Rufai emerges winner of IO Furniture Innovation award

Rufai emerges winner of IO Furniture Innovation award

CEO, IO Furniture, Mrs. Muni Shonibare (left) presenting the award plaque and dummy cheque to winner of the IO Innovation Award 2015, Damola Rufai, while other finalists look on.
CEO, IO Furniture, Mrs. Muni Shonibare (left) presenting the award plaque and dummy cheque to winner of the IO Innovation Award 2015, Damola Rufai, while other finalists look on.
A 28-year-old designer, Damola Rufai, has emerged winner of the IO Furniture Innovation Award held last week at the IO Furniture showroom in Ilupeju. He emerged winner of the competition, claiming the cash prize of N1 million ahead of the other three finalists – Yinka Dayo-Adepoju, Nafisat Dada and Babalola Ishmael.

The four finalists displayed and delivered stellar pitches about their designs to the panellists, which included President of the Association of Consulting Architects Nigeria (ACAN), Arc. Tayo Babalakin; Chief Executive Officer of IO Furniture, Mrs Muni Shonibare; Head of Production at IO Furniture, Mr Stefano Moretti; and Chief Executive Officer of Ruff ‘n’ Tumble, Mrs Nike Ogunlesi.

Damola Rufai’s ‘Esho Table’ was chosen as the winning design, which will be produced and added to the IO Furniture product line. He will also receive royalties for his design for a period of one year.

The ‘Esho Table’ is a versatile design that can be used in both commercial and residential settings. Made of a glass top and welded steel rods, it was designed with low poly graphics in mind to conjure up images of a cut jewel. It was named after the Yoruba word for treasure or jewel.

According to Rufai, a product of King’s College, Lagos and Howard University, he was inspired to do something that would not require modern computerized design tools. “I wanted my design to be doable by somebody who didn’t own a computer, especially with materials that can be easily reusable,” he said.

Initiator of the project, Mrs. Muni Shonibare, said the award is to encourage young designers with the platform to showcase their talents.

“We set up this award to develop our own talents and expose the younger generation to the endless possibilities in the industry. The fashion, music and entertainment industry is thriving, that is the same success we want in the design and furniture sector.”

Source: Guardian

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