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Power Talk Friday: The Company Store: Quality, Sustainability, and Innovation

Episode 773 of A Well-Designed Business®

Today with Corinne Bentzen and Melanie Kaplan:

Welcome to a Well-Designed Business. On today’s sponsored show, I’m sitting down with Corinne Bentzen and Melanie Kaplan from The Company Store. We’re talking about the importance of staying on color trends, seasonal rotations of products, how the brand stays dedicated to premium quality, and their commitment to sustainability.

Pick it apart:

[18:34] Melanie shares her background in design and textiles, including experience in cotton mills that laid the foundation of her expertise.

[23:27] Melanie discusses how her team plays into the success of the brand.

[26:30] Melanie talks about the company’s design process and valuable partnerships.

[31:30] Corinne and Melanie share how seasonal rotation and constant innovation keep the brand’s designs fresh and relevant.

[44:23] Corinne and Melanie talk about how they maintain their commitment to artisanal quality.

Ah-Ha Moments:

“We have global design partners all over the world. It’s been my experience that partnership is so much a part of the success of the brand. We have great suppliers that understand our mission. We have design people that are so talented and understand the direction and vision of The Company Store. It’s an ongoing process. We think about the lifestyle, we think about the quality it needs to represent. We never shortcut anything in this brand.” -Melanie Kaplan

“We are the color authority. We have never, ever been afraid of color. In fact, we love it, and that’s a distinction of The Company Store.” -Melanie Kaplan

“That is the type of support that an interior designer needs, when you’re going to recommend bedding—people are going to sleep on this. Comfort is key and critical, and it can be judged way more harshly than walking on an area rug, for example. When I think about everything that goes into your products, I know I would not want to learn all of the things, so it’s nice that designers can just go to the website and order swatches.” -LuAnn Nigara

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More About Corinne Bentzen:

Born in Geneva, Switzerland, Corinne Bentzen began her career at Procter & Gamble, where she built brand identity for premium brands before taking the leap across the pond to join Tiffany & Co. in New York. There she put her strategic thinking, strong decision making, and leadership skills to work, ultimately leading her to The Company Store where she breathed new life into the 110-year-old home goods retailer acquired by The Home Depot in 2018. Not one to shy from a challenge, Corinne most recently took over the leadership of Home Depot’s HD Home, in addition to her leadership role at The Company Store. An avid skier and cyclist, Corinne lives in Connecticut where she enjoys an active family life with her husband, two children, and their rescue dog Rosie.

More about Melanie Kaplan:

Following a graduate program in Textile Design and Science at Fashion Institute of Technology, Melanie  Kaplan launched a career in design and development of home furnishings products that spans a range  from decorative fabrics to finished consumer products, from bed ensembles to lifestyle furniture, from  children’s garments to kitchen textiles.

From Design Director for a decorative fabrics company, Melanie transitioned to Vice President of Product Design and Development at a bedding producer, where she first worked directly with major  retailers to develop their programs.

As Senior VP of Design for home furnishings at Dan River, a storied American textile company, Melanie’s  ability to translate art and concept to commercially successful design led Dan River to a spot as an  innovative leading supplier to the retail home furnishings market.

In 2007, Melanie moved to the retail world as the Chief Creative Officer for Hanover Direct Inc., where  she headed all design, product development, sourcing and image development for the company’s key  brands, including The Company Store.

Since The Home Depot’s acquisition of The Company Store in 2017, Melanie continues in a leadership  role. As Product Development Senior Merchant, her energy, expertise and leadership continue to inspire  colleagues on all sides of the global supply chain to the American home furnishings consumer.

A native New Yorker, Melanie commits free time and resources to organizations committed to  improving the lives of individuals, children and families affected by various hardships.

What’s new with LuAnn Nigara

luannuniversity.com

http://www.luannnigara.com/cob

insidevoiceoutsidevoice.com

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Book 1: The Making of A Well – Designed Business: Turn Inspiration into Action

Book 2: A Well-Designed Business – The Power Talk Friday Experts

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A Big THANK YOU to Today’s Podcast Sponsor:

Thank you to The Company Store for sponsoring this show!

What Level is Your Design Business?