Perspective with Koray Malhan

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For those of you paying attention, you will have observed that we have a wonderful mix of personalities featured in our monthly Perspective feature. We have had a facilities manager, dealer, end user client, property agent and so on. This month we have travelled 2,000 miles to hear from Koleksiyon, a very established firm in Turkey and mainland Europe, but also making lots of positive noise in the UK and, indeed, worldwide. People advised us that we should speak to Koleksiyon’s Brand and Design Director, Koray Malhan – so here are some of his thoughts.

What products are you working on right now?

We have been working with HOK’s product design team on a new series of furniture for educational areas as well as a new approach for an alternative work bench solution.

How long has the business been established?

Koleksiyon started off in a small metal atelier in 1972 and was established as a brand in 1980.

How many staff do you employ?

Koleksiyon has 750 employees worldwide.

When you say worldwide, how many locations do you have?

We operate in more than 30 locations globally – with a turnover of above 60 Million USD.

What do you think is the most challenging/interesting issue facing the design industry now?

The most interesting issue facing the design industry is to have the courage to investigate novel materials and new production methods to achieve much more sustainable offers to present to the market.

How much more do you feel you have yet to achieve as a business?

We aim to be in the top 10 furniture companies present in the G20 countries and to manufacture in three continents.

Typically, how many projects do you have on the go at one time?

In a typical year, we deliver two or three mega projects of circa $5 million and 20 mid-size projects.

When it comes to clients, what has changed over the past five years?

We have been delivering to more multinational corporations in the past five years. As we are in the process of a rapid global expansion, our client portfolio keeps growing every year. We have three showrooms in the USA (New York, Chicago, Dallas), one in London and one in Düsseldorf. Additionally, we have sales points in France, Austria, Spain, Holland, Poland, Singapore, Hong Kong, Australia, China, Russia, Colombia, Egypt, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Jordan, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Cyprus.

Which designers or design periods do you mentally refer to the most?

I am still very inspired by the Bauhaus era, especially in terms of the fruitful dialogue between art, music, architecture, theatre, performance arts, graphic design, industrial design etc…a true revival of Gesamtkunstwerk, which is mostly associated with Wagner, but actually has earlier roots as well.