Satya Tiwari is president of Surya’s U.S. division. He started his career as an investment banker after graduating from Northwestern University with degrees in computer engineering and economics. In 2004 he joined Surya with the goal of building the family business into a global brand.
Today Surya is a recognized industry leader offering the widest selection of rugs and coordinated accessories in the United States. Surya currently works with 75 percent of the top U.S. furniture retailers, leading hospitality and design services companies, as well as global retailers. Surya proudly serves more than 5,000 independent retailers and interior designers. Surya was named to Inc. magazine’s “500/5000” list of the fastest growing privately held companies in the United States in 2010,2011 and 2012.
Surya leverages the talents of emerging and world-renowned designers, such as HGTV-host Candice Olson and Emmy-award winning costume designer Bob Mackie, to create inspirational and trend-driven designs. Many of Surya’s products are manufactured in its India-based facilities, although it is increasing its use of innovative manufacturers in Europe, Asia and Africa.
Tiwari, who is committed to sustainable communities, is proud that Surya is the employer of choice for 50,000 weavers in India. This employment, along with Tiwari’s community involvement, provides local financial stability so that the artisan craft of rug weaving can be preserved. In addition, Tiwari is a board member for two nonprofit organizations, East Meets West and Akshaya Patra, that are committed to improving the quality of lives in rural communities in Asia by elevating the accessibility and quality of healthcare and education.
Q: What is Surya’s involvement in the High Point Market?
A: Surya has been involved with High Point Market for over a decade. We are one of the leading sponsors for the High Point Market Authority, sponsoring each season’s main concert, the daily shuttles, cycle rickshaws and several registration related items. We believe industry associations play a vital role for designers and retailers. We’ve become a sponsor to support the good work of organizations such as ASID. We have focused our creative marketing efforts to inspire and inform designers and retailers about the latest trends. We work with some of the leading furniture manufacturers by placing products in their showroom to provide greater context for market attendees. We also provide breakfast, lunch and afternoon cocktails daily during market — helping customers to relax, recharge and be effective during their time at the show.
Q: Why do you believe the High Point Market is so important to the design community?
A: It’s a one-stop shop for designers and provides a great environment to discover fresh new inspirations and products. Designers can buy a full spectrum of products for their projects, whether it be from a boutique manufacturer or a large national brand. The market has been incredibly effective in making information readily accessible and providing resources that value designers’ time. Surya is designer-friendly and we believe that designers are the primary influencers for our brand. We embrace their partnership as a vital part of our team.
Q: What advice would you give new designers or first-time attendees of the High Point Market?
A: Due to its size, the High Point Market is somewhat fragmented and can be daunting for designers. We advise designers coming to the show to do their homework prior to arrival, including creating a plan for seeing all the key manufacturers they’d like to visit. We invite the design community to visit the Surya showrooms in the morning for a hot breakfast and stop by late in the day for cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and some great engagement with other designers from across the country.
Q: What are you most looking forward to during High Point’s Fall 2013 Market?
A: We always get inspired by the creativity that the many vendors and visitors bring to the Market. It’s exciting to see what new directions others are exploring, and it helps to validate that the trends we’re bringing our customers are on target. It’s a great opportunity for the exchange of new ideas. Hearing the perspectives of our buyers and designers always drives us to create better, more relevant products.
Q: What can visitors expect to see at Surya’s showroom at the Market?
A: In addition to our core product line, we are very excited to debut Surya’s new accent furniture, mirror and lighting collections. Our mirror collection includes an assortment of decorative frames, available in a variety of finishes and both beveled and non-beveled designs. Surya will also offer a custom mirror program that enables customers to “design” a one-of-a-kind mirror, which is then hand cut in the United States. Surya’s inaugural lighting collection comprises a selection of decorative table lamps in a range of colors and styles designed to add warmth and ambience to any space.
We are also hosting several engaging events in our showroom including a design talk with Candice Olson on Saturday, Oct. 19 at 2 p.m., a social media panel discussion on Sunday, Oct. 20 at 4 p.m. featuring design thought leaders such as Maxwell Ryan, founder of Apartment Therapy, and daily trend walks and merchandising tours. We hope Market visitors will explore all of Surya’s colorful new introductions and innovative sales tools during High Point Fall 2013 Market in the brand’s Showplace 4100 flagship location. The Surya showroom will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
Q: What inspired your decision to expand Surya’s product line to include lighting and mirrors?
A: Our core focus at Surya is to constantly improve the customer experience by providing always fresh and relevant home accessories that come together seamlessly to create inspired living environments. The addition of our new lighting and mirror product lines, together with coordinating ceramics, was a natural extension as we address our customers’ desire for a wider array of home decor offerings across all price points, while delivering the quality and signature style for which the Surya brand has become known. With the entry into mirrors and lighting, we are able to offer our retail and designer customers an even wider selection of on-trend and relevant home decor products while streamlining the shopping experience. Our expansion into these categories is part of our strategy to develop a fully coordinating product portfolio that corresponds with a variety of lifestyles and home decor preferences — enabling customers to easily design a complete room that reflects their individual style.
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