MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. - Kitchen cabinet provider CliqStudios has announced plans to invest nearly $2 million in a new design studio in St. Louis County, Missouri. The Minnesota-based company, reportedly the largest U.S. online seller of semi-custom cabinets through its website CliqStudios.com, says the new location will help create 98 jobs.
This latest expansion will help the cabinetry firm accommodate its growing customer base, according to CliqStudios. The company announced in November it would invest $5.1 million to build a design studio in Indianapolis, Indiana.
“CliqStudios selected Indianapolis and St. Louis as the sites for our expanded design studios because of the excellent availability of outstanding design talent in each market,” said Joy Schmelzer, vice president of Customer Experience at CliqStudios.com. “We expect to create up to 200 jobs in both new design studios over the next five years.”
The Missouri Department of Economic Development has offered a strategic incentive package that the company can receive if it meets strict job creation criteria.
“This is great news for the St. Louis region and another concrete example of the economic progress we’re seeing all across our state,” said Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon. “I thank CliqStudios for investing and creating jobs in our state, and look forward to seeing them continue to grow and succeed here in the heartland.”
The St. Louis expansion brings to five the number of cabinet design studios CliqStudios has located throughout the Midwest, including its 1.8 million-square-foot factory in Connersville, Indiana, which opened in 2014. CliqStudios is a unit of Wayzata Home Products and said it projects its growth to continue throughout 2017 and beyond.
CliqStudios names Tiller new CEO
In related news, the CliqStudios Board of Directors has appointed Tom Tiller as CEO. The company, which made the announcement Jan. 5, said the appointment is effective immediately. Founder and former CEO Andy Juang will remain with the company as Chairman of the Board.
Tiller will be based at the company's new headquarter location in Bloomington, Minnesota. He has a BSME from MIT and a MBA from Harvard Business School. Prior to joining CliqStudios, Tiller worked at General Electric in GE Aerospace as a design engineer and progressed through a variety of management roles there. He also served in senior roles at GE Appliances and GE Silicones and was the CEO of Polaris Industries and later at Abound Solar. He has served on the advisory board of CliqStudios for the past three years.
“Since its founding in 2010, Andy and the entire Cliq team have come a very long way," Tiller said. "CliqStudios has quickly become the market leader for high quality, on-line kitchen cabinets."
"We look forward to growing the company and to continue to help customers remodel their kitchens in a fundamentally better way – easier, faster, and with better value than traditional options. I am very excited to be a part of this rapidly growing company.”
In addition to Tiller's hiring, Boston-based private equity firm Great Hill Partners recently made a strategic investment in the company. Related investments by Great Hill include e-commerce firms Wayfair and The Shade Store.
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