way and are building awareness for a critical issue facing us all.” The EcoStyle Pavilion will again be located on the first (top) floor of the Suites at Market Square in the heart of the High Point Market. The pavilion will provide a centralized location for companies to showcase their eco-friendly products to buyers seeking sustainable products. Participants in the pavilion will demonstrate that style and sustainability can and do co-exist and are becoming more readily available to consumers. The Sustainable Furniture Council will have a booth in the pavilion for people to come by and learn more about the organization’s mission and how they can get involved. “Based on the positive response coming out of last market when we launched our eco-friendly pavilion, we have doubled the space for this upcoming Fall Market,” said Karen Olson, vice president of marketing for Merchandise Mart Properties. “We have no doubt we will fill this space.” Participants in the pavilion will benefit from a comprehensive marketing program that includes direct mail pieces to more than 60,000 buyers, trade advertising in all key publications, a special section in market directories, telemarketing, and email marketing outreach. MMPI and the Sustainable Furniture Council will again produce the EcoStyle Map to help buyers find green products at High Point Market. There will also be a party in the Century Courtyard in Market Square on Thursday, October 5 to celebrate the importance of green in the residential home furnishings industry. Retailers, such as Dennis Rose of Eclectic Home, expressed their excitement about the first program to guide buyers in sourcing eco-friendly products in the home furnishings industry. “I think it is great that Merchandise Mart Properties and the High Point Market are on the forefront of introducing this new category and bringing to light the importance of sustainability in the home furnishings industry,” said Rose. “And, organizing vendors in one area certainly makes it easier for buyers.” Buyers may shop the EcoStyle pavilion throughout the Fall High Point Market that runs, Monday, October 1 through Sunday, October 7. “The market for sustainable products is growing quickly,” said Olson. “So, we see our EcoStyle initiative as having greater importance with each subsequent High Point Market. High Point is already the world’s home for home furnishings, and now we’re excited to establish High Point as the home for green home furnishings as well.” Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc. (MMPI) is a trade show and property management firm, specializing in managing buildings devoted to wholesale showrooms and commercial office space. MMPI produces more than 300 trade shows, market events and conferences each year. MMPI manages The Merchandise Mart and 350 West Mart Center in Chicago; Market Square, the Suites at Market Square, Hamilton Market, Plaza Suites, Furniture Plaza and the National Furniture Mart in High Point, N.C.; the Architects & Designers Building and 7 W New York in New York; the Boston Design Center in Boston; the L.A. Mart in Los Angeles; and the Washington Design Center and Federal Center Southwest in Washington, D.C. Vornado Realty Trust, owner of MMPI, based in New York City, is a fully integrated equity real estate investment trust. Vornado’s common shares are listed on the New York Stock Exchange and are traded under the symbol VNO. The Sustainable Furniture Council is a non-profit industry association committed to promoting sustainable practices within the home furnishings industry and raising awareness among consumers and buyers. They believe that sustainable practices are those that are best for the environment, local economies and social equity. The first meeting of the Sustainable Furniture Council was held at the October 2005 High Point Market.

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