Cascade of Prizes For Zone Denmark
The Danish design brand Zone Denmark has won 11 international design awards so far in 2020. A result that the Zone team itself attributes to a daring attitude, stubborn optimism and a close collaboration with hand-picked, skilled people – and which creates hope and motivation in a challenging time.
Zone Denmark was a slightly outmoded interior brand when a new team took over five years ago. The brand began an ambitious transformation to lift it into a new design-driven era, and the process took off in earnest when Zone Denmark was acquired in 2018 by Scandinavia’s leading brand house, F&H in Viborg, Denmark.
At F&H, Zone Denmark has been given the framework and the power to realise initiatives that have increased exports, fostered new sub-brands and cemented its position as an innovative design brand that challenges the more established players. And it has paid off. Zone Denmark has experienced explosive organic growth and sales that have increased significantly every year.
Awards consolidate design profile
The team’s efforts began to pay off in 2016, when the Peili bowl series won a Red Dot Award. Since then, Zone has been awarded 27 additional prizes, including several German Design Awards and German Brand Awards as well as multiple IF Design Awards. Most recently, the brand added its fourth and fifth Red Dot Award to that collection, received for a side table in the INU spa series, designed by Tilde Nygaard from Neu Studio, and a glass series in the ROCKS cocktail concept, designed by the duo Mavro//Lefevre, respectively.
“We’re just so happy, proud and overwhelmed,” says Design & Brand Manager Michael Bruun. “We’ve very consciously aimed to refine our profile as a design brand, and the many awards show us that we’re close to that goal. But we are still hungry and motivated to continue at the same pace and with the same nerve. Our results confirm that good design at affordable prices has its merits – even when changes are happening around the world that are beyond our control.”
A deliberate strategy
Zone’s strategy is based on an in-depth knowledge of the retail sector and a very close collaboration with a handful of Danish designers who combine commercial understanding with a talent for simple and functional design. The team of partners is hand-picked, and the dialogue is intimate and open. And that’s no coincidence, either.
The combination of a small but dedicated team based at the head office and a strong external network creates a dynamic work process and ensures that Zone is continuously supplied with new ideas and initiatives. The partners are considered an integral part of Zone Denmark, and both challenges and successes are continuously communicated. This ensures a shared set of values and a strong and consistent profile, enabling both internal and external members of the team to assess which ideas hit (or miss) the mark.
Strong brand management
The cascade of prizes received by Zone Denmark not only cover the brand’s products. In 2019, the German Design Council awarded Zone Denmark two prizes for excellent brand management in the following categories: Kitchen and Household Appliances and the prestigious special prize ‘Brand Innovation of the Year’.
In March this year, the brand’s new spa and wellness concept INU received a German Brand Award Gold in the category Excellent Brands – Interior & Living, and the concept also won the ‘Newcomer Brand of the Year’ award in the same category.
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