Design 1st on Growth Trajectory as Customers Seek Product Design Expertise

Steady Stream of Custom Products Delivered to Market, Multiple Industry Accolades, and over 25% Increase in Newly Signed Clients Cements Company as Go-to-Source for Technically Challenging Hardgoods Product Designs 

January 11, 2021 – Design 1st, one of the most trusted full-service product design-engineering firms across North America, today announced significant growth in 2021 across North America with an increase of nearly 60% growth in new client project development activity compared to the previous fiscal year.

Alongside this business growth in a year of unpredictability, Design 1st was recently named a 2021 Top Global Design Agency by independent B2B review platform, Clutch, and received co-design award accolades for client projects in the manufacturing and consumer markets.

Additionally, four new client projects were successfully launched in market and the company expects to see an increase of nearly 200% of new client projects delivered to market in 2022. This reinforces the value and expertise Design 1st brings to helping businesses of all sizes – transforming their product concept into a market-ready product that balances the user needs and business strategy.For over 30 years, Design 1st has helped guide customers, from entrepreneur to enterprise, through all stages of the product design and development process. Design 1st balances deep expertise in new tech, usability, materials, component supply and risk assessment with global manufacturing expertise and network to provide an end-to-end service. Design 1st has designed and developed over 1,000 products for a wide range of clients, that influence millions of people globally.

Business success highlights include:

  • Nearly 60% growth in new client project development activity
  • 50% YoY growth in new COVID –related projects
  • 5% employee growth

“We know that business success relies heavily on user value and the overall experience your product provides. We are steadfast in providing the necessary end-to-end services and capabilities to help turn a concept into a high-quality product that WOWs the user and provides business advantage in your market,” said Kevin Bailey, CEO, Design 1st.

“2021 was a great year for many of our clients and we take pride in the role we played in their success. We look forward to partnering with innovators to guide them along the product design path, and enterprise organizations looking to add speed or expertise to their development team and help them predictably deliver a winning product to market.”

A Year of Unpredictability and Opportunity2021 was a year of unpredictability that continued to impact how we live, work and purchase goods and services. Changes in climate, fears of inflation, global supply chain effects on availability, and a shift in the types and purchasing of goods and services consumers want, were all contributing factors. Design 1st successfully navigated these hurdles and supported the hardware product design lifecycle for clients.

The company saw six customer projects across a variety of industries successfully launched in market in 2021, notably:

  • GeoSight SCOUT
    • A next-generation wireless borehole deviation tool that features the most advanced technology to survey drillholes of unlimited depth.
    • It can be lowered down a 1-inch drillhole and enables operators to quickly and accurately survey drillholes in the harshest environments.
    • Designed using an inertia measurement unit (IMU) and depth encoder for accurate mapping, GeoSight SCOUT also features a rechargeable battery system, a laser for geo-referencing from the collar of each hole, wireless connectivity for immediate data transfer, and humidity balancing to ensure the tool adjusts to pressure and temperature changes.
  • FunkkOFFTeethRefreshers®
    • Described as the “1st Beauty Essential for Your Teeth” and a must have with you when you’re on-the-go to refresh your teeth. It is elegant and easy to use – just twist the bottom, brush, rinse and smile! Compact and reusable by design, FunkkOFF! TeethRefreshers® is environmentally friendly and contains all natural, proprietary tooth gel, which is SLS-Free, Fluoride-Free, BPA-Free, Gluten-Free and Vegan.
  • JessEM Tool Company’s next-generation woodworking router.
    • JessEM is an established supplier in the woodworking industry and turned to Design 1st for help in redesigning a better router for use in a router table. The Design 1st product development team developed a number of unique features to improve overall user experience and comply to JessEM’s high quality product standards.
    • This new woodworking router motor excels when used in a router table and offers far better performance in the application.

Industry Recognition

In addition to receiving business achievement awards from Clutch, Design 1st also won a 2022 Canadian Business Award for the Best Product Design Company. Adding to the accolades, several customer projects co-designed by Design 1st received recognition for product design excellence. These include:

  • DECCO the toddler monitor was a GRANDS PRIX DU DESIGN GOLD winner and was recognized for ‘Industrial Design & Product Design Discipline and ‘Consumer Electronics Subcategory. The GRANDS PRIX DU DESIGN Awards celebrate excellence, the creative talent of professionals and the clients who put their trust in them.
  • GeoSight’s GSM-16 Rugged LiDAR Scanner was a 2021 Mining Technology Excellence Award finalist in the ‘Sector Excellence: Exploration’ category. The global awards celebrate the greatest achievements and innovations in the mining industry.
  • Zumio i, a women’s health and wellness product, won a 2021 A’ Design Award in the “Adult toys product design’ category. The A\’ Design Award and Competition is the worlds\’ largest design competition based in Milan Italy, awarding best designs, design concepts and products & services.

About Design 1st

Design 1st is one of the most trusted full-service product design firms across North America, with a seasoned team consisting of diverse technical expertise, over 1,000 projects developed, and 130 client patents secured. From Startup to Enterprise, we enable companies to quickly scale capabilities throughout their new product development programs by leveraging our core competencies in industrial design, mechanical engineering, electronics engineering, embedded firmware, and manufacturing setup. Design 1st\’s plug-in experienced team has helped clients transform their physical ideas into commercialized hardware products across a variety of industries and influenced millions of people globally. To learn more, visit