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Dansk International Designs is an Americanmarker retailer of Scandinavian Design-style cooking and serving utensils and other home furnishings, established by Ted Nierenberg after discovering handcrafted tableware by industrial designer Jens Quistgaard on a 1950s trip to Denmarkmarker. The company has been known for its sleek, functional products often made of exotic woods such as teak, combined with enameled metal and stainless steel

History

On a trip to Europe in May 1954, American Ted Nierenberg visited a museum in Copenhagenmarker, where he saw a set of unique flatware on display that combined teak handles and stainless steel, created by artist and industrial designer Jens Quistgaard. Nierenberg tracked down Quistgaard and spoke with him in an effort to convince him to manufacture the cutlery, but Quistgaard insisted that the pieces could only be forged by hand, one piece at a time. Nierenberg was able to convince Quistgaard that the pieces could be mass produced, leading to Dansk International Design's first product, the Fjord line, which has been one of the firm's enduring bestsellers.

Dansk was established that same year by Nierenberg and his wife in the garage of their Great Neck, New Yorkmarker home, with Quistgaard as its founding designer. By 1956, Nierenberg was able to get an order for several hundred units from a New York Citymarker store, and the business took off from there. By 1958, Nierengard and Quistgaard had expanded Dansk's wares to include teak magazine racks and stools, stoneware casseroles and salt and pepper shakers, and flatware with split cane handles, with The New York Times that year as "creating a stir" as "some of the most popular accessories found in American homes". By 1982, Quistgaard had created more than 2,000 different designs for Dansk of dinnerware, glassware and items for the home.

Dansk relocated its headquarters to Mount Kisco, New Yorkmarker in the 1960s.

Dansk was purchased in June 1985 by Dansk Acquisition Corp. in a deal initiated by Goldman Sachs.

In December 1988, Dansk International Designs purchased the Gorham Manufacturing Company, a manufacturer of sterling silver and silverplate. from Textron for an undisclosed price.

Dansk was acquired in 1991 by the Brown-Forman Corporation and incorporated together under its Lenox subsidiary. James E. Solomon, then 36 years old, was appointed as president of the newly combined company, having previously been a general manager of a company that manufactured children's athletic shoes. Solomon succeeded Richard Ryan, who had presided for five years in a period in which the company expanded significantly.

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