Can you tell us a little bit about your company?
Prostoria is an example of a company for building a successful business and the identity of a domestic company with superbly designed and manufactured furniture, which has gained confidence in the niche of design brands, the most demanding international market segment of furniture. Over the years, Prostoria has gradually built a positive image of Croatia as a country with a quality production culture. The room was founded and run by Tomislav Knezović, who has dedicated his professional life to the furniture industry for 27 years. This company invests in innovative projects, necessary technological plants and experts who surround it. The premise of this brand's success so far is its focus on uncompromising quality design, production and investment in employees who nurture equal values.
Thanks to the innovative design of its furniture collection, Prostoria has grown into an international premium brand that is respected by its fierce competition. Among them are legendary design brands from Scandinavia, Germany, Italy and France, active for 70 years, and some of them for 100 years. Many of them moved their production partially or completely to China and the countries of Eastern Europe 20 years ago, while Prostoria set it up in Hrvatsko Zagorje. Starting with the production of upholstered furniture, the first Revolve sofa became a kind of design icon, and was soon followed by the Polygon armchair, whose international popularity is constantly growing. Polygon is considered to be the example of furniture that every connoisseur of good design in the world wants to have in their home. In this way, the collaboration with the designers of the Room focused on the development of innovative pieces of furniture. And each new design required new technological solutions, and the Room gradually, over the first eight years, invested in all furniture production technologies to control its quality. Thus, from a manufactory, Prostoria has grown to a high level of industrial production of furniture made of wood, metal and upholstered furniture - which is a rarity in the world. And in the production process itself, top materials such as Slavonian oak, premium leather and fabrics are used. It is equally important that during its first eight years, Prostoria became an integral part of Croatian living culture, imprinting on it a characteristic note of modernity. At the international level, it has gradually built a positive image of Croatia as a country with a quality production culture.
In addition to many private interiors, the premises of PwC in Australia, one of the five globally leading business consulting companies, the offices of the pharmaceutical company JGL in Rijeka, the Radisson Blu Hotel in Helsinki, Starbucks in Milan, the luxury Warehouse Hotel in Singapore, the business lodge of Platov airport in Russia, the foyers of the Park Inn by Radisson hotel at Zurich airport, the One Suite hotel in Dubrovnik, the Navis and Bevanda hotels in Opatija, Google offices, Facebook and the like.
Currently, more and more people work from home, do you advocate this way of working?
For the past 20 years or so, offices have become more and more similar to hotel lounges or lobbies. Spaces are being created where employees will feel relaxed, where they will be able to rest, sit in a comfortable armchair while having phone conversations, hold a meeting at the bar table ... this crisis has only accelerated the process that was going in that direction anyway….
What do you think the office is?
The office concept refers to a work zone that is defined by specific work surfaces. These surfaces today can also be a dining table and chair, sofa or armchair. The space can be open or minimally enclosed, for example, by the body of the armchair. The perception of the "office" has shifted and the furniture, which until yesterday was considered residential, works equally well in business premises, which brings a more relaxed atmosphere of home, necessary for additional motivation of employees. However, above all, the furniture must be well designed and made of durable materials. We are talking about solid wood and fabrics of natural origin that build a better quality space for work and living.
On your website we see that you have received numerous awards for the design of your furniture. Can you tell us something about these awards?
These are the most established awards for good product design that are valued in the furniture industry and belong to the international design culture. They recognized the functionality of our design, but also the quality performance by the production.
There is a lot of talk at the moment about new ways of working. And the conversion of office space, more and more advocates for an informal way of working among employees, and the optimization of the office space itself. Do you think that optimizing office space can contribute to the development of a company?
He certainly can. A satisfied employee is efficient and creative in his work. The time when repression was thought to bring the best results is behind us. Erasing the boundary between office and home is erasing the boundary between business and private… lives are intertwined!
What do you think is the office of the future?
We believe that everything goes towards "more is less", but that "less" should be of exceptional quality and long-lasting. This tendency is innate to us, because that is exactly the premise of the design of our furniture from the very beginning.
In keeping with the above, the office must be a comfortable and friendly environment, in which employees feel similar to being in their own home. The comfort and functionality that the furniture provides is important.