Meet the Team

Meet the Team: Interface


6 Aug , 2019   Video

Now in their second year as our partners on Love That Design, Interface have worked to become innovators in their field. They don’t just talk about sustainability, but have taken their sustainable design to a whole new level. 

We spoke to Matt Hall, currently Regional Director of Sales at Interface UK, who passed on the baton to Zubair Ahmed, now Regional Director Middle East, and Luke Neale, Key Account Manager, to learn about the team’s strategy and future in the region.


About the brand’s ‘Secret Sauce’…

 

Matt: I guess our secret sauce has to be our sustainability story, which started back in 1994 by our CEO and founder, Ray Anderson. He was asked by one of his customers, “What are you doing for the environment?” At that point Ray did not have an environmental vision. He read a book by Paul Hawking called The Ecology of Commerce and he always described this moment as a spear in a chest moment. And that’s how Interface’s whole journey towards sustainability began. So for 25 years, our DNA has been around sustainability and what we give back to the environment. 

Zubair Ahmed, who recently stepped into Matt’s shoes as Regional Director of Interface, reiterates the brand’s commitment to sustainability.

Zubair: Everything that we do is centered around creating a better environment for the world.


“If nature would design a floor, what would it look like? That’s what we really think about at Interface”.

– Matt Hall, Regional Director of Sales, Interface UK


Luke: Interface has three very special core values – Sustainability, Innovation and Design – and we are also a socially inclusive business.

Matt: Another core value is to create extremely innovative products based around biophilic design, that really encompass nature as our inspiration. The question we ask is: “If nature would design a floor, what would it look like?” And that’s what we really think about at Interface. We really want to inspire our customers to create what we call positive spaces, spaces that evoke an emotional response when you walk into it.  At last year’s NeoCon, we launched carbon neutral flooring. So any person who buys an Interface carpet can receive a certificate that states that their product is completely carbon neutral.

Above from Left: Zubair Ahmed, Regional Director Middle East, Luke Neale, Key Account Manager, and Matt Hall, Regional Director of Sales at Interface UK.

Recent successes and challenges

Matt: It was one of our biggest years till date, which was pretty special for the company. The team gave an excellent performance and as a result, our brand and our values got recognised not only in the UAE, but certainly around the Middle East region. So we had a lot of success in Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, etc, in terms of brand awareness and education.

Zubair: Often we are relying on our partners to help represent our brand. So part of our mission is to make sure that our partners are fully up to speed with what we are doing in terms of our latest product launches, our innovations and our sustainability message.

Conducting business in the Middle East and Africa region

Luke: In the Middle East, we are a little bit different and a little bit special. We are the only region within our business, where we are able to source our product from six manufacturing locations around the world. What that means for our customers is that, we are able to offer the largest portfolio of products.

Future plans, direction and growth

Zubair: We are talking about launching a ReEntry Hub, which would give us the ability to recycle our flooring. We would be able to take back the carpets from a site and put them through a reuse facility, so that they do not end up in a landfill but rather, are reused for a noble cause.

Luke: And it goes full circle. We do well, by doing good.


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