Mr. Roger Swales

Mr. Roger Swales
Founding partner of
GRO design, Netherlands

Born in Shropshire, England, in 1966, Roger Swales founded GRO design in 1999 together with fellow British designers Roland Bird and Graham Hinde. For 19 years GRO has worked for industry leaders and A-brand clients across a broad spectrum of markets and product categories. These include: Nespresso, Sonos, Haier, LGE, Toto, Philips, Microsoft, Samsung, Beats Dr Dre, Novo Nordisk, Corona, Panasonic, Nokia, Heineken, Masterfoods, Océ, Unilever, Vodafone, Sara Lee, Denon, Grohe, Dorel, Maxi Cosi, NXT and CytoSMART.
GRO design has won numerous prestigious design awards, including IF, Red Dot, IDEA and IDEA gold. As a recognized and respected professional, Roger has served as a juror for the 2013/2014 International Design Excellence Awards (IDEA), a foremost authority on the state of design. The IF Product Design Awards in 2010 and at the Hong Kong Exporters’ Associate Adjudication and Forum in 2012 and 2013.
Before founding GRO, Roger studied product design at Bristol Polytechnic, winning the 1987 Royal Society of Arts Design Bursary for Small Electrical Goods. He then went on to work for Pentagram (London) and Philips Design (Netherlands). Notable projects included Philips Alessi (1994), for which he designed the water kettle and the citrus press concept, winning the Kho Liang Design Award. Roger also contributed to many key strategic projects at Philips Design including being a core team member of the Vision of the Future (1995), which won IDSA Gold.
“Peers recognize our design signature. Our work is said to have a ‘red thread’. I believe it is our ability and experience to concentrate on the relevant essentials, to cut out the waste, and amplify the spirit behind each of our designs that defines us as a creative studio.”
“Simple, iconic sketches continue to fascinate me. Sketching is powerful, as it allows a designer to visually think and freely explore. The way a line is drawn contains a spirit, energy, balance, personality and soul.”