It’s hard to miss the Cypress Waters sign as you turn onto Olympus Blvd in Coppell. One of at least twenty Live-Work-Play communities being built in the Dallas region—it blends the area’s natural resources with modern brick buildings that are home to apartments and offices.
On the ground floor of one of those buildings, with a view of North Lake, is Avantor Lab Design & Furniture, delivered by VWR. It moved into this facility in March 2023 from Irving, where it had been for 25 years.
“During the pandemic the Irving office closed, and we used that time to reimagine what our workspace should look like,” said Matthew Maybury, furniture specialist. “We’ve created a space that supports innovation and functions as a showroom—it’s the first-of-its-kind for lab furniture in the Metroplex.”
An innovative space for a growing need
Gopi Thakker—whose role is part account management, part business development—is heading up the remodel of Avantor’s new location. She says clients run the gamut from knowing exactly what they want, to just having a budget and a general idea.
“Sometimes people come in looking for something specific, like a sink with a knee space. Other times, they want a whole laboratory makeover, and need everything from ideas to installation” said Thakker.
Avantor’s Lab Design and Furniture sales specialist team is complemented by designers, estimators, project managers and project coordinators—and has a reputation for quality and service. Thakker and Maybury think this is part of why Avantor kept the name, when it acquired VWR six years ago.
Already a major player in the life sciences industry, Avantor had a presence in biopharma, education, government, and applied materials. With the acquisition of VWR in 2017, they gained expertise in lab furniture—Thakker thinks the Dallas region itself also made the deal attractive.
“Real estate costs are more reasonable compared to other big cities on the coasts; life sciences is a growing industry; and DFW is home to several big health systems—plus the region has a ready supply of well-educated talent,” she said.
Serving diverse industries
Avantor’s client base taps them for products such as carts and drawers, to million-dollar renovations.
“I could be on the phone with a professor at Harvard and then my next call is a guy who’s been harvesting weed all day out in Colorado—and they’re both talking about the same thing,” said Maybury
They both need to equip lab space with things like workstations, fume hoods, and bio-safety cabinets.
The new showroom/design center in Cypress Waters can be toured by appointment, and Avantor will continue to do virtual demonstrations as well—a Covid holdover.
Voices contributor Nicole Ward is a data journalist at the Dallas Regional Chamber.
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