Chinese company set to acquire Mor Furniture for $68 million

RUGAO, China – Healthcare Co., Ltd., a major  home furnishings player based here, has signed a letter of intent to acquire 36-store Mor Furniture for Less, the San Diego-based, Top 100 home furnishings retailer. The company expects to pay more than $68.4 million for the retailer, and the transaction is expected to be completed by the end of October, officials said.

Healthcare said Mor Furniture will operate with its own team of executives with direct reports to China. Healthcare Co., Ltd. owns MLily USA, a mattress manufacturer based in Knoxville, Tenn.

The Mor acquisition will give Healthcare a direct pipeline to better understand U.S. retailers and customers, officials said.

“The direct day-to-day contact with consumers through Mor’s vibrant retail locations gives us the opportunity to gather critical information about consumer shopping behavior in the U.S.,” said James Ni, chairman andCEO of Healthcare Co. “Direct consumer interaction will help us hone our OEM product development and better serve our growing network of customers throughout the world.”

Healthcare will acquire the chain from Mor Furniture founder Richard Haux Sr. and a number of other members of the Haux family. Haux founded the company in 1977 as a small waterbed store. Today, Mor operates large-format stores in seven states: California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Idaho, New Mexico and Arizona.

Mor Furniture has estimated annual sales of more than $310 million, officials said.

The Mor acquisition will be the second retail acquisition by Healthcare in the last 18 months but its first in the United States. Last year, Healthcare acquired Maxcolchon, a Spanish bedding manufacturer and retailer, and currently operates 57 stores across Spain.

Healthcare Co. is a global home furnishings player with 20 holding companies globally. Based in China it operates factories in there and in Serbia and Thailand. In addition to the United States, the company serves markets in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.