In April 2001, David Trubridge boarded his flight at Rome airport with a great feeling of satisfaction. The Havelock North-based designer had spent the past week exhibiting his work in Northern Italy, at the Salone Internazionale del Mobile, the annual Milan Furniture Fair. It was the world’s largest annual furniture exhibition, with 170,000 annual visitors. Trubridge was in his first year of a three year commitment to displaying his work in the fair’s Salone Satellite, a section for up-and-coming designers. One of his pieces, the Body Raft 2000, had immediately created significant interest, and had been featured in several newspapers. During the course of the week, several manufacturers had also expressed an interest in licensing the design.
On the last morning of the show, a charismatic Italian man entered the Pacific Edge exhibit, the space Trubridge shared with two Australian designers. Within seconds of spotting the raft, he approached Trubridge with brief questions about his commercial intentions for the design. He then said his company would like to make it. As with other interested parties, Trubridge asked him to write his contact details in the exhibit’s visitor book. Trubridge was shocked to discover the man’s name was Giulio Cappelini , one of the world’s most respected furniture designers and manufacturers.
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|Business Case Study No||UA-2004-001|
|Number of Pages||10|
|Category||Decision point; Teaching case|
|Setting - Country||New Zealand|
|Source||Auckland, NZ. Publisher: University of Auckland Business Case Centre. Pages: 1 - 11|