Rowland Design acquired by Cincinnati architectural firm

Indianapolis-based architectural firm Rowland Design—one of the city’s largest and oldest commercial interior design firms—has been acquired by Luminaut, one of Cincinnati’s largest design firms.

The companies announced the deal, which quietly closed last year, on Tuesday. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Rowland, which was founded by Sallie Rowland in 1968, will change its name to Luminaut Rowland in Indianapolis as part of the deal.

Matt Erdman, CEO of Luminaut, told the Cincinnati Business Courier that all 17 Rowland employees, including its five partners, have joined the combined firm.

Erdman said his firm grew about 20% by adding Rowland. He expects the company, which now has 48 total employees, to have 2022 revenue of about $10 million. Luminaut is the 12th largest architectural firm in Cincinnati, according to the Cincinnati Business Courier.

The combined firm, Erdman told the newspaper, hopes to add about five employees between the two offices over the next year.

The acquisition helps Luminaut grow both geographically and in the specialties of higher education, Greek housing, workplace design and historic preservation.

Luminaut’s strengths are in hospitality, bars, restaurants, workplace, and senior living projects.

Rowland Design, 702 N. Capitol Avenue, was founded as an interior design firm but added architectural services in 1994 when Sallie Rowland’s son, Eric, joined the firm. Eric Rowland remains with the firm as a partner and chief architect.

Sallie Rowland, who retired from day-to-day operations of the firm in 2003, was a business pioneer in Indianapolis. She was co-founder of the Central Indiana Corporate Partnership, first woman president of the Economic Club of Indianapolis, first women campaign chair for the United Way of Central Indiana and first woman president of the Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission

Rowland Design was named Indiana Firm of the Year in 2019 by the American Institute of Architects.

“Today marks the beginning of an exciting new chapter for Rowland Design, one where we will be able to forge connections between our neighboring communities of Cincinnati and Indianapolis,” said Rowland President Jill Rose, one of the firm’s five partners. “We’re pleased to be merging our company with one which shares our values and which will allow us to expand our business and do even more and better work for our clients.”

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