In this new episode of the Frezza Partner Insights we interviewed Bim Akin-Agunbiade, CEO of Desmo UK.
The company, whose name stands for DESign MOvement, is based in UK and Nigeria, and provides interior design, supply and fit-out solutions across Great Britain, West and Central Africa. Its aim has always been to create innovative and cutting edge solutions for clients, sourcing unique and long lasting products all across Europe.
We talked to Mr. Akin-Agunbiade about the difference between Europe and Nigeria, the partnership with Frezza and the possible future developments of the office world.
1. Desmo UK has a long successful story in Nigeria. What are the key factors to achieve outstanding results in such a demanding market?
Our story started in Nigeria since 2002, and I can say there are many key factors. First of all we understand the local dynamics and adapt to them, keeping up with ever changing environment and market place. Working with architects and clients who understand and buy into the need for world class process to achieve world class outcomes. It is also important to work with supportive suppliers with international experience, willing to learn and evolve with us in the market. Last but not the least, having a well trained, great and focused local team.
2. Is the Nigerian office space planning following the same directions as the UK one or are there any specific differences or local shades which need to be taken into consideration?
Office space planning is different from the UK direction. It is less regulated, and more privacy and security conscious. The open plan office arrangement is certainly similar to UK. The senior managers/CEO areas tend to want privacy so you find offices may have glass partitions with blinds or solid partitions with high acoustic requirement.
There is also a very high presence of television screens usually in the receptions areas, common areas and manager’s offices etc. Security is high priority.
In terms of furniture the focus is more on function and costs for the operative furniture, and opulence for the CEO level.
There is a heavier reliance on us as fit out contractors/suppliers to assist with space planning and partition layout/specification.
3. Can you make an example of the winning aspects in choosing Frezza as a partner for your projects?
Extra ordinary support and quick response to queries and problems on the few occasions they have occurred. Frezza is always innovative and evolving. Open to new ideas and welcome advise on how best to grow markets. But most of all, it has quality products.
4. Based on your experience, how do you imagine the office environment in ten years from now?
I think the office environment will become more tech based with more openness and visibility. Colourful offices will be the norm to encourage creativity and humanise the office as it becomes more and more tech dependent.
The effect of the pandemic will be here to stay. It will influence office population and design in the medium term. Flexible and adaptable offices will be the new norm.