Venerable Portland Office Furnishings Supplier Acquired by Local Entrepreneurs
New Owners Matt Newstrom and Shastan Jee Plan to Retain All Existing Company Employees, Bolster Customer Service Focus with Strategic Consulting
Local business executives Matt Newstrom and Shastan Jee announced they have acquired 70+-year-old Portland commercial furnishings supplier and Oregon Steelcase distribution partner SmithCFI.
Newstrom and Jee purchased the company from longtime owners Jeff Iwasaki and Tom McDougal in December and formally took over the business effective January 3. Employees were informed of the transition on December 27.
“I’m excited for Matt and Shastan, and for the benefits I know their ownership will deliver over time to SmithCFI employees and clients,” Iwasaki said. “I’m confident SmithCFI will remain a thriving, dynamic company, and new opportunities will emerge as they apply their considerable intelligence, drive, and creativity to the business.”
Under its new ownership SmithCFI will retain all employees. Operations will be business as usual, with no changes in customers’ current SmithCFI contacts and interface. Both Newstrom and Jee will work out of SmithCFI’s Portland showroom/headquarters while maintaining offices in Bend, OR and the Operations Center located on Swan Island
Newstrom comes to SmithCFI from commercial real estate advisory firm JLL, where he was Managing Director of Oregon’s Project and Development Services group. He has a breadth of experience in strategic planning, design, workplace strategy and construction. “We love leading and growing teams,” Newstrom said. “I come from operations, consulting and commercial real estate, so this is a natural career transition for me and will deepen the level of resources that our clients are asking for.”
Jee joins the company after a long tenure at Nike, where he served as global General Manager of its direct-to-consumer launch business. “I have a love for both commercial real estate and design, and this marries the two,” Jee said. “As a native Oregonian, I’m excited to focus on contributing to the Portland business community.”
Iwasaki and McDougal will stay on staff for a month after the ownership transfer to facilitate the transition, and will consult throughout 2017.
For more than 70 years SmithCFI has been providing exceptional service to customers in Oregon and around the country, having built a solid reputation by creating a team of knowledgeable top quality employees. SmithCFI is Oregon’s distribution partner for Steelcase and has been a multi-year recipient of Steelcase’s Premier Partner award, recognizing achievement of the highest level of customer satisfaction and business practice development.
About Steelcase Inc.
For over 100 years, Steelcase Inc. has helped create great experiences for the world’s leading organizations, across industries. We demonstrate this through our family of brands – including Steelcase®, Coalesse®, Designtex®, PolyVision® and Turnstone®. Together, they offer a comprehensive portfolio of architecture, furniture and technology products and services designed to unlock human promise and support social, economic and environmental sustainability. We are globally accessible through a network of channels, including over 800 dealer locations. Steelcase is a global, industry-leading and publicly traded company with fiscal 2016 revenue of $3.1 billion.