Cultured caught up with the CEO of the outdoor furniture company, RODA, at their Miami showroom.
As the second generation in the development of your family’s company, how have you contributed to the growth of your brand? When my father passed it down to my brother and me, we needed to shift the commercial soul of the company into an industrial structure. We had to move from selling somebody else’s product to building our own product. In 2004, we started working with Rodolfo Dordoni—who is one of the top three designers in Italy now, but at that time, he hadn’t designed for an outdoor brand. The idea was to have an indoor mindset, designing outdoor furniture because in our opinion the outdoor proposal needed to have a different boost towards a design-driven approach. The success of RODA is the sum of every little detail, sometimes it’s hidden and sometimes we should show off a little more of our construction. But my father has been and still is the visionary of the company.
How has the development of design and use of materials changed since you became CEO of RODA? Actually, it’s a very nice question. We started with basic materials we knew like wood and metal, but immediately developed new materials that were not very familiar for the outdoor like polyester and ropes. For instance, in the latest collection we developed an upholstered sofa, DANDY, that is covered in a 3D mesh that covers everything and allows the water to pass through the sofa and circulates to self-dry.
How does RODA fit with the other companies under the Solesdi umbrella? We have been with Solesdi for the past three years in Mexico and when the opportunity arose to work with them in Miami, it was a fantastic option for both companies. We fit the brand’s approach of designing a house for outdoor living. RODA plays the role of connector between the inside part of the house, the mixed place, and the outside part.
Will you be working with any new designers? Actually, we work mainly with Rodolfo Dordoni and Gordon Guillaumier. We haven’t developed another line with another designer because we are relatively young and the concept of products that complement each other is best achieved when the hand that designs those products focuses on that spirit. There are still so many untold chapters for the RODA story to come.