Sleep Number

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Sleep Number
S&P 600 Component
Founded1987; 34 years ago (1987) (as Select Comfort)
FoundersRobert "Bob" Walker
JoAnn Walker
HeadquartersMinneapolis, Minnesota, U.S.
Number of locations
579 (Dec. 2018)[1]
Key people
Shelly Ibach (CEO), Pete Bils
ProductsSleep Number Smart Bed adjustable mattresses and bedding
Number of employees
4,220 (Dec. 2018)[1]
A "sleep number" store in Miamisburg, Ohio.

Sleep Number is a U.S.-based manufacturer that makes the Sleep Number and Comfortaire beds, as well as foundations and bedding accessories. The company is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota.[2] In addition to its Minnesota headquarters, Sleep Number has manufacturing and distribution facilities in South Carolina and Utah. As of 2018, the company employed 4,220 people across the United States.

In 1980, the category of adjustable air-supported sleep systems was invented by a private company, Comfortaire Corporation of South Carolina.[3] Bob Walker left Comfortaire and formed a new company in 1987 called Select Comfort. Select Comfort acquired the Comfortaire Corporation, a major competitor, in January 2013.[4] In March 2017, Select Comfort announced that they would no longer offer the Comfortaire lineup of Air Beds to their third party retailers/dealers.[5] In November 2017, Select Comfort Corporation changed their corporate name to Sleep Number Corporation.[6]

The company's TV commercials used to feature actress Lindsay Wagner.[7] Other endorsers include conservative radio talk show hosts Glenn Beck, Paul Harvey and Laura Ingraham; Rush Limbaugh also previously advertised the product, but the company pulled its advertising in the wake of the Rush Limbaugh–Sandra Fluke controversy.[8]

Sleep Number was founded in 1987 as Select Comfort by Robert "Bob" Walker and his wife JoAnn Walker. In 2014, Bob Walker was convicted by a jury of fraud, tax evasion, witness tampering and conspiracy for repeatedly misleading investors about the prospects for success of an alternative energy company he founded, Bixby Energy.[9] He was sentenced to 25 years in prison.

As of December 2011, Sleep Number holds 23 issued or pending U.S. patents and 40 issued or pending foreign patents for its products.[10] Sleep Number products are sold through 579 company-owned stores located across the United States; direct marketing operations; and online at The current CEO is Shelly Ibach. In September 2017, According to the Global Mattress Toppers market research report, Sleep Number was among the key players of Mattress Toppers market.[11][12]

Sleep Number Bed[edit]

The company manufactures the Sleep Number bed, an adjustable air mattress. The "Sleep Number setting" is a setting that adjusts the firmness of the mattress, adjusted by air pressure, with higher numbers (up to 100) denoting higher pressure and more firmness. Sleep Number's latest line of bed, the 360 Smart Bed launched in 2017.[13]

Legal Issues and Controversy[edit]

In 2005, Sleepy's, which is now Mattress Firm, sued Select Comfort, currently known as Sleep Number, for disparaging the quality and comfort of Personal Preference beds made by Sleepy's, and said Sleepy’s offered inferior warranties. The case revolved around whether or not Select Comfort violated a 2005 contract that let Sleepy’s sell a Select Comfort product, while Select Comfort sold an arguably superior product in its own stores. The case was originally dismissed in 2015 by U.S. District Judge Joanna Seybert in Central Islip, New York but later revived by the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2018 after finding out that the lower court misinterpreted part of the New York law. The appeals court also threw out a $2.63 million legal fee award for Sleep Number.[14] In 2015, a class action lawsuit was filed against Sleep Number and Leggett & Platt accusing the companies of failing to uphold the warranty and fix a bed they sold to customers, David and Katina Spade. The suit claims there were several other customers who experienced similar issues.[15]

On November 9, 2019 Dires LLC, the legal entity that sells the Personal Comfort Bed, filed a lawsuit in Minnesota state court accusing Sleep Number of monopolization, tortious interference, deceptive trade and unjust enrichment. This stems out of a previous court ruling stating that Sleep Number has no trademark rights to the phrase “number bed.” The new lawsuit claims that Sleep Number falsely told Google that it owns the trademark rights for "number bed," causing Google to deny Dires the use of the phrase to attain more clicks to its website. Dires also accused Sleep Number of targeting it with false, misleading and defamatory reviews and comments about its products. They provided evidence of Sleep Number employees posting false and negative comments about its products on Facebook and YouTube.[16]


  1. ^ a b "Sleep Number Corporation Form 10-K". Securities and Exchange Commission. 2018.
  2. ^ "Select Comfort moving headquarters to downtown Minneapolis". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2018-10-27.
  3. ^ "Comfortaire History".
  4. ^ "Select Comfort buys Comfortaire in $15.5 million deal – Furniture Today".
  5. ^ Select Comfort to close Comfortaire, Third Party Retail Business.
  6. ^ "Select Comfort Changes Name to Sleep Number". Retrieved 2017-12-21.
  7. ^ "Select Comfort – Simple Solution". YouTube. Retrieved April 26, 2012.
  8. ^ "Rush Limbaugh in hot water with sponsors after 'slut' remark". MSNBC. March 2, 2012. Archived from the original on May 1, 2012.
  9. ^ "Judge sentences ex-CEO to 25 years in Bixby fraud". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2018-08-30.
  10. ^ "Select Comfort Corporation Form 10-K". Securities and Exchange Commission. 2011.
  11. ^ "Global Mattress Toppers Market Data Survey Report 2025". Market.Biz. Retrieved 2017-10-16.
  12. ^ Simpson, James. "Global Mattress Toppers Market 2017: Select Comfort Corporation, Serta, Tempur-Pedic, Sealy and Simmons | Reporter Day - Daily News Updates". Retrieved 2017-10-16.
  13. ^ "Sleep Number's new 360 smart bed automatically adjusts to your sleep position". Retrieved 2019-04-30.
  14. ^ "US court revives the Mattress Firm defamation case against Sleep Number". Retrieved 2020-01-14.
  15. ^ "Class action filed over Sleep Number Beds' warranties". Retrieved 2019-12-30.
  16. ^ "KC-area bed manufacturer accuses Sleep Number of dirty pool". Retrieved 2019-12-31.

External links[edit]