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UN Secretary General gets furniture from Austria

4. December 2012

Furniture specialists from Austria have been refurnishing the office of Ban Ki-moon at the UN headquarters in New York

The Austrian companies Svoboda Büromöbel and Wittmann Möbelwerkstätten are renowned for their artisan knowhow and their ability to meet the demands of the most discerning clientele. Now Svoboda and Wittmann are also represented at the UN headquarters in New York – with design pieces in the recently refurbished office of Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

While Svoboda made the desk which was developed in collaboration with US architects, the seating was produced by Wittmann to designs by Jugendstil designer Josef Hoffmann. The Kubus chair is completely timeless in its design as well as in the long life of the exquisite materials used. Working the UN logo from steel elements into the front panel of the eucalyptus desk posed a particular challenge for the Svoboda specialists – a complex combination of high precision laser work and detailed craftsmanship.

Svoboda, a family-run company now in its third generation, operates mainly on the European market. Exports account for 15%. In the business year 2011/2012 the company generated revenue of EUR 33 million and employed 230 staff.

Founded as a saddlery in 1896, in the 1950s Wittmann began working with renowned architects and designers to produce its first pieces of furniture. Today Wittmann furniture is sold in more than 50 countries and exports account for 70% of the sales of this well-established, international, family-run company.

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