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South Africa, Consumer
Founded in Istanbul by Mehtap Obuz, the Demirden is one of Turkey’s leading design and brand management firms. With the help of her brother Hasan Obuz, Mehtap is launching a home décor product line called “ilio” in hopes of achieving success beyond Turkey’s borders. The siblings have a track record when it comes to design. Demirden is already an elite design consulting brand, and ilio products have encountered much success.
The Obuz siblings are grandchildren of the famous Turkish painter Abidin Dino, and were raised by parents who encouraged creativity. Mehtap graduated from Turkey’s top design university. She later worked for an architecture firm, before leaving to establish her own firm. She hand crafted hand-made iron chairs, tables, and lighting accessories. She turned the successful shop into Demirden Design.
As the firm grew, it became a family business. Her brother Hasan helped the company’s exhibition design, and her sister Sema, an award-winning graphic designer joined the company in 1996. Working together, they landed elite multinational clients such as Apple and Turkcell.
Since then, Demirden has steadily built out its capacity, adding new service lines such as retail design, brand and corporate consulting. With its local talent and operations, Demirden can undercut prices set by larger international design firms, while still delivering higher-quality projects than domestic competitors. Leveraging their strong brand, they launched a home accessories line. Beyond brick-and-mortar retail, ilio products have fared especially well in online channels, luring partners such as Gilt Groupe.
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