The handsome uncle of the post-60s generation, who is obsessed with second-hand furniture, used Nordic design to play with a valuation of 300 million for the second time

Text/Bai Smith Jun (WeChat public account: Wu Xiaobo channel)

Before meeting Dean Bo Xi, Bai Smith Jun knew him as the founder, chairman and architect of UDG Lianchuang International Design Group, which has 14 branches across the country.

And this interview, the identity of President Bo Xi

He is an entrepreneur, a furniture designer, a Nordic furniture collector, and a “new craftsman”.

My first meeting with President Bo Xi was at Scream Design’s Shanghai headquarters office, which, unlike common offices, gave the first impression not of business, but of being as comfortable as a family living room.

The comfortable feeling is due to the dozen second-hand chairs that are placed everywhere.

Different in appearance, but complementing each other.

“These are chairs from Nordic masters and are in my collection.” Dean Bo Xi said.

“Then why are there so many Nordic-style chairs, but I feel like classical Chinese style in them?”

For a while, Bai Shijun did not hold back the doubt in his heart.

Obsession with Nordic style

President Bo Xi first paid attention to Northern Europe in 2000.

“The partner went to Finland and brought back a chair.” Dean Bo Xi recalled, “That chair is actually like the horn chair that everyone often sees in coffee shops, it is very comfortable to sit on, and if no one says it, no one will generally know that it is Nordic style.” ”

At just the first glance, Dean Bo Xi became fascinated by these chairs and began a decade-long collection.

“The Nordic climate is cold, people spend a lot of time at home, they have high requirements for indoor appliances, and the natural climate makes their furniture style unique, focusing on the comfort of use, which is the core of Nordic design.”

In addition to collecting, Dean Bo Xi began to try to introduce Nordic design to China.

Ningbo New District Library, Wuxi Eco-City, Wuxi Grand Theatre, all of which have the figure of the famous architectural design firm imported by President Bo Xi from Northern Europe.

After more and more cooperation, Dean Bo Xi found a very interesting thing.

“Chinese and Nordic furniture actually have a deep root. Danish designer Hans Wagner designed hundreds of chairs in his lifetime, the most famous one being the ‘Chinese Chair’ designed in 1943, inspired by the Chinese Ming Dynasty chair. It was then that Chinese furniture was first transmitted to the world by Nordic designers. ”

In short, the Chinese Ming Dynasty chair style is simple, paying attention to the sense of etiquette, but not enough attention to comfort, while the basis of Nordic chair design is comfort. But their aesthetic pursuit of simple shapes and the use of natural materials is the same.

With this understanding, this post-60s architectural god after 20 years of entrepreneurial success,

With courage that is not inferior to any young entrepreneur, he started a second venture in a completely new field.

“People’s liking for this direct, non-decorative, comfortable design is unconscious. If this inner need is met with Chinese design, it will be a very meaningful thing. ”

From architect to designer

In 2015, Dean Bo Xi founded the Nordic original home collection brand “Scream Design”, officially entering the Internet home brand industry.

The change of identity was both easy and difficult for Dean Bo Xi.

“As an architect, I receive a general education, which is broader than that of ordinary designers, has more complex skills, often emphasizes the sense of space, and is good at the shape of architecture.” Furniture designers pay attention to the emotional part of the design and pay attention to the characteristics of materials. Dean Bo Xi said, “So,

I want to use the architect’s perspective and technique to make the furniture design more architectural, so that the furniture design has a flowing musical meaning, which is unforgettable. ”

As a result, there is a five-finger sofa, a horn chair, and a flowing kung fu tea set.

“For example, the five-finger sofa, which has six modules in collaboration with Finnish designers, is a systematic design that can be put together. The shape of the five fingers is inspired by Nordic plants, or you can imagine a brightly colored musical keyboard that will catch the eye at once. ”

After several drafts, the design drawings were completed after repeated polishing,

The supply chain problem was caught off guard.

“Originally, the product was planned to come out in 2-3 months, but during mass production, we realized that a chair is different when it is sold in the face of B-side and C-side customers.

The B-side is used frequently, so it is easy to lose, and it is not easy to be damaged in home use, which is like a home treadmill that cannot face the requirements of high-frequency uninterrupted use in the gym.

In the B-side or C-end market, different material properties and maintenance costs are different in process flow and practice, and the production cycle will be different. ”

“So if you want to be a C-end market, in fact, the durability requirements of the product are not so high, why is the production cycle extended?” Bai Shijun was a little puzzled.

“Because in the end, we decided to produce the product with the requirements of the B side, which increased costs, longer testing times, and higher requirements for suppliers.”

Dean Bo Xi said.

More than personal transformation

In August 2016, Scream Design announced that it had obtained a pre-A round of financing of 40 million yuan, led by Shenzhen Fukun Venture Capital and co-invested by Shanghai Daojie Capital.

Now, Scream Design has more than 100 global original design brands, which can connect users with hundreds of excellent original designers and present thousands of global excellent original design works.

Embarrassingly, the number of local designers is in the single digits.

“The level of furniture design in China in the Ming Dynasty reached its peak, and in modern times, design education was interrupted, and it was eating traditional old books.

Design education is also difficult to say system, innovation is rare, the so-called industry brands are still in the imitation stage.

At foreign exhibitions, Chinese professionals take pictures and then draw scoops based on gourds, which abound. ”

Speaking of this, Dean Bo Xi is a little excited, and cultivating good local designers is destined to be a long-term process, what he can do now is to let local designers grow in the process of communicating and practicing with global peers.

“In addition to relying on the personal understanding and ability of designers, design management is very important to make the industry develop greater.

In order to meet the needs of users, it is necessary to integrate global design resources and make a product and a brand to manage.

Establishing China’s own international design brand is also the work to be done by China’s big brand design management in the future. ”

“You see, this is made by Zhang Lei, a designer in Hangzhou, using traditional bamboo weaving techniques, and the outside is pasted with layers of rice paper.” Pointing to a paper chair in the office area, Dean Bo Xi said, “His work once won the only award in Milan Design Week.

This will be the starting point for more and more Chinese designers. ”

For Scream Design, Dean Bo Xi said that the company will grow together with the Chinese design profession, the furniture industry and the new generation of Chinese designers. Scream Design will connect the natural, simple, organic and humanistic design philosophy of Nordic culture with the symbiotic style of man and nature in Chinese design, so as to make its own style.

Such a future, sooner or later, will come.

Interview notes

During the interview, Dean Bo Xi asked a question, and Bai Shijun was impressed.

“When you were a child, did you have a drawer of smiles in your house full of tools such as hammers and wrenches, and now, do you put them in your home?”

Asked here, Bai Jijun was a little speechless.

People born in the 60s and 70s seem to be easy to develop an interest, and then make something for the sake of interest, and their enlightenment may be the cabinet where hammers were specially placed at home when they were children.

Nowadays, few people are willing to practice their interests.

Thankfully, there are always people walking on this road with few people.

Just like Dean Bo Xi, he turned his hobby into a collection, turned collecting into courage, and used courage in his second entrepreneurship.

And re-walking the road of entrepreneurship, he has no slack, still has the persistence and courage of his youth.

They are the “new craftsmen” in the era of marketization, they want to make more than just a good product, they want to bring change to the entire industry.

If you want to meet more new artisans or become one of them, join us.

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