Early Days
Design Presentation began operations in the early 1990s as a division of a New York-based sourcing company, assisting US and European firms in identifying vendors and providing Quality Control services for a wide variety of engineered products. The firm got into the CAD drafting services by accident, as a favor to a sourcing client. The first customer, in the late 1990s, a New York-based real estate company, hired Design Presentation to convert their archive of architectural blueprints into AutoCAD and upload them on the company’s website. It was then that it became clear that this could be a sustainable business, and the firm began to market the service to existing sourcing/QC clients. Before long, the division had grown sufficiently large to operate as a separate company, which was formed in New York in 2002 and incorporated in 2004.

Having developed a high degree of confidence in Design Presentation’s quality and reliability, clients began to ask for red-line changes, architectural detailing and 3D models. This presented a major challenge, as it required the firm to invest in training, installing new software and hiring new people. Re-creating engineering drawings is relatively easy, because very little judgment is required, but as one moves up the learning curve and tackles more complex assignments, there are often multiple solutions, and a certain amount of subjectivity and creativity is involved – and therefore quality control becomes harder to define.

Despite the challenges, it became clear that moving up the learning curve was important for the company to continue to expand and to provide a career path for its employees. While raster to vector CAD conversion will remain an important part of Design Presentation’s business, particularly since many companies are now switching from 2D CAD to 3D CAD (e.g. Revit, BIM), most of the company’s growth today is coming from new services such as CAD detailing, 3D modeling, renderings and 3D walkthroughs.

In 2006, a group of private angel investors, including Managing Directors at Goldman Sachs, Union Bank of Switzerland (UBS) and the International Finance Corporation, invested in the Design Presentation to fund international expansion. Today Design Presentation has over 100 professionals including Engineers, CAD experts, quantity surveyors, graphic designers, draftsmen and representatives in a dozen countries. The company has established subsidiaries and representative offices in Europe, Asia, Middle East and Australia.

Recent Expansion and Future Plans 
Having built a reputation for quality and reliability, Design Presentation’s goal is to become the leading global provider of CAD support services & BIM services serving both industry and governments. Growth will come from two sources: new, higher value-added services and additional geographies. Design Presentation has entered into Three new services; Quantity Surveying, HVAC Design & Creation of RDS & C-Sheets. Design Presenation has also tied up with a leading QS services provider in 2011, and have employed people experienced in the generation of RDS and c-sheets.