Steelcase enters marketing deal with Blu Dot furniture
Blu Dot

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – Office furniture manufacturer Steelcase entered a distribution relationship with Blu Dot, a Minneapolis designer and maker of modern home furnishings, lighting and accessories. The move reflects a blurring of the line between home and work space.

“We see an interesting cultural movement, as organizations want to create inspiring places unique to their culture and brand,” said Allan Smith, vice president, global marketing at Steelcase. “We want to make that easier for them, and providing Blu Dot products through our distribution network immediately gives our customers access to a broad range of modern lounge, table, lighting and accessory offerings complementary to our own products.”


Blu Dot walnut veneer buttercup chair heads into brick and mortar stores

To establish its brand with consumers, Blu Dot Design & Manufacturing, Inc., has opened retail stores around the globe - but just seven: Sydney, Mexico City, Monterrey, Austin, Chicago, Minneapolis, and New York.

The Steelcase move follows Herman Miller's recent venture into retail sales of its office furnitures to consumers, through Design Within Reach, and by opening its first Herman Miller branded retail store.

Steelcase will sell Blu Dot furniture through its distribution network. The core of Steelcase business is to help organizations create great work experiences through understanding worker behavior and creating places to help people think better, feel better and be healthier. Working with Blu Dot expands the company’s breadth in an important and growing category, adding another layer to its ability to service customer needs.

Founded in 1997, Blu Dot offers a wide array of modern home furnishings including accessories like rugs and lighting.
“In the past few years, we have experienced enormous growth in the office segment as companies use our wide collection to personalize their spaces," said John Christakos, Blu Dot CEO. "With Steelcase, we’re able to reach their entire dealer network with convenient tools, ordering platforms and logistics that will make specifying Blu Dot even easier. We couldn’t be more excited about this new relationship,”

Steelcase will make the full Blu Dot product line available through the Steelcase Dealer Network. Dealers will order from Blu Dot and products will ship with Steelcase orders. The process will be managed through the Steelcase order entry and transportation network. Steelcase dealers can begin to order Blu Dot products immediately.

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Bill Esler | ConfSenior Editor

Bill wrote for, FDMC and Closets & Organized Storage magazines. 

Bill's background includes more than 10 years in print manufacturing management, followed by more than 30 years in business reporting on industrial manufacturing in the forest products industries, including printing and packaging at American Printer (Features Editor) and Graphic Arts Monthly (Editor in Chief) magazines; and in secondary wood manufacturing for

Bill was deeply involved with the launches of the Woodworking Network Leadership Forum, and the 40 Under 40 Awards programs. He currently reports on technology and business trends and develops conference programs.

In addition to his work as a journalist, Bill supports efforts to expand and improve educational opportunities in the manufacturing sectors, including 10 years on the Print & Graphics Scholarship Foundation; six years with the U.S. WoodLinks; and currently on the Woodwork Career Alliance Education Committee. He is also supports the Greater West Town Training Partnership Woodworking Program, which has trained more than 950 adults for industrial wood manufacturing careers. 

Bill volunteers for Foinse Research Station, a biological field station staddling the border of Ireland and Northern Ireland, one of more than 200 members of the Organization of Biological Field Stations.