Born in Tehran, Iran, Sohrab Vossoughi moved to the United States in 1971. He earned an industrial design degree from San Jose State University, and worked first for Hewlett-Packard Corp. and then as an independent consultant before starting product development firm Ziba Design in Beaverton, Ore., in 1984. Recently named a "guru of innovation" by BusinessWeek magazine, Vossoughi directs projects for an extensive client list that includes Acer, Black & Decker, Clorox, Dell Computer, Ethicon, Ford Motor Co., HP, KitchenAid, Procter & Gamble, Logitech, Motorola, Nike, Sharp, Siemens and Whirlpool, among others.
Ziba, with offices in Germany, Taiwan and Japan, has earned many patents and won numerous design awards. One of its higher-profile clients recently has been Lenovo Group, China´s largest computer manufacturer. After buying IBM Corp.´s personal-computer business, Lenovo hired Ziba to study how Chinese consumers use electronics, and to help it redesign and rebrand its PC product line.