BMW’s Designworks Ignites Innovation in Egypt’s Forbes International Tower Project

Designworks creates User Experience Design for Forbes International Tower

Designworks, the innovation studio of the BMW Group, has joined forces with real estate developer Magnom Properties to craft an emotionally engaging design for the façade of Egypt’s new Forbes International Tower. This collaboration aims to mark a significant milestone in sustainable urban development in the Middle East. The architects behind the project, Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill, conceptualized a 230-meter (755-foot)-tall building that seeks to establish a modern symbiosis between architecture and the environment. In line with this vision, the Designworks team will integrate features such as reflection, illumination, and digital interactivity into their design to foster a harmonious connection between the building, the surrounding environment, and the occupants and visitors.

Beyond the exterior design, Designworks will also be responsible for creating a seamless user journey across all physical and digital touchpoints of the EV charging park. Leveraging the BMW Group’s experience design process, which prioritizes customer needs, the team aims to provide visitors with a completely new experience of the building, both from the outside and the inside. Magnom Properties CEO Maged Marie emphasizes that the collaboration with Designworks aligns perfectly with their vision of creating an exceptional experience that integrates innovative technologies.

The 55-story business tower, a collaborative effort with Forbes, is planned to be part of Cairo’s new administrative and financial district. Boasting over 100,000 square meters (328,000 sq. ft.) of space, it is set to establish a new benchmark for sustainable architecture, aiming to minimize the building’s carbon footprint and achieve the highest certifications for ecological construction.

Holger Hampf, head of Designworks, highlights the BMW Group’s commitment to sustainability, stating, “The BMW Group was the world’s first car manufacturer to have its own environmental protection officer, and today, sustainability is at the heart of the company´s focus – far beyond the automobile.” As a subsidiary of the BMW Group, Designworks is proud to contribute to the design of the Forbes International Tower, believing that high-quality design can influence customer mindsets and behavior, promoting more responsible action.

The Forbes International Tower in Egypt is scheduled for completion in 2027, with plans for additional commercial towers of similar design in the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia.


Designworks and Selle Royal launch first saddle specifically designed for e-bikes

Designworks and Selle Royal launch first saddle specifically designed for e-bikes

Designworks and Selle Royal launch first saddle specifically designed for e-bikes

Selle Royal has teamed up with BMW Group subsidiary Designworks to develop a saddle specifically designed for the needs of e-mobility. The result of this collaboration is eZone, a saddle with a unique gesture that improves e-bike safety, comfort and riding performance. To pinpoint the specific performance characteristics that could be improved with an innovative e-bike saddle design, the two companies conducted the first comprehensive study of e-bike users

Unique design requirements for e-bike mobility.

Until recently there were no studies available on the particular usage characteristics of an e-bike and how these affect saddle comfort and support. Consequently, up until now saddles marketed specifically for e-bikes have essentially been slight variations of traditional bicycle saddles. Selle Royal set out to fill this market gap and just released eZone, a saddle specifically designed for modern commuter, leisure, touring, off road and urban e-bikes. Marketing manager Lara Cunico said: “The big discovery of our research conducted with Designworks is that the characteristics of e-bikes are in many ways distinctly different to those of non-electric bikes. This led us to re-think our product in its entirety. We pushed the realms of expertise in the industry to develop a completely new type of saddle, different from any other product on the market. eZone is the outcome of an amazing project… and this is just the beginning.”

Designworks and Selle Royal launch first saddle specifically designed for e-bikes

Zonal design for comfort and safety.

E-bike users experience a different kind of compressive force when quickly accelerating, shifting abruptly to a higher gear or breaking to avoid collision. In fact, road safety studies have shown that slipping off of ‘flat’ traditional saddles is the number one cause of e-bike accidents. ´Enhancing confidence and therefore freedom during the ride` were also two of the main desires that crystallized during the consumer research process. To enhance the rider’s security, confidence, comfort and performance in any situation, the design team introduced the concept of the ‘comfort atlas’. It defines zones that speak to the different requirements of e-bike users, adding safety during acceleration and stopping as well as enhanced control and balance during the ride. The ‘comfort atlas’ also led to the innovative shape of the e-bike saddle: The rear zone of the saddle was raised to prevent backward sliding and a shorter nose was introduced to make mounting easier. Wings were added with which the rider can steer and adapt thrust with precision. An integrated fiberglass handle allows for easy maneuvering. The saddle is padded with a tridimensional gel structure that reduces pressure peaks by up to 40%.

With its innovative design, Selle Royal´s new e-bike saddle is a perfect complement to the all-new BMW Active Hybrid e-Bike, the latest addition to the bike collection of BMW Lifestyle for which Designworks is also the design partner. Thanks to the integrated Brose electric engine featuring a power of 250 W, torque of 90 Nm and capacity of 504 Wh, the e-bike is extremely dynamic and agile.

Selle Royal´s eZone will be available for purchase from October 2017 at and through Selle Royal’s selected retailers.