Tag Archives: Maury Riad

Fuigo Launches Market, a First-of-Its-Kind Interior Design Marketplace

PR Newswire

Top Brands Join Platform That Dramatically Simplifies Trade Sourcing

NEW YORK, May 29, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — Fuigo, the award-winning co-working studio and developer of a market-leading enterprise project management software for interior designers, announces the launch of Market, a groundbreaking marketplace that reimagines and streamlines sourcing, purchasing and tracking for trade orders from the world’s finest luxury brands.

The new software serves the $78 billion dollar interior design industry by expediting the interior design purchase process up to 75%, allowing designers to devote more time to the art of their craft and business development. Working in tandem with the Fuigo project management platform, all purchasing is automatically included into the reporting and analytics of the tool, saving designers considerable time and effort and making it seamless to prepare proposals and invoicing for clients projects.

“Market streamlines sourcing and creates more time for creative ideation,” says Maury Riad, co-founder of Fuigo. It’s easy to use; designers can add Market purchases directly into their projects, create tear sheets, request samples, or message vendors with a single click. “It’s not about helping designers a little,” adds Riad, “it’s about completely transforming the arduous task of purchasing, allowing it to become a part of the artistic process.”

This is the first platform of its kind, custom-built for professional designers to discover, source and purchase from the world’s finest luxury trade brands. Whether a designer knows what they’re looking for or simply seeking inspiration, Market will get them there faster. Designers can search by category, product and price, making discovery painless and easy. All Market products are offered at trade pricing exclusively for design professionals. What’s more, by aggregating the purchasing power of designers, Market offers even deeper discounts at a group rate, increasing the bottom line of design firms by up to 30%.

“Market showcases over 200 of the best artisans and makers working today,” says Riad. “Not only are we hoping to improve designers’ workflow, but we’re also aiming to give these brands a wider platform for discovery.”

Featuring some of the top names in the trade, like Fortuny, Holland & Sherry, Kravet, Brunschwig, Lee Jofa, Pierre Frey, Nobilis, and Saint-Louis, there’s plenty of quality design to be found on Market, right where designers need it most.

Fuigo Market features include:

Trade Vendors

  • 200 top trade brands, projected to grow to 500+ vendors and 200,000+ SKUs by the end of 2019.

Access to Immediate Trade Pricing

  • Market purchasing saves time and money. With one resale certificate once, designers access trade pricing on all Market brands.
  • All Market products are offered at price parity, ensuring you secure the lowest possible price for every item.

Real-Time Vendor Communication 

  • Market eliminates resource intensive offline vendor communications.
  • Intuitive in-platform vendor chat streamlines and simplifies product specification management.

Easy-to-Use Discovery Tools

  • Searching by category, product and price makes discovery painless and easy.
  • Intelligent search and powerful filters curate an unmatched repository of the trade brands interior designers prefer.

Powerful Quoting and Proposal Tools

  • Simple quoting and proposal tools unlock more time for creative ideation.
  • Quickly create tear sheets, request samples or message vendors with a single click.

“Letting designers do what they do best is really what turned me on about Fuigo. Imagine if Picasso had to spend three-quarters of his time managing his business. Fuigo is doing more than giving people more to buy or a place to go—it facilitates their business, which is a very different model.”

                                    –John Edelman, Stakeholder

About the CEO:

For over 25 years, Maury Riad has worked in the world of interior design. Stewards of the Fortuny legacy, he and his brother, Mickey, took over operations of the Venetian textile company from their father in the early 1990s. Together, they brought the 100-year-old firm online and into modernity, with Maury overseeing the business and its operations. Along with Mickey, Maury is Co-Founder of Fuigo. As CEO, Maury brings his passion and respect for the arts to Fuigo, where he wants independent interior designers to have the opportunity to thrive in an increasingly corporate world.

