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Ekornes Reports Sales Increase For First Three Quarters

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Ekornes Inc., a Norwegian producer of residential seating, reports that sales for North America were up six percent in U.S. dollars for the first nine months compared with the prior year. Operating revenues for the first nine months of 2008 in the U.S. and Canada were down 1.4 percent from NOK (Norwegian krone) 400.6 million to NOK 395 million. “We are diligently working to expand our distributor network and to pursue a vigorous marketing strategy to counteract a decline in North American sales,” Peter Bjerregaard, president of Ekornes Inc. says. “The strong influx of orders in the first three months of the year laid the foundation for solid revenues in the third quarter, although October sales weakened considerably.” “Company-wide, sales of Stressless® chairs and sofas increased 5.5 percent over the first nine months of 2008,” he says. “The weakening of the Norwegian krone and strengthening of the U.S. dollar over the past couple of months has made it possible to turn the company’s foreign exchange positions in a positive direction.” Companywide, in the third quarter of 2008, the Norwegian company reported generating gross operating revenues of NOK 624.3 million compared with 616.6 million last year, an increase of 1.3 percent. For the first nine months, companywide operating revenues were NOK 1,928.2 million, an increase of NOK 41.7 million or 2.2 percent compared with the same period for 2007. Orders were worth NOK 1,848 million, a 0.3 percent increase of over the same period last year. The order reserve as of Sept. 30, 2008, totaled NOK 215 million, compared with NOK 192 million at the same point last year. Established in 1934 in Sunnmore, Norway, Ekornes is the largest furniture manufacturer in Scandinavia with brand names such as Ekornes, Stressless® and Svane®. Products include Stressless® recliners, sofas, loveseats and accessories; Ekornes Collection sofas; and Svane® mattresses. Known as the Innovators of Comfort™, the company’s Stressless® seating is endorsed by the American Chiropractic Association for proper head and lumbar support. The world-famous Stressless® recliner features a patented system that adjusts automatically, allowing body weight to determine the proper level of support. Products are designed and manufactured at seven factories in Norway and are sold in over 30 countries. Corporate offices in New Jersey serve North America. For more information, visit www.ekornes.com.

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