Innovation First International

Innovation First International

Incorporated in 1996, Innovation First International (IFI) is a leader in educational robotics products and toys. Its subsidiaries include VEX Robotics, the leading classroom robotics platform and developer of the HEXBUG line of consumer robotics toys, and Rack Solutions, which works closely with all major computer original equipment manufacturers (OEMS) to provide custom mounting solutions and industry-wide rack compatibility for data installations. In 2015, IFI purchased over 250 acres in Greenville, Texas, across the street from their previous headquarters, and began planning their future workspace with considerate and intentional detail.




Greenville, Texas


Office Design, Product Selection, Office Furniture Installation, Project Management


The Challenge

As a company founded by engineers, IFI is known for its culture of innovation. To do their best work, its employees needed workspaces where they could focus deeply without interruption—but they also needed collaborative workspaces areas to discuss ideas with co-workers and engage in group work sessions. In anticipation of strong growth, another priority for the founders was future adaptability to their changing workforce needs. Spencer + Company partnered with IFI to provide office space design and product selection recommendations, as well as office furniture installation and workplace solutions project management for floors, workstations and furnishings covering 63,000 square feet.

The Solution

The new headquarters was designed to encourage creativity and employee engagement by supporting both focused and collaborative work styles. Workstations are faceted with glass panels, providing an open office space with natural light and visibility while preventing uninvited interruptions. Comfortable furnishings and ergonomic chairs are peppered throughout for impromptu group meetings, and a modern lounge area sits at the confluence of four main walkways, creating a collaborative space away from workstations. After a visit to the Spencer + Company showroom, IFI was inspired to leverage sky lights and natural lighting instead of traditional office lighting. All executive offices face the building’s exterior and feature floor-to-ceiling windows and glass walls. A motion-activated LED lighting system compliments the natural light, and reduces energy costs. Haworth’s Integrated Palette, which consists of integrated pieces that can be moved, swapped and rearranged in multiple ways, ensures the office design meets the needs of today, with the flexibility to adapt to future changes.

The Outcome

Spencer + Company’s office design, project management and commercial office furniture installation teams worked fluidly with IFI to ensure the space was everything the founders and employees envisioned. Raised floors hide power and cable cords, leaving a crisp, clean aesthetic throughout the open office space, and glass walls, natural light and efficient energy systems reduce electricity costs. Haworth’s Integrated Palette gives the entire space a clean, contemporary aesthetic — and employees enjoy working in a place where innovation is nurtured and encouraged, whether they are engaged in deep concentration or collaboration. Even the company cafeteria has a flexible design that fulfills multiple purposes, serving as a breakroom, conference room and charity event center for the many nonprofits IFI supports. The company’s mission is to teach and inspire the next generation about robotics—and its new headquarters creates the ideal environment to do just that.

“The Spencer team was extremely collaborative during the space design and furniture selection process. They accommodated our specific layout requirements, along with my critiques and engineering changes quickly and efficiently. The process was surprisingly painless and enjoyable.”

– Bob Mimlitch III, Co-Founder and CTO