Juventa: "Design is my lifetime experience"
Luc Vannevel,Juventa, Belgium
Roel Vandebeek, Beekdesign, Belgium
Peter Van Riet, Product Projects, Belgium
Furniture company Juventa implements design into the different
areas it covers with its products. Juventa operates both in the sector of low
end design furniture with take-away objects as well as in the market's top segment
with highly designed furniture. Therefore the company introduces itself in this
case study with two designers as a livid testimony of good experiences in both
For Juventa design is no crisis management. The company does not call on design
to solve problems. Juventa simply wants to become market leader in a particular
sector with a well-planned design policy. Design is an important foundation
for any company and an essential part of its corporate policy.
Juventa is a furniture company founded in 1985. At that time it's active in
the sector of low-priced modern furniture, mainly producing lacquered bedrooms.
In 1992 the company chooses for an important strategy: it decides to direct
its products at the higher design market and takes on design as a major factor
in the company. With this, Juventa places itself in the market's middle segment,
developing well-designed quality products for modular interiors. They decide
for specific design lines applying to all functions within home interiors. In
1996 Juventa first appears at Interieur, a reputed biennial international design
fair. By 1999 Juventa decides to profile itself in the high design sector too.
Thus Juventa evolves into a company with an explicit design program.
First case study: BEEK Design
Roel Vandebeek graduates as an industrial designer in 1994. The `Stoelenkast'
(The Chairs' Cupboard) was designed in the same year and illustrates right away
that to Vandebeek design is more than a beautiful shape. Every new product should
be based on a devised concept. In 1996 Roel Vandebeek founds his own Industrial
Design Bureau: BEEK Design. His first project is the `Occhio' chair (occhio
being the Italian for eye) for Drisag Office Furniture. The round notches in
the back (`the eyes') are repeated as armrests. To Roel Vandebeek design can
move into all kinds of areas: he is also active in the fields of architecture
and art. At the same time, he is a visiting lecturer at two academies in Belgian.
He needs a spacious context for his creative efforts.