Felix Fridman, ZIPIT’s Head of Design shares with us the challenges and successes of the past couple of years, he also shares a peek as to what the future has in store for the brand development.
2021 was a record year for ZIPIT sales, partly thanks to you and your team’s hard work last year, which was far from a normal year for anyone on the globe. Do you think Covid contributed to your creativity boost?
Well, you said it, it was a year that defies the imagination and yet it was the trigger for enhanced creativity within our team. In a way the uncertainty and isolation contributed to our wish to emerge from this year stronger. Our inspiration thrived, and when we finally were able to meet up, a fountain of ideas overflowed. This resulted in new patent submissions, the introduction of two new product categories, as well as an additional couple of very promising new concepts, which are still in the pipeline, and which we plan to introduce towards the end of 2022.
What new product were you most excited to see succeed this year?
For us as designers it has been the success of the new Recycled Plastic Boxes in the US, Canadian and Mexican Markets. This was a step into a new world of design and production. In the development phase we challenged ourselves to create a premium product with a unique selling proposition that would break into a crowded, price driven category. The successful sales of this new line during the back-to-school season of 2021, and the large order commitments received for 2022 back to school, have given us the boost we needed to continue expanding and enhancing this exciting new product category.
How did you end up finalizing which items made the cut and what happened to all the ideas that ‘overflowed’ as you say?
Our team invested in following market trends and one of our key tasks is to interpret these into accurate product development implementation. Each year as we enter our planning phase, we must consult our crystal ball…
Last year we saw the world celebrating ‘back-to-school’ hand in hand with Covid vaccinations, and that was our theme, the projects that made the cut all fit in with this vision.
Happily, our wish came true, and though hybrid learning is here to stay, most schools opened their doors again this year and shoppers returned to retail stores.
What is the new concept for 2022 and which new product launches are you most excited about?
People all over the world have experienced a rough couple of years and this is not over yet. It feels to us as if we all need tools to help us relax, focus, and destress. So, our theme for 2022 is focusing on the senses, we set out to incorporate tactile and sensory aspects in our new development projects.
One of the most exciting new products we are about launch in retail is the ZIP & POP Series that is incorporating the trending silicone fidget toy into functional storage products. We have just launched a fantastic range of Pencil Boxes that are playful and multifunctional storage solutions. And we look forward to expanding the series rapidly as we see a real demand for the concept.
In addition, we have experimented with mixing new tactile materials in both our One Long Zipper pouches and our Storage Boxes. In 2022 you will see new furry animals and monsters joining the family and when it comes to our boxes, we have incorporated sporty 3D mesh tops, soft corduroy and velour tops and a glamorous sequin top.
Some of these new products will already be available for the early birds on just-zipit.com this spring, and all the rest will be waiting for our customers on the retail shelves during back-to-school 2022 this summer.
Any other development innovations and plans you can share with us?
I can share with you that we are working on new patents, while continuing to explore and experiment with unique material combinations and that we have exciting projects already brewing for 2023.