About Fuigo:

Fuigo was founded in 2015 by Maury and Mickey Riad, owners of the heritage textile company Fortuny. Fuigo’s mission is to build real and virtual platforms that promote and future-proof exceptional interior design. Fuigo’s award-winning 18,000 square-foot Park Avenue studio includes beautiful workspaces and New York’s largest material lending library with samples from over 1,000 of the top A&D vendors. Fuigo is a leading technology company providing end-to-end business software that allows interior designers to achieve both creative and business excellence.

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Why are designers leaving money on the table?

This is the first in a series of columns from Maury Riad, the founder and CEO of Fuigo.

Designers are undoubtedly the stars of the interior design industry. There’s a reason manufacturers lavish so many fancy dinners and free trips on them: These brands understand the power designers wield over their clients’ purchases. But after two decades in the industry, I have seen how common it is for designers to get squeezed out of their fair margins. They deserve more—and there are simple methods that have been successfully used by other industries for decades that can increase a designer’s bottom line.
Three years ago, I co-founded Fuigo, a project management platform and interior design co-working space in New York, in order to help designers gain access to the tools they need to be successful. I knew plenty of interior designers who ran thriving practices, but felt that they were being severely shortchanged—especially considering the pivotal role they play as industry tastemakers and gatekeepers for the entire buying channel to suppliers.

Other industries—from medicine to construction—have already caught on to this power dynamic, creating group purchasing organizations to leverage their collective buying power. When group purchasing happens in these other lines of business, buyers from different organizations team up to negotiate better terms. If you are a hospital looking for gauze, you find a couple of other hospitals that also want to purchase gauze, then approach the medical supplier as a group to strike a deal. From a simple supply-and-demand perspective, this type of aggregated purchasing power makes perfect sense. But in the interior design industry, this concept hasn’t yet become the norm.

Designers typically make purchases either directly from the manufacturer for a trade discount, or through a retailer’s trade services program (which is really brands leveraging their larger wholesale discount and passing a few percentage points of their profit to their designer customers). In both cases, purchasing involves establishing a one-on-one relationship, making a custom order, and executing significant follow-up with a third-party retailer for what are often bespoke pieces that are hard to keep track of—in short, a huge logistical effort for most design firms. By relying mostly on complex systems of purchasing, designers get squeezed out of potential earnings. The interior designer’s margins can also be jeopardized when a client’s choices and selections max out their budget—the designer’s margin is often the first to be sacrificed to keep clients happy and save a project.

Ultimately, neither purchasing methodology truly leverages the buying power of designers en masse. What has been missing in our industry is the infrastructure to make this possible. But from a brand’s perspective, it’d be a welcome change. Take Fortuny, the company my family has been running for 25 years. As a globally recognized textile house, we know how group discounting can take our product accessibility to the next level, not only driving greater sales but also empowering more talented designers to use our materials.

Group purchasing is not completely new to the industry—companies like Design Trade Service offer access to trade brands with better discounts and logistics management, and designers have long formed their own ad hoc groups to take advantage of better pricing—but have never become mainstream. In my work with Fuigo, I have seen exactly what creating this kind of support can do for an interior designer, from the ease and resourcefulness of group workspaces to the increased accessibility of a shared sourcing library, and I believe that group purchasing should be next. With the recent launch of Market, an online marketplace of to-the-trade vendors, our project management system now does all the legwork of group buying by simply introducing a commercial infrastructure. It’s a highway speedily connecting buyers and suppliers, where demand is already aggregated and the “group rate” is always in effect.

I believe the deeper discount designers will receive from group purchasing could as much as double their gross margins, on top of trade discounts, which would elevate the designer’s profit margin on client projects. No matter how designers access that group discount, the benefits of group purchasing are within close reach of the interior design industry, and it’s a missed opportunity for designers who aren’t taking advantage of that power. Technology will bring our industry to the next level, and utilizing the tools to get there will keep design moving forward.

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Why are designers leaving money on the table?Maury Riad is the founder and CEO of Fuigo, a co-working space for designers in New York and project management software. He is also the co-owner of renowned international textiles brand Fortuny, which his family has owned for nearly three decades. In his column for BOH, Riad shares his deep insight into the business of design and how designers work today to weigh in on how, with small changes to their business model, design professionals can revolutionize the industry.

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