09 - Nov - 2017
CI Select Partners with Knoll to Launch New Omaha Showroom
CI Select, a 30-year leader in workplace design and furnishings for the corporate, education, health care, government, hospitality and nonprofit sectors, announces its expansion into the growing Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska
ST. LOUIS, Mo. — CI Select, a 30-year leader in workplace design and furnishings for the corporate, education, health care, government, hospitality and nonprofit sectors, announces its expansion into the growing Omaha and Lincoln, Nebraska, markets with a grand opening of the new Omaha showroom on November 9, 2017.
The expansion comes after Knoll, a nationally recognized leader in contemporary workplace environments, reached out to CI Select and expressed interest in a joint venture. “We were looking to expand our business, and simultaneously, Knoll was looking for a dealer partner in the Omaha and Lincoln areas,” said Claire Erker, President. “Knoll is one of our biggest manufacturers, and we have an exclusive relationship. They were looking for a strong dealer partner, and we are one of their top ten dealers in the country.”
“There are many large opportunities and lots of corporate headquarters in Omaha. The city is very progressive and has some of the top design firms in the country,” Erker replied when asked about her view of the market and community where the new CI Select showroom is based.
Leading the list of Fortune 100 corporate headquarters located in Omaha is Berkshire Hathaway, the legendary investment firm lead by the “Oracle of Omaha” Warren Buffet. TD Ameritrade also calls Omaha home, expanding its national presence after closing on its acquisition of Scottrade Financial Services in September.
When asked what sets CI Select apart from other firms, Jamie Shook, CI Select director of client solutions and Omaha director, said, “Our owners and our leadership — they’re progressive, but they’re conservative in ways that matter. Everything is very intentional, and decisions aren’t taken lightly. They hire very wisely.”
Responding to the same question, Erker said, “Our people, showroom, and the fact that we offer furniture, flooring, audiovisual, and architectural elements make us unique. We can supply everything for the modern workplace.” The process of designing the new Omaha showroom, which started early this year, has been thoughtful and deliberate, resulting in an outstanding experience that CI Select is eager to share with its new neighbors. Erker explained the approach in the design of the new facility. “Clients want to be able to see and touch the products — it’s very reflective of the new ways people are working.”
CI Select has been named a Top Workplace in St. Louis for 2016 and 2017, and it is the only furniture company on that prestigious list. Shook believes the company’s employees and management team are major reasons its partnership with Knoll has been so successful. “We have great employees and great talent,” said Shook. “We don’t just talk the talk, we walk the walk as well. We want clients to come to our showroom and envision how it could work for their company.”
Shook has relocated from St. Louis to Omaha in order to manage the new operation. Joining her are Lisa Kaderly, director of business development, and Audrey Dobbe, sales account executive / Knoll representative. Kaderly has worked with designers in Omaha for the last 20 years, and she commented that she and the rest of the Omaha community feel confident about this expansion with CI Select and Knoll.
“Knoll hasn’t been represented in an Omaha showroom in a very long time,” said Kaderly. “It’s an iconic brand, and the A&D community is hungry for its presence here. The response to CI Select and Knoll has been overwhelmingly positive — everyone is excited to see our space and is eager to partner with us on their projects.”
Having recently joined the CI Select team, Lisa knew she wanted to be part of this experience right from the start. “I recognized there was no other operation quite like it in Omaha: the business model, the energy, and the commitment to excellence was very appealing.”
The team is positively excited about the Omaha grand opening. Asked about further expansion, Shook said, “I think that’s definitely an option. We’re the ninth largest Knoll dealership in the country, which is remarkable because we’re not in New York or Los Angeles. Our message to the Nebraska market is that we’re the new kids on the block, but we’re not new to this!”