Finnair and Marimekko Launch Design Collaboration

HELSINKI AND VANTAA, Finland, Oct. 27, 2012 /CNW/ - Finnair and Finnish design house Marimekko are teaming up to enhance the air travel experience with a new design partnership. From spring 2013 all Finnair aircraft will feature a Marimekko for Finnair collection of textiles and tableware, featuring Marimekko's classic patterns. The Marimekko for Finnair collection is specially designed to add a light and fresh visual and tactile dimension to the onboard experience, while lightening the airline's carbon footprint as well.

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Two of Finnair's long-haul aircraft will also wear livery based on Marimekko designs.  An Airbus A340 featuring  Maija Isola's iconic Unikko floral print from 1964 is already operating between Helsinki and Finnair's Asian destinations, and it will be followed by another aircraft in Marimekko livery in spring 2013.

"Finnair has a strong design heritage, and this cooperation brings our design thinking to a new level," says Mika Vehviläinen, Finnair CEO. "Our goal is to become a design airline, and bring our customers unique experiences for all five senses. Cooperation with Marimekko is an important step towards this target. Finnair aircraft will become roving ambassadors of timeless Finnish design and creativity, giving our customers a special experience when they fly with us."

"We hope that Marimekko's sympathetic Unikko poppy flowers flying up in the sky as well as our other iconic prints as a part of the in-flight experience bring joy to people around the world," says Mika Ihamuotila, Marimekko CEO. "Lately, we have wanted to connect Marimekko's colourful design and fashion with surprising parties and forms of art, such as ballet, modern dance or visual arts. Now it is time to do something unforeseen up in the sky. I believe that the Marimekko and Finnair design collaboration will bring to hectic and often grey air travel joy, peace of mind and beautiful memories."

During the three-year collaboration, an exclusive selection of Marimekko design products are also available for Finnair customers in in-flight sales and the Finnair Plus Shop.

In addition to adding value to the customer experience, both companies look forward to the collaboration helping build more awareness of their brands. Both companies have a long established presence in Japan but are growing rapidly in other Asian markets, China in particular.

"Finnair is a natural partner for Marimekko, as in my opinion it has been the first airline in the world to lift up design and place it strongly at the center of its service," continues Ihamuotila. "With our collaboration we want to show how design can help improve the well-being of people in different moments of life. Furthermore, our design collaboration with Finnair supports our growth strategy, particularly in the Asia-Pacific region, which is one of Marimekko's key market areas."

"Both of these brands are about bringing positivity, high quality and peace of mind to customers," adds Vehviläinen. "We believe this collaboration will help generate new experiences and lasting, positive memories for a whole new generation of Finnair passengers in Asia."

About Finnair

Finnair is specialised in fast connections between Europe and Asia via Helsinki. The airline carries more than eight million passengers annually and connects 11 cities in Asia with more than 50 destinations in Europe. Finnair, a pioneer in sustainable flying, operates a young, modern fleet and is the first airline ever to place in the worldwide Carbon Disclosure Project's Leadership Index. The only Nordic carrier with a 4-star Skytrax ranking, Finnair has also won the World Airline Award for Best Airline Northern Europe for the past three years running. Finnair is a member of the oneworld alliance.

About Marimekko

Marimekko is a Finnish textile and clothing design company renowned first and foremost for its original prints and colors. The company designs and manufactures high-quality household goods ranging from interior decoration textiles to tableware as well as clothing, bags, and other accessories. When Marimekko was founded in 1951, its unprecedented printed fabrics gave it a strong and unique identity. Marimekko products are sold in about 40 countries. In 2011, sales of the company's brands were some EUR 170 million with net sales of EUR 77 million. At the end of the year, there were 90 Marimekko stores. The key markets are North America, Northern Europe and the Asia-Pacific region. The Group has about 500 employees. Marimekko's shares are quoted on NASDAQ OMX Helsinki Ltd.

SOURCE: Finnair

For further information:

Finnair Media Desk tel. +358-9-818-4020, comms@finnair.com
Marimekko Corporate Communications, tel. +358-9-758-7293,
piia.kumpulainen@marimekko.fi

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