Thursday, January 1, 2009

About Lou

Lou Sagar is a recognized trend innovator in home, art, and consumer lifestyle retailing. As the founder of ZONA, the distinctive specialty home and lifestyle retailer, Lou built a showcase emporium for his pioneering development of lifestyle merchandising. In 1980, he opened his flagship store in the Soho area of New York, anticipating the emergence of Soho as an international destination for art and design. During a span of 17 years, he built a world-class lifestyle brand with nine retail locations and substantial wholesale operations distributing private label home furnishings, and lifestyle products throughout the United States, Europe, and Japan. An accomplished author and speaker, Lou Sagar is widely regarded for his trend-setting home and lifestyle book Zona Home published in 1998 by Harper Collins. In 1998, he sold his company to a private investment group.

Between 1998, and 2000, Lou worked on assignments with AOL, I-Village, and Oxygen Media, advising specialty retailers on the strategic benefits of online banner advertising, as a compliment to traditional media, including, brand positioning, early-stage click-stream analytics, and search. These early adopters included Godiva, J. Crew, Sharper Image, and Lands End.

In 2001, Lou launched a boutique consultative practice supervising the integration of the web as an online distribution channel for specialty retailing marketers and assisting executive leaders, such as Eileen Fisher, with new business development and strategic partnership formation.

Between 2006 and 2008, Lou joined ABC Home, and worked closely with founder Paulette Cole, to redirect the brand, product assortment and merchandising towards eco-friendly and sustainable materials in furnishings, and accessories.

Since 2008, Lou has concentrated on advising a diverse range of clients as a business consultant and social strategist. The role of the social strategist is to advise and supervise brand presence on the Internet, including website, blogs, and all engagement on social networks. He has an exceptional understanding of this emerging field, having worked with clients from small entrepreneurial start-ups to larger organizations. Recent engagements have included,, eBay, the Uniform Project and Dean and Deluca.

In 2010, Lou connected his interest in social strategic work with art and culture. He was a co-producer of the acclaimed “conversation” between Ai Weiwei, China’s leading contemporary artist/activist and Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter on the topic of digital activism in China held at the Paley Center for Media in New York City. Lou continues to work closely with the artist in web and marketing development. Lou has advised “The Art of Basketball”, a collaboration between PWD, the NBA, and leading street and graffiti artists for the launch of the brand during Art Basel Miami. He advised the Cracking Art Group of Rome, creators of the famous Pink Snails Project.

He is a senior director to The GreenShows, a firm dedicated to the future of retailing sustainably produced fashion, jewelry, and accessories, and serves as a senior team member for The Lakeside Collaborative, a boutique retail consultancy to major Museums.


Clients + Projects

Internet and Web-Technology

The Uniform Project
Oxygen Media

Home, Fashion and Lifestyle

AHA Life
The GreenShows
Restore Clothing
ABC Home
Dean & Deluca
Eileen Fisher
Victoria's Secret
Putumayo World Music
Urban Outfitters
Tommy Boy Records

Art and Museums

Barnes Foundation
Friends of the Highline
Ai Weiwei, Circle of Animals, Zodiac Heads, World Tour 2011-12
Miami Art Museum
Museum of Arts and Design
The Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum
Lincoln Center for Performing Arts
Cartoon Museum
The Core Club
Pratt Institute
Museums Magazine


Trends 2012

Here are some of the trends we are working on:

Digital Activism
Rise of “Trust Agents” as points of Influence
Convergence of Philanthropy, Fashion, Sustainability, + Commerce
Public Relations becoming Social Relations
e-Commerce influenced by Social Commerce.
The Impact of Hyperlocal News Delivery on Small Business
Collaborations between Artists and Marketers
In Praise of Slowness – Applications, Products, Merchandising
Home Furnishings and Lifestyle Products - Limited Editions


What We Do

Business Agent:

We represent leading online brands, arts organizations and luxury marketers, with an emphasis on storytelling, strategic collaborations, and sales development. We have multi-disciplinary expertise, essential when launching a new business enterprise. We join your team, and work collaboratively to articulate your goals, formulate strategy, and can assemble the resources to provide follow-thru on the execution of your business plan.

Key Areas of Focus:

Brand Strategy and Positioning
Social Network Integration into Web Sites, Platforms, and Blogs
Social Media Campaigns
Business Planning
Market Research
Investor Presentations
Licensing and J.V. Strategic Partnerships


Vision 2013

In 2012, Marketers increasingly made efforts to embrace social media and we anticipate that the demand for consultation and talent for digital strategy design will grow across industries. We intend to work selectively as strategic advisors complimented with our swat team of experts and a network of resources. We work with clients on their digital strategy first, then assist or supervise tactical execution for a measureable set of deliverables.

We work selectively and intimately with a diverse mix of companies in the retail, art, and lifestyle industries. We excel in assisting entrepreneurial professionals, artists, designers, and thought leaders, seeking to manage and expand their brand/image using social media tools.

Our goal is to apply strategic thinking to how you and your business is branded and positioned. We are collaborative, team-oriented, and have a strong network of resources and expertise.

The earlier we are involved in the process, the more impactful we can be.


About OSV

The idea for Old School Ventures originated with the comfort associated with being “old school”.

Back in the Day
Less Complicated
Legends and Stories
Design and Style

Today, more than ever, it's about storytelling. Social media tools, thoughtfully assembled, enable us to communicate a message and stay engaged with the marketplace and customers.


How We Work

We work on assignment, on a project basis. Fees are established based on the scope of work, the expertise required, and the timeline for the deliverables.


Contact Us

Executive Office
Lou Sagar
Old School Ventures
598 Broadway, Suite 12E
New York, New York 10012

T 917.743.3747

Click here to email us.


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