Zuo Modern, a fashion-forward provider of upholstery, accent tables, chairs, lighting and home decor for the commercial, residential and commercial indoor and outdoor markets, was founded in 2005 by entrepreneurs Luis Ruesga, CEO, and Steve Poon, COO.
With a focus on contemporary design, the company has grown and continues to expand its sales channels and offerings. Currently, the company serves the residential, hotel and restaurant markets.
Ruesga, who holds an MBA from the University of California, Berkeley, started out at an office supply company where he began to see his future in the furniture industry with office chairs. Ruesga was won over and after working there for a few years, he started Zuo Modern selling office chairs, which is still the company’s second category, according to Ruesga.
Zuo has warehouses in Union City, California, Miami and Montreal, and employs approximately 180 people. The company has showrooms in Atlanta, Las Vegas, High Point and Miami.
Ruesga has opened a 60,000 square foot production facility in Mexico and sources upholstery fabrics from Mexico and the Dominican Republic. By partnering with the largest mattress manufacturer in the Dominican Republic with its own foam factory, Zuo is able to “source foam and fabric, legs, etc., from them and ship them directly to from an American wholesaler,” according to Ruesga.
Under Ruesga’s leadership, Zuo was an early adopter of the technology. The company launched an improved website in 2021 that provided search and inventory browsing tools. Features include real-time inventory status that shows which products are in stock, in production, or in transit. Additionally, the mobile-friendly site features a shopping cart where users can save products for future orders and get quotes for FedEx small package shipments for a variety of ground, overnight and two-way delivery options. days.
At the time, Ruesga said: “Our resellers and designers can now see the real-time status of every order and have access to their complete order history, including those placed by phone, email or during of a trade fair.”
Ruesga is driven by the intersection of fashion and furniture, saying “we like to think of ourselves more as a fashion company than a furniture company”.
This year, Zuo formed his first exclusive collaboration with renowned glass and tile artist, Allison Eden Studios, who specialize in technicolor kaleidoscope glass mosaics. This is the first licensed collection for Zuo. Each design offers vibrant colors with a mid-century modern twist and is paired with Zuo’s hotel-grade faux leather and velvet fabrics.
According to Ruesga, all the products presented in the High Point or Las Vegas markets are available. The company is constantly creating new looks and does not use marketplaces as a way to “test” prototypes. “We don’t have space problems; we have new releases for Vegas and a new batch for October, and these new styles can’t wait,” he said.
With over 100 listings in each market, what’s on the horizon for Zuo?
“For the coming year, we expect our industry to return to pre-pandemic levels and adapt to the challenges we have faced with supply chain issues due to product resource delays.” , Ruesga said. “As a brand, Zuo will continue to set trends by designing innovative products that bring vibrant pops of color that deliver positivity to our retail, designer and hospitality customers.”