The company Dorre was founded in 1963 by Ove and Inga-Lisa Johansson in Borlänge and was initially run in the family's basement. At this time, the range consisted mainly of brass and wrought iron made by local craftsmen.
After about ten years, Dorre had grown out of the basement and the business was moved to the current premises. These have since been added to in stages, to now include headquarters, warehouses and stores. In the mid-1980s, it was time for sons Lars and Christer to take over the operation. At first, the structure remained unchanged, but as competition intensified, production shifted first to Europe and then to Asia. In parallel with this, the range developed towards kitchen items and became wider, with a large number of news launches each season.
A well-established family business
Nowadays, Dorre is run as a family business in the third generation by Lars' two sons Robin and Roy, together with Lars and Christer as support. There are three business areas, Kitchen, Bar and Living, where all products are produced in-house, by Robin and Roy, Christer and Lars. Manufacturing takes place in China and India, among other places, with the help of a local sourcing office in Shanghai. In addition, Robin and Roy make several trips a year to visit their suppliers.
“It is a great challenge to take over the company from Lars and Christer. We want to run it further under the same auspices, so as not to 'change a winning concept'. At the same time, we are working to streamline the purchasing process to make it faster, ”says Robin Johansson. Speed and flexibility are key factors in Dorre's business concept. The company has only seven employees, which provides short decision paths and enables a fast process for product development and launch. At the same time, the office in Shanghai is there to guarantee the standard of the products.
Believe in speed to market
“We believe in speed to market. In today's changing retail landscape, you always need to have a small lead. Dorre is not a trend-setting company, but we are quick to catch the trends. The risk for us is that we buy more than we can sell. On the other hand, we have the opportunity to bring home best-selling products once again before the end of the season, ”Robin continues. He says that he and Roy get a lot of their design inspiration from magazines, blog posts and physical stores. In addition, staff in Asia contribute insights into what is going well in other markets. The brothers' uncle, Christer, is also involved as a consultant in producing news.
“It is very exciting to see how we can continue to develop Dorre in the future. It is a well-established company, which Roy and I grew up with, which means that you get the feeling in your spinal cord ", says Robin.
In recent years, Dorre has become more known and recognized by the common man. This may in part have to do with the packaging's design, which has been redesigned to be nicer and more contemporary. In addition, they are now working more and more with beautiful environmental images at their online retailers, which has received a very good response from customers in the form of increased purchasing power. With the growing e-commerce, you also look at the format of the boxes, so that they can be sent without problems.
For the future, Robin and Roy want to reach even more people with their message about who Dorre is and what the brand stands for, in terms of heritage, history and quality. When it comes to product development, they are, among other things, broadening the kitchen area to be able to offer a complete kitchen range for smaller stores. Another focus area is Living, which is the newest business area and perhaps the most difficult to define. Here, people are currently looking a lot at small furniture, which is still suitable for e-commerce. The bar segment describes the brothers as one of the company's strong cards.
Open up for new opportunities
Today, Dorre is primarily on the Swedish market and through online retailers also in Norway, Denmark and Finland. In addition, a collaboration has recently been initiated with a platform in Europe. "Our focus is definitely on Sweden so far, while we are open to inquiries and new ideas," explains Roy.
Regarding Dorre's own website and online store, it is planned to update it to an even more attractive version. The entire brand's range is available here, as well as information about the company. In the long run, they also want to take a bigger grip on social media, which right now is only linked to the store in Borlänge and the surrounding area. "The idea with our website is that it should function as an inspiring showroom, where you as a customer also have the opportunity to buy the products," Roy continues. There are also two physical showrooms in Gothenburg and Stockholm, the latter of which will be open throughout the Formex week.
The plan ahead for Dorre is that the company will have continued sustainable growth, which can provide support for developing the business further. “We are still a relatively small company, with the strength that we have competitive prices. Sometimes it can be difficult to compete with the big competitors, who have larger volumes. At the same time, it is also an opportunity, in that we can still pick up market shares where we are active and in new markets, ”Robin concludes.
This is a report from Designbase - https://designbase.se/generationsskifte-i-familjef%C3%B6retaget