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Ikea’s Ex-Design Chief Says Design Will Kill Marketing,

At Ikea’s helm of design is Marcus Engman, the genius behind the past six years of boundary-pushing design collaborations.

 

 

Engman made Ikea venture outside of its minimalist Swedish roots, with much critical acclaim. Some of his most notable limited edition collaborations featured work from design stars like Virgil AblohBea Åkerlund, and Chris Stamp. Some of the results were wild. MaximalismSkateboardsIkea receipt rugs.

 

 

Now, the design visionary has announced his departure from Ikea to start a company of his own called Skewed Productions, as a partner of the design firm Doberman.

 

The company is a multi-hyphenate venture; it’s a part design studio, part design agency with an aim to utilize product design to act as the medium for the marketing itself.

 

Even though the company is only a couple months its existence, they’ve already secured collaborations with Adidas, Little Sun, Saint Heron, Design Indaba and are exploring possible future external collaborations for IKEA.

 

This is a departure from the traditional model of advertising, but instead of spending on ad buys, Engman’s goal is to provide guidance for companies to market themselves through design.

 

“I want to show there’s an alternative to marketing, which is actually design,” says Engman. “And if you work with design and communications in the right way, that would be the best kind of marketing, without buying media.”

 

 

Skewed Productions will technically be a one-man operation, as Engman plans to hire out collaborators from his network on a per-project basis. He plans to share his profits with the time, making this new model more equitable for all the different players involved.

 

Even though the company is only a couple months its existence, they’ve already secured collaborations with Adidas, Little Sun, Saint Heron, Design Indaba and are exploring possible future external collaborations for IKEA.

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“More and more people are interested in how things are made,” says Engman. “I believe in transparency–being more transparent in design you do–that attracts interest and over time it builds interest in the project.”

 

 

This is a departure from the traditional model of advertising, but instead of spending on ad buys, Engman’s goal is to provide guidance for companies to market themselves through design.

 

“I want to show there’s an alternative to marketing, which is actually design,” says Engman. “And if you work with design and communications in the right way, that would be the best kind of marketing, without buying media.”

 

 

Skewed Productions will technically be a one-man operation, as Engman plans to hire out collaborators from his network on a per-project basis. He plans to share his profits with the time, making this new model more equitable for all the different players involved.

 

Even though the company is only a couple months its existence, they’ve already secured collaborations with Adidas, Little Sun, Saint Heron, Design Indaba and are exploring possible future external collaborations for IKEA.

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