Oi Furniture was founded in 2006 as the result of a brand driven product design initiative at Cocoon Branding. The result was a new brand of environmentally low-impact cellular furniture that captured international interest and attention when the first prototype was unveiled at New York's International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) .
Since that time, Oi has been featured by a number of websites and publications including Treehugger, Core77, NotCot, Design-Milk, Apartment Therapy, Elle Decor, and has made appearances on CityLine and CBC's Dragon's Den.
In addition to being recognized by TheDieline.com - the world's largest package design website - as one of the top 100 package designs in the world for 2010, Oi was also featured at the 2010 WIRED Store in New York.
Oi cells are currently manufactured and produced in Canada and have found homes in commercial and residential spaces in cities including New York, Miami, San Francisco, Vancouver, Toronto, Minneapolis, and Chicago.
Oi's founders include Jason Abbott, Kyle Romaniuk, Craig Alun Smith, and Blair Fox who will continue to strive to develop innovative and sustainable products that adapt to people's ever-changing lifestyles, and driven by our core values which include:
We originally set out to design a better way to imagine furniture, and one that was good to the earth.
All parts where possible are made from recycled and recyclable or reusable materials.
SHIPPING: Two typical seating cells ship in a 30" cube for a higher shipping efficiency. Our direct-to-customer model minimizes the number of times needed to ship, avoiding additional emissions, and at just 30" it can be shipped simply by UPS.
ALUMINUM: Our aluminum base is comprised of 12.5% post-consumer material and 35.9% pre-consumer material. All off-cuts are recycled, but the design results in minimal off-cuts.
FOAM: We use a bio-based qualux that contains soy polyol which leaves a smaller environmental footprint and soy is a renewable resource. Our foam is fully recyclable and is PBDE free and made without the use of CFC's. All of our soy-based foam cut offs are sent back to the pouring plan and made into carpet cushion. We use water based adhesives for bonding rather than solvent based.
CORES: Our cores are made of plastic and is 100% recyclable and reground into a reusable plastic resin. The only waste or scrap occurs when parts are molded and do not meet acceptable quality criteria. This waste material is sent back for recycling and used as a reprocessed resin in other parts.
UPHOLSTERY: We have sourced eco-friendly fabrics. Maharam Messenger is made of 78% post industrial polyester and Crypton is constantly improving ways it is greener.
PACKAGING: We use 100% recyclable corrugated cardboard for all of our packaging and print our assembly instructions right on our shipping box. We use a biodegradable plastic bag to protect Oi's from moisture during shipping.
CARBON OFF-SETS: We donate a portion of every sale to the 'Carbonfund' (www.carbonfund.org ).
In spring 2006, the Oi brand and signature "cellular" product was created by Cocoon Branding. Oi's innovative cellular furniture system was exhibited for the first time at the New York International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) to showcase brand-driven product design and to gain some new product design clients for Cocoon in the furniture industry. To our surprise, however, many attendees of the show (ie. interior designers, architects, press/media, and average consumers) really wanted to know where Oi could be purchased. Unfortunately, Oi was only a prototype, not market-ready, and not available for sale anywhere.
Upon return from New York and ICFF, our founding team (Craig Alun Smith, Kyle Romaniuk, Jason Abbott, and Blair Fox) consolidated our observations from the show and concluded to pursue commercializing Oi as a new venture outside of Cocoon.
Between May of 2008 and February of 2010 the founders worked in and around their regular day jobs to source suppliers for mass production, attain market knowledge, and achieved its first sales of the Oi cellular system.
In February 2010 we shipped our first orders - to consumers in Canada and the USA, to our first retailer Global Atomic Design, and to our first commercial customer Centreplace Manitoba at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver.
In April 2010, Oi was invited to pitch our business on a reality television show called Dragon's Den. Jason travelled to Toronto and filmed the segment scheduled to air in March 2011.
In June 2010, we attended and showcased Oi for the first time in Chicago at Neocon, and we engaged in conversations with many interested global brands including Target and McDonald's.
In November 2010, Oi was selected and 8 cells travelled to New York City where they were installed and featured as part of the 2010 WIRED Holiday Store.
In February 2011, Give Wink signed up as our first retailer in the USA and our first traditional retailer in North America.
In March 2011, our pitch on CBC's Dragon's Den aired on March 9, 2011.