DB Shenker

Witfontein / Kempton Park

Trend’s refurbishment of DB Schenker’s South African offices showcased our ability to transform a space with subtle elegance, appropriate to this international logistics company, as well as manage a live site in which people continued to work whilst construction took place.

The design itself focused on differentiating the various departments – all of which have their own specialisation – within a largely open plan arrangement. The challenge was to infuse visual excitement into the workspace while maintaining a refined and restrained aesthetic.

Reception, being the first point of contact, received a significant refresh. The double-volume ceiling space was dressed up with modern furniture, including an elegant curved sofa and high-back armchairs on either side of the reception desk. Acoustic panels were strategically placed to control sound, and a world map feature wall behind the reception desk was updated. The large walls in the double volume stairwell areas in reception received timber cladding for a warm and almost imperceptibly African touch.

The open-plan areas of the main office were already structured with four wings on each floor, corresponding to different freight divisions. We introduced a feature wall in each division, which was an opportunity to introduce some visual excitement: blue for ocean freight, green for land, yellow for air, and orange for other divisions like IT and finance. These touches are set against a mainly neutral backdrop of grey and white.

 

The executive wing was given a more sophisticated set of finishes, with Italian Venetian stucco and boiserie details on feature walls. The main boardroom, a focal point, showcased both elements. Additionally, the boardroom underwent a subtle transformation with updated walls and carpets. The executive tea room was also enlarged and enclosed to create an informal meeting space with a high bar table and stools. A vinyl frosted fade on the glass shopfront division adds a touch of privacy to the space.

Tea rooms in the other wings were also updated with a fresh coat of paint and attractive tile backsplashes to the sink areas.

Despite some initial challenges, the project was successfully completed on time and within budget. The team’s commitment to understanding the client’s processes and needs, coupled with on-site presence throughout the project, allowed for quick responses and adaptability. Working around move management, the project ensured minimal disruption by moving one wing at a time.

In the end, the client received a more refreshed and modern workspace which is also a testament to our ability to transform spaces while meeting the unique needs and preferences of clients.