90 Anniversary

One of the most successful furniture design brands thanks to its research on finishings, refinement of line and the technical quality of its details, Porro celebrated the 90th anniversary’s important milestone in 2015.

Founded in 1925 in the Brianza area, by tradition the Italian cradle of high-quality furniture manufacturing, today Porro is an international brand characterized by an intrinsic ability to select, work and interpret wood, offering an incredibly wide and accurate range of finishings and using it in unexpected ways by implementing cutting-edge technologies for glossy and matt lacquers alongside fine woodworking techniques of the past.

A true patrimony of the company, the wood selection is renewed every year and is personally managed by the Porro family – with their corporate background and expertise on the material – together with Piero Lissoni, who, as an architect and designer, continuously provides new inputs and applications. The viewpoint of the designer and that of the tailor intertwine into a one-of-a-kind palette: an incredible range of 16 solutions in which anyone can find his preferred wood type and use it at will in systems and parts of the collection.

Throughout the years, the company has also been able to reinterpret important traditions such as carving, wood bending, inlay and the combination of wood strips placed side-to-side in a modern and abstract way. Among the results, there are outstanding and award-winning projects such as the chair Gentle – “Best Seating 2013” – and the chest of drawers Mikado – “Best Furniture 2014” at the EDIDA, ELLE DECOR INTERNATIONAL DESIGN AWARDS.

The celebrations for the 90th birthday, gone on throughout 2015, started in December 2014 with the presentation of a collection of wooden spinning tops designed by Piero Lissoni at Porro Milanese showroom.

The 5 models, with alternate colour tones, theme variations coming in several combinations of materials and woods, were handmade, by turning the 16 essences of Porro’s collection, with the simple yet precious taste of daily, handmade objects and of artisanship.

Carrying on this course of research on the material and starting from the theme of "containing" typical of its work on systems, Porro celebrated the important milestone of its 90th birthday with a collection of wooden boxes designed by those who over the years have contributed to the success of the company, invited to freely use the 16 essences of the new collection of Porro woods playing with shapes and experimenting with particular modes of opening.

Among the designers giving their contribution Piergiorgio Cazzaniga, Front, Gamfratesi, Piero Lissoni, LucidiPevere, Alessandro Mendini, Neri&Hu, Elisa Ossino, Christophe Pillet, Soda Des/gners.

History

Porro was founded in Brianza, the traditional birthplace of Italian quality furniture. In the heart of this area, in the small town of Montesolaro of Carimate, the brothers Giulio and Stefano Porro, established in 1925 their first workshop dedicated to the production of old-style pieces of furniture produced for the newborn Milanese bourgeoisie.

The transition to second generation of Porro family, with the cousins Carlo, Arturo and Silvio, marked the turn to Modern style in the 50's, also thanks to the long and successful collaboration with the architect Giulio Moscatelli, who in 1955 designed the new workshop next to the family house.In the 60's the transformation in a real industry needed a new productive pole, opened in 1968.

Since its very beginning with some of the main Italian designers, such as Bruno Munari, who in 1966 was entrusted with the design of the corporate logo. From him came the idea of transforming to two Os of the name Porro into two screws seen from above, thus including in the symbol of a woodworking company its most representative working tool.

Since the mid eighties, when the third generation joined the company, the cousins Lorenzo, Fabio, Giovanni e Danilo Porro, design has become the driving force: the partnership with Piero Lissoni, art director since 1989, started right in that period. During the years, he has designed some of the company’s flagship products such as the table Ferro (1994), which is still a bestseller, a sculptural item that perfectly embodies the clean design of the brand.

The attendance to the Furniture Exhibition of Cologne, the cooperation with the German designers Wolfgang Tolk and Werner Aisslinger and the entrance in the German market, are the first steps of a coherent project of internationalization, which strengthens in the 90's, with the creation of an international network of sale agents and the participation to exhibitions on the 5 continents.

Among the targets of the new millennium, the enlargement of the manufacturing pole in 2000 with the building of a new warehouse of 14 thousand square meters and the opening in 2004 of the first mono-brand shop in via Durini 15, Milan.

