David and Adam Light are the dynamic father-son duo who launched Icon By Design in 2015 to address a major gap in the retail furniture market for affordable solid timber furniture with great design. Today, the brand is synonymous with timeless style, sustainability and stellar customer service. Adam is now fifth generation in this furniture business which draws on the past with a clear view of the future. We chat with David and Adam about their working relationship, their plans for the future and what they’re doing for Father’s Day.
How was Icon By Design born? What values underpin your business?
Adam: I had a previous business called Icon Homeware when David decided to join me. We soon realised it made sense to focus solely on furniture and decided to run a factory direct to the consumer business model rather than a drop ship model. So, we went overseas together, found a great factory, and the rest, as they say, is history.
David: Until we started Icon By Design, it was expensive to source well designed, beautifully crafted solid wood furniture in Australia due to outdated supply chain models with middlemen such as wholesalers and distributors who drove up the cost. By removing the middleman, Icon By Design has overturned the old supply chain, helping customers save big on beautifully crafted furniture with our pre-order model.
Our brand values have always been clear: attention to detail and serving our customers well. Our items are derived from classic styles and updated to reflect contemporary design principles. Our products are made from solid timber and we focus on sustainability throughout the supply chain. Our products are great value considering the design, craftsmanship and solid timber manufacturing.
Adam, what sort of a dad is David?
Adam: David is an intelligent man – I joke that he took a disproportionate amount of the brains amongst his siblings! One of my fondest memories is going with him to a Super Bowl a few years ago which was a fantastic experience. We have a few shared interests – my dog Walter, cars, fly fishing, motorsport and NFL.
What have you learnt from each other when it comes to business? Are you both very different individuals or is Adam a chip off the old block?
David: We are very different individuals with complementary skills so we work well together and learn from each other. Sometimes, it’s a case of the younger generation learning from the older – and vice versa. Part of Icon By Design’s success is the highly integrated way all aspects of the business work together. I am customer service, data and process driven. Adam is customer engagement, product range and operations driven. Every day is a chance for growth, development and new learning and we thrive on it.
What can Icon By Design customers look forward to this Spring?
Adam: Our new Olivia sofa collection has launched to much acclaim and will soon be available in solid walnut timber as well. The Stefan dining chairs and Magnus extension tables will also be offered in solid walnut. If you like the Franz armchair and footrest, you’ll be happy to know we’ll soon carry it in off-white fabric.
Lastly, what plans for Father’s Day?
Adam: I’m sure dad is looking forward to a delicious home-cooked big breakfast with the family. After that, we’ll be at our stores, serving our customers. Happy Father’s Day to all you wonderful dads out there.