"wooden chairs that last a lifetime"
De Zetel is specialised in creating solid wooden chairs. Geert Behaegel is at the helm of this family company which ensures that sitting comfortably can be done on pure craftsmanship. His son, David Behaegel, is being readied to take over the torch in the not too distant future.
The smell of newly treated wood
Geert Behaegel: “With my grandfather being a furniture maker, the passion for wood has been engrained into us since we were children. My father and myself were unable to withstand the call of newly treated wood. De Zetel started with manufacturing kitchen and church chairs to then gradually move into producing chairs for furniture makers. Our clients – furniture manufacturers and project designers for the care sector and the catering industry – still like using extremely solid wooden chairs, and they are very pleased we still offer them. “
“I have grown up in our factory too. The passion for wood convinced me to build my career in the company. I was literally born between the tables and chairs and when I was small I was always interested in what was going on here. I had several holiday jobs when I was a teenager, helping in the production, and now I am on the road as a salesman. The point of this is that I want to have experienced every job there is within De Zetel before I take over from my father. In other words I will know what the various jobs entail, because I have done them myself”, says David Behaegel.
A constantly recurring question is the one why a chair manufacturer chooses a name like 'De Zetel'. “The answer really is simple, once you know it!” Geert tells us. “The name De Zetel stems from the stubbornness of my grandfather. In those days every furniture maker called themselves ‘Saint Joseph' according to the patron saint of the carpenters. My grandfather wanted to be called something else, a completely different name. And because the chairs that he made were as comfortable as armchairs, hence the name!”
Because De Zetel puts great store in innovation and always wants to keep up with the times, Z-Creations was launched. A collection of beautiful, comfortable and high quality wooden chairs at a reasonable price and suitable for the project market.
Geert: “Z-Creations calls on architects and designers like bOb van Reeth, Studio Segers, Stefan Schöning, Luc Vincent and so on. The solid wooden chairs are prime examples of design and quality and can be tailored to suit your individual wishes."
David: “Z-Creations has been established in order to be able to anticipate a design-oriented demand which is still affordable. In a continuously evolving market it is of paramount importance to keep up with trends and interests. Z-Creations is the perfect example of this: a trendy collection at a fair price."
De Zetel is the last wooden chair manufacturer in the BeNeLux and as such is unique on the market. Honesty and durability are high on the list of De Zetel’s priorities. We go all out for durability and respect for materials and people. It has become a philosophy which we all back 100%. Durability is seen as a large concept encompassing durable relationships with customers, suppliers and staff. Of course we also look after and respect our environment. We receive the raw materials from Mother Nature, and it goes without saying that we should treat her with respect. The factory halls and offices are heated exclusively with recycled wood waste, for instance,” according to Geert.
“In the future too we will still keep to our durability policy. We want to continue to invest so we can minimise our ecological footprint. That is why our customers can be sure they are choosing a green and sustainable product", David adds.
No De Zetel without its employees
Geert: “Our customers like a quality wooden chair whose comfort lasts a lifetime. If we are talking about manufacturing a wooden chair, we truly are the experts, no doubt. We control the whole production process from A to Z and each part is produced by us. We invest constantly in our machinery in order to be able to meet the market's demands. Creating a chair is still pure craftsmanship to us and we do this using the best quality raw materials and employees who are experts at what they do. From the purchaser of supplies to the people in the office to the craftsmen in the factory, every single one of them contributes to the success of De Zetel. What’s more, without the efforts of our employees there would simply be no De Zetel. I always feel confident when I leave the factory, knowing that it is in good hands.”
“A client-oriented and flexible approach will always be important, in the future too. Moreover, De Zetel will concentrate more and more on markets outside of Europe. We are proud of our products and the world is witness to that. De Zetel will also keep on respecting values such as authenticity and durability, even though we live in a rapidly-changing society. Those opting for De Zetel, are opting for an extremely solid quality, honesty and openness. The flexibility, the urge for innovation and the fast service we throw in for good measure. We will also continue to invest in new collections for the project market as well as for furniture manufacturers. And last but not least, we will keep on striving for durable relationships, which, just like our chairs, last a lifetime...", David concludes.