The subsequent cooperation with external designers, among whom Christophe Pillet, Jean Marie Massaud, Front, Alessandro Mendini, Soda Designers, GamFratesi, further enhanced Porro catalogue: an all-round offer characterized by many designs, different sensitivities but with a consistent image and the ability to meet the most demanding requirements together. Today Porro Industria Mobili counts on the cooperation of more than 100 employees and over 600 retailers across the globe, with exports account for 50% of turnover

Philosophy

Since 1925 the Porro family manages a company supporting a unique furnishing philosophy, matching handicraft tradition of the time with the most modern advanced manufacturing and information technologies.

The furnishing culture as family wealth, together with the diktats, production is based on, that is formal cleanness, shape and function geometry, are the buttonholes allowing Porro to consistently get a more and more consistent international market share without forgetting or betraying its origins.

A Clear and simple project, standing out for its essential and immediately identifiable language, with minimal signs, geometries, shapes, without forgetting its unique company philosophy: simplicity above all.

All Porro products are the result of a subtraction and derive from a progressive simplification process. Even the systems, which are complex in themselves, are the result of a very simple aesthetic vision, based on consistency and simplification without forgetting the highest quality.

Coordinated image

Catalogues. Thanks to a coordinated and easily recognizable image, Porro catalogues stress once more Porro’s identity while spreading its space nearly architectural sensitivity. Pure volumes and soft ambiences which thanks to their natural appearance can furnish any room, essential and rigorous but eclectic and decorated as well.

Invitations. Porro communication is furthermore supported by invitations periodically sent by the brand to take part to the organized events. Impact graphics, study of attracting colours, for a image in line with the brand and other communication tools.

Newsletter. Every month Porro further develops a consistent dialogue with its reference public through a newsletter, the internal and external communication tool, recalling the main events taking place all over the world as well as new products, future meetings and most prestigious publications.

Website. The main communication tool all over the world, Porro web site is daily updated, to offer time information on the brand, the distribution, its prestigious contract projects as well as the possibility to access catalogues, limited access area to the designers and event reports as well.

Production

In a green area, directly linked to the company management offices and facilities, Porro production develops on a total 20,000 covered square meters, divided between the historical factory dating back to 1968 and the new unit built in the year 2000. Porro systems and collections are manufactured in a series of wide and enlightened departments, painted in white, perfectly in line with the minimal and essential languages, always featured by its furnishing units, where light stands out.
The different production steps follow one other – from the first processing to packaging up to the final shipping in perfect order, cleanness, essentiality, safety and care for the environment, perfectly matching manual and nearly handicraft processing activities to completely automated steps profiting from the latest production units and technologies, once more in a perfect balance between innovation and tradition as well.
The first panel processing. Porro production core is the panel processing (lacquered, veneered, in melamine or solid wood), the required raw material for its bookcase units, units and wardrobes. If in the case of the melamine panel, Porro profits from suitable designed papers, perfectly matching veins and grains, for the solid wood panels, Porro is one of the few companies customising its production as to sell its customers a product which only the handicraft mastery and expertise depending on a long lasting tradition can provide: a natural-looking product enriched by an industrial processing and design. The veneering and pressing department allows Porro to be internally liable for such an accurate processing, thus providing for the demanded top quality to its product surface. Then drilling is carried out on digitally controlled units.
Painting. Painting is internally managed within the company to provide for the best possible tone and quality. In the case of the panel, a veil painting is enforced, through a cascade painting unit which provides for a uniform colour or through a robot, with its mechanical arm and the automated colour change, simulating man spraying technique, thus offering for the best possible results in terms of quality. As for the collection units, asking for a manual and handicraft processing, there are the new pressurised painting booths, where temperature and moist are perfectly controlled, for a safe and healthy production process. Finally the final polishing and brightening, brushing the product with brightening pastes, carried out by outside specialised centres in compliance with the highest possible quality standards imposed by the company.
Final manufacturing steps. After painting, each unit is pre-assembled including any hardware, as to cut the final assembler requirements to the bare minimum. The production buttonhole for Porro is the new packaging department, recently entirely automated. Finally the product is moved to the shipping department: conveyor belts and counters automatically move any unit from a department to the following, throughout a production process which is constantly monitored through the information system, simply reading the bar codes on each unit, immediately telling histories and precise features as well.