Interview with Christiane Nasr, founder & MD of The Bowery Company

Dubai based and established in 2014 by Christiane Nasr, The Bowery Company is the leading award-winning GCC online concept store for the urban customer seeking affordable luxury furniture with a striking design edge. It offers customers access to a curated selection of design furniture and accessories from countries such as Denmark, Sweden, France, Belgium and The Netherlands. Harmonies spoke with Christiane Nasr about her plans for the future.

Tell us how you started The Bowery Company
In the summer of 2014, I was walking through New York’s Bowery Avenue, in New York – a super edgy avenue running through Manhattan – and I saw many industrial lightings fixture shops along the avenue and I got the idea of bringing these to Dubai. At the time, there were not many designer shops or brands in the U.A.E. catering to this style. I came back to Dubai and without even working on a business plan – I ordered my first container of furniture and home accessories! After that I registered my license and launched operations on 24th February 2015.

Why did you decide to expand to a physical space?
At the start The Bowery Company offered more home accessories sourced from Scandinavian countries. Across the years, The Bowery Company’s profile expanded and started to have larger items of furniture, such as sofas, armchairs and sideboards. Naturally the request of viewing the larger pieces by customers became more frequent. Understandably they wanted to see the quality and materials of items articles with a higher price point. Designers would also request to show their clients pieces in person for projects so it became inevitable that The Bowery Company had to open a physical space.

What are the difficulties & challenges you faced during the worldwide pandemic crisis?
Luckily for me, I didn’t see the pandemic as a challenge in regards to my business. It gave me the opportunity and time to work around my business to transform it and grow. I was able to capture a larger audience with everyone staying at home, wanting to change their space, which benefitted me and the boost from that has allowed me to grow even more and increase the brands of our portfolio.

Tell us more about the newly launched studio in Dubai
Our new 5,000 sqft flagship concept store is home to our showroom, an in-house built warehouse facility, a coffee shop as well as an innovative workspace environment for our interior designers’ community. We strive to be an innovative multi-disciplinary design space with like-minded people to gain inspiration & give a sense of at-home.

What are the exclusive brands stocked by The Bowery Company? Can you tell us if you will be getting any new brands to the Middle East region?
Since the launch in 2014 The Bowery Company has brought many new brands to the region. We are the biggest retail partner for Ferm Living in the GCC with the largest stock quantity in the region. The Bowery Company is the exclusive distributor of 101 Copenhagen and NORR11, two of the most prominent design brands in Denmark as well as Europe. The Bowery Company is also very proud to be the first to bring design brands Bolia & HAY (early November) to the region on a retail front as well be the first to launch FÉST Amsterdam in the region.

Do you have any further expansion plans in the region or internationally?
Most likely the next step for The Bowery Company will be to look at Saudi Arabia – physically as well as online. Our reach is already implemented there as we have clientry which we deliver to as well as working on specific projects, however we would love to maximize on that in the near future to also have a physical presence there.

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