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1938 Franklin St
Detroit, MI 48207

Christian Unverzagt

What educational, entrepreneurial or business development programs, if any, have you taken advantage of?
None, besides the school of hard knocks.

Who was your first customer and where did you find them?
The practice grew out of relationships we had doing smaller pieces, but we wanted to step it up and expand the scope of our work. When we were approached by Radio One to design two pieces of furniture (a conference table and a reception desk), we proposed to design the spaces in their entirety so that they would be a complete work. They agreed.

Where did you find your first employee?
We hired two people at the same time: a young man was a recent University of Michigan graduate with a Bachelors in Fine Arts in Graphic Design who had studied architecture and a young woman from Los Angeles who drove across country to spend a summer working in the studio.

Have you promoted an intern to employee status, and if so how many times have you done it?
We do not hire interns.

Where have you turned to find capital to grow your company and which institutions have provided it?
None. No loans. No debt.

What is one thing Michigan does better or has going for it that other more successful regional economies don't?
Michigan has a highly-skilled and talented small-scale manufacturing base. We can find someone in the area to fabricate or construct absolutely anything we design.

It's often said that Metro Detroit and Michigan need to reinvent their economies to be competitive. Are we making those changes, and if so are we making enough of them or doing it fast enough?
There are a lot of young and interesting start-ups working in everything from energy to film to clothing, and I'm excited by that range of endeavors. I'm very disappointed in the recent decision to cut the funding incentives to the film industry, especially as it was just beginning to gain traction.

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