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Meet David Benz of Vaughan Benz

Today we’d like to introduce you to David Benz.

Thanks for sharing your story with us David. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
My partner Scott Vaughan and I were working for a small cabinet shop in the mid-198os on Jefferson Blvd.: Scott was trained as an architect and was drafting furniture the old fashioned way (before CAD was invented ): by pencil, and I was the owner’s assistant. The owner fell ill and passed away. He Left the business (which was fledgling) to me, Scott and a brother. Scott and I got along and gave the brother a nice truck as compensation for his share of the business. That was the start of our company.

Scott and I were both CA natives and knew that real estate was “where its at” in terms of becoming financially stable. We therefore borrowed from friend and family alike, and in December of 1986, we purchased a rather large industrial park in what was then called South Central LA to which we moved our factory. The only reason we could afford the property was the sellers did not ask too many questions: we were young and didn’t have much credit.

We struggled for several years ago making mostly high-end residential custom furniture for local designers. LA was then the incipient capital of hotel interior design.

Has it been a smooth road?
It has not been a smooth road.

Being forced to move by the city of LA was a big challenge, and we needed the advice of expert attorneys to navigate us through that “minefield”. The high cost of labor in the United States forced us to think globally. The financial crisis and crash of 2008 caused huge downward price pressure in my industry and brought in a large number of new competitors manufacturing inexpensive furniture from China and other Asian countries at low prices with inferior quality.

Tariffs on Chinese bedroom furniture imported into the US assessed very unevenly and unfairly forced us to move some production to Vietnam (which has free trade with the United States). While we fully support the excellent work of the South Coast Air Quality Management district which has greatly improved LA’s air quality, they forced us to change our finishing procedures in Los Angeles in order to meet the new air quality standards.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
We are one of the world’s leading manufacturers of custom made 5-star quality hotel furniture. We are known for our outstanding quality and execution. We work with the world’s leading hotel interior designers. What sets us apart as a company is our very high commitment to superb quality and execution of the designers’vision.

I’m very proud that. in spite of globalization, we’ve managed to retain our outstanding Los Angeles-based staff. In the 31 years that we’ve been in business (since 1986), I’ve seen factory workers buy homes, become US citizens, raise children, and put their kids through college, and live the American dream. We currently have three outstanding office workers whose fathers (all immigrants to the United States from Latin America) started working as carpenters at Vaughan Benz many years ago: they are the second generation of the same families that have careers at Vaughan Benz.

What sets us apart. I feel. is both the commitment to quality and the “family atmosphere” that we foster in our company’s corporate culture.

What was your favorite childhood memory?
I grew up from age 11 to 16 in La Jolla. My favorite childhood memory is riding my bike to the beach nearly every day in summer and hanging out at the beach all hours!

Contact Info:

  • Address: 1635 N. Main Street, Los Angeles, CA 90012
  • Website: vaughanbenz.com
  • Phone: 323 752 4555
  • Email: david@vaughanbenz.com
  • Instagram: Vaughan Benz
  • Facebook: Vaughan Benz

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