Hello Folks! As mentioned on our last blog’s post our month of frantic traveling all around Asia in pursuit of the latest insights on the furniture industry has started and today we broadcast live after having attended the Malaysian International Furniture Fair 2018 – MIFF – in Kuala Lumpur.
MIFF claims to be the largest furniture fair in Southeast Asia and consistently ranked amongst the top 10 worldwide fairs. Every March, quality exhibitors (more than 500 this year) and buyers (more than 6,000 registered international buyers in 2017) from all over the world converge on this global stage. Since its inception in 1995, MIFF has created fantastic business and networking opportunities for hundreds of thousands of participants.
MIFF is going to be 25% bigger in 2018, expanding to 100,000 square meters spanning two venues – Malaysia International Trade and Exhibition Centre (MITEC), the newest ultra-modern venue that is purpose-built for commercial events and Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC), international trade fair location that has hosted MIFF since its inception in 1995. The 2 venues are connected by a very well organized shuttle bus.
For anyone interested in visiting MIFF you may consider that one full day of hard work is more than enough to browse both the 2 venues.
We saw quite a lot of office and bedroom furniture at PWTC while at MITEC we saw more design inspired sizable brands, most of which from Malaysia and Indonesia: a lot of nice solid wood then! And this is absolutely in line with the annual growth target of 6.5% set by the local Government for wood-based furniture, estimated to reach up to RM53 billion by the year 2020.
What captured our attention today at MIFF:
- With our platform so focused on design, we are always extremely happy to check and meet in person how the local communities of young designers are growing. Here at MITEC we spent, therefore, some time checking out the awesome products presented by many local talented designers during the “Furniture Design Competition 2018 – Millennial@Design” ;
- we started what we wish will be a good and solid cooperation with “Tanggam – Design for All”. Tanggam is the leading Malaysian Online Architectural Students Community. Formerly exclusive to students of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Tanggam now consists of not only the current architectural students in Malaysia but also alumni, academicians and practicing architects;
- we met with Vivian Lim and Wei Mee of Work Studio System (M) Sdn Bhd: Vivian e Wei showed us an awesome, and very cleverly built, office solution in Laminate Veneer Lumber. Among all the “flat and boring” office furniture we saw today, the quality and design of Workstudio’s products were definitely a refreshing and forward thinking discovery. Thanks to Vivian and Wei for sharing your enthusiasm with us!;
- we finally spent some time chatting about where the Malaysian design is going with Farah Azizan and Adela Askandar, founders of Kedai Bikin, a Malaysian brand offering a curated range of home and living products. We were literally flabbergasted by what these two creative designers are doing, with a clear Asian twist, some techniques, lines, and materials that made the furniture design popular and accessible in the 70s and 80s. Well done Farah and Adela, we wish to see soon more and more quality design like yours in the western shops!
After our attendance at the MIFF fair, we learned that Work Studio has won 1st prize in MIFF Competition for Office Furniture Category. Big congratulations to Vivian and Wei Mee for your prize, we hope you will win many more prizes this year!