Design Competition 2022

Many of the world’s renowned and revered Architects and Interior Designers have also designed some of the most famous and iconic furniture currently in production. Frank Lloyd Wright, Mies Van Der Rohe, Zaha Hadid, Le Corbusier, Arne Jacobsen, Michael Graves, Frank Gehry, to name but a few, apparently found furniture design to be another challenging outlet for their creativity.

We are looking for talented and creative people who feel the same way.

You are invited and encouraged to participate in the inaugural 2022 Benchmark Contract Furniture Design Competition. There is no registration/entry fee to participate.

DIRECTIVE: Submit an original design for a commercial outdoor dining chair and table collection.

The products must be designed to withstand the rigors of high traffic outdoor environments.

The pieces will be used in general public spaces.

Successful designs should evoke positive feelings and curiosity.  The modern design of the pieces should be equally at home in a hospitality, restaurant, or retail setting.

Materials are limited to aluminum, stainless steel and faux wood. If faux wood is utilized, no single member can be larger than ¾” thick x 2.75” wide.

Who Should Enter

The competition is open to any Architect, Landscape Architect, Interior Designer or Furniture Designer, based in North America.



The product must be conceptual, never previously produced, displayed or currently in any phase of research or development.

Send us your idea, drawings and a maximum of 4 renderings. Please email your entry to [email protected] (Only PDF files are accepted).

To enter, prepare and submit:

A Product Concept (approx. 100 words) and Narrative Statement (maximum 500 words) that define your product, outline its purpose, and explain material choices.  Provide front view, side view, and perspective scaled drawings or renderings for each piece.

By virtue of your submission, you agree that Benchmark Contract Furniture will have full rights to use the work as they see fit without any additional approval. If your design places either 1st or 2nd in the competition, you agree that Benchmark has the exclusive right to build and sell the product for a period of 15 years in North America and Europe.  We have the right to publish images of the design freely, and without notifying you or obtaining further permission.

All submissions must be sent in electronic format (PDF only) and must include a short BIO of the designer (max 500 words) with designer contact information including name, address, phone number and email

No hard copy submissions are accepted.

Submissions are due September 30, 2022 in the form outlined above.

Judging Panel

Judging will be performed by a mix of nationally recognized design professionals from the retail, hospitality and corporate worlds.  Benchmark Contract Furniture teamed up with Italian designer, Arizona-based Antonio Larosa, to coordinate and chair the judging panel.

Judges for the 2022 Benchmark Design Competition.

Mark Carroll, CEO Benchmark Contract Furniture – Jacksonville Beach, FL

Antonio Larosa-Furniture Designer – Phoenix, AZ

Andy Lugo, EVP Development/ Construction-Turnberry Associates – Aventura, FL

Mark Cahill, Director of Architecture-Simon Property Group- Indianapolis, IN

John Ward, Partner-505 Design – Boulder, CO


Q & A

Q: What are the dates of the competition?

A: The competition opens on July 20, 2022 and closes on September 30, 2022.

Q: Is there a fee for entering?

A: No entry fee.

Q: Can I submit multiple ideas?

A: Yes, maximum of 2 ideas per designer.

Q: What are the judging criteria?

A: Excellence of aesthetic expression, manufacturability and economic potential of the concept design.

Q: Will I still own the rights to my design?

A: Yes, you own rights to your design. But you license the design exclusively to Benchmark Contract Furniture to manufacture and distribute for 15 years.

Q: Is there a cash prize?

A: Yes. The winning design will receive $2500 and the second-place finisher will receive $1000.

Q: If my design is selected and built, will I receive royalties?

A: Yes, if and when the design becomes a reality, you will receive compensation in the amount of 5% of the sales price. This will apply indefinitely, as long as Benchmark has the sole rights to the design.

Q: What if my design does not win, but Benchmark wants to produce it will I still get royalties?

A: Yes, If your design does not win, but Benchmark decided to produce your design, Benchmark will notify you that your design will be produced and royalties will be paid to you.  This will apply indefinitely, as long as Benchmark has the sole rights to the design.

Representations and Indemnification

Submissions are required to be original work product by the Entrant, not previously published, may not have won previous awards, and must not infringe upon the copyrights, trademarks, rights of privacy, publicity or other intellectual property or other rights of any person or entity.


As a condition of submission, each Entrant agrees that Benchmark Contract Furniture, anyone acting on behalf of Benchmark, and Benchmarks’ licensees, successors and assigns, shall have the right, where permitted by law, to print, publish, broadcast, distribute and use, in any media now known or hereafter developed, for 15 years and throughout North America and Europe, without limitation, Entrant’s submission, name, portrait, picture, voice, likeness, image, statements about the competition and biographical information for news, publicity, information, trade, advertising, public relations and promotional purposes, without any further compensation, notice, review or consent.


As a condition of receiving any prize, a winner agrees to participate in reasonable publicity and public relations activity at Benchmark’s request, including but not limited to conducting in-person, virtual, phone or written interviews and delivering public statements along with consenting to Benchmarks’ use of the winners name, photo and likeness (see Publicity section for more information).

Any questions or requests for clarification, should be directed to [email protected].
For more information and updates please visit

About Benchmark Contract Furniture

Benchmark Contract Furniture, headquartered in Jacksonville Beach, Florida with representation nationally, serves the development and related architectural and design communities  by designing, manufacturing, and distributing quality public space furniture to the Retail Development, Hospitality, Institutional, Healthcare and Food Service markets. Started in 1996 by Mark Carroll, Benchmark has become a trusted, long term partner with some of the largest, most respected development firms, hotel chains, and restaurant chains in the country. Benchmark actively covers clients in all 50 states and is represented by 16 firms and over 50 individual sales people. Benchmark employs a unique combination of design expertise and industry knowledge to constantly deliver superior product and service to its customers.