Who We Are

BENU is a young and trendy Russian brand of writing instruments and accessories. Its story began in January 2016 when Co-Founders Alex Semanin and Kate Dmitrieva decided to join forces to set up а new creative concept. Right from the start, the aim was clear—to make writing instruments and desk accessories for those who prefer bold, bright colours and new designs that are playful, stylish and fun.

 

Both Alex and Kate have experience in fine watch, jewellery and home décor markets, launching multiple successful projects over the last 15 years. Being great admirers of the art of creating fountain pens, they decided to create BENU—a new brand of writing pens and accessories.

 

The first collection of BENU pens was launched in October 2016 with their efforts, the help of several contractors and the immense support of family and friends.

Kate Dmitrieva - Managing Director

Alex Semanin - Chief Designer

From the very beginning, Alex was responsible for design and production and Kate was in charge of marketing, sales, customer service and business operations. Only towards the end of 2017, Kate and Alex started working with BENU’s first dealers and hired more people to join their small team.

 

Despite being a very young brand, BENU has already gained international recognition among writing instrument enthusiasts. Its pens and accessories are available in almost every part of the world—the Americas, Europe, Asia, and Oceania. Every day, more and more dealers are joining the BENU family, representing the brand and selling their products.

The earliest representation of the mythical Phoenix - the ancient Egyptian Benu bird

BENU Brand

The Benu is an ancient Egyptian deity associated with the sun, creation and rebirth. The Benu bird is also one of the oldest known names of the phoenix, a majestic and divine creature that dies and is reborn throughout time.

There are three reasons behind the founders’ decision to use BENU as a brand name. First, despite being a deity, the Benu is also a bird. The fact that quills are one of the most well-known prototypes of fountain pens and most commonly used symbols of writing instruments makes a bird a perfect symbolic representation of a company that produces pens and desk accessories. 

Another reason is connected to the origin of the name and general design concept. Benu is related to the verb weben (wbn) that can be translated as “rise in brilliance.” Given the provocative, bright, sparkling, and daring colour combination and design, the name suits the brand perfectly.

Finally, the Benu bird being a symbol of constant change, recurrence, and renovation, perfectly convey the founders’ view on the current state of the writing instruments industry. Changing throughout centuries, in today’s digital world, handwriting has become more of an art than a communication tool. Pens are much less needed nowadays as we have computers, tablets and smartphones, yet interest in stylish writing instruments remains high among trendsetters. Moreover, an expensive and stylish pen not only becomes a tool but also an important accessory. A beautiful pen is a status symbol or a personal item that reflects the taste of its owner. BENU is reinventing and redefining the art of writing.

Who We Are

All BENU products are designed by and manufactured under the supervision of Co-Founder and Chief Designer Alex Semanin. From hand-drawn sketches and CAD-drawings developed with our experienced product engineer to proprietary methods of material production and finished product quality control techniques—everything is either done personally by Alex or with the help of his small yet highly professional team. 

Alex graduated from the St. Petersburg State University of Culture and Arts. Since then, he has devoted his professional life to the decorative arts and the design and production of jewellery, watches and accessories. Alex also has vast experience and interest in restoring antiques, old paintings, and icons—thanks to his very first job right after graduation at the Ulyanovsk Regional Art Museum, one of the oldest museums in the Volga region in Russia that preserves the valuable cultural heritage of national and global significance.

Alex Semanin - Chief Designer

Chief Designer

All BENU products are designed by and manufactured under the supervision of Co-Founder and Chief Designer Alex Semanin. From hand-drawn sketches and CAD-drawings developed with our experienced product engineer to proprietary methods of material production and finished product quality control techniques—everything is either done personally by Alex or with the help of his small yet highly professional team. 

Alex graduated from the St. Petersburg State University of Culture and Arts. Since then, he has devoted his professional life to the decorative arts and the design and production of jewellery, watches and accessories. Alex also has vast experience and interest in restoring antiques, old paintings, and icons—thanks to his very first job right after graduation at the Ulyanovsk Regional Art Museum, one of the oldest museums in the Volga region in Russia that preserves the valuable cultural heritage of national and global significance.

Alex Semanin - Chief Designer

During his tenure, Alex got a unique chance to study and do restorative work on the true masterpieces of the 16th and 17th century Western European art of France, Spain, and the Netherlands as well as restorative and preservative work for decorative and applied art, including antique ceramics of the 3rd and 4th centuries BC. i.e. porcelain from Russia, Germany and France, art furniture, Russian and Western European glass. 

 

This experience shaped one of Alex’s major professional interests—studying and experimenting with the traditional methods and techniques of applied art, jewellery, furniture and icon-painting. Read more 

What Makes Us Truly Different

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Emotive Design

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Exclusive material

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Distinctive Finish

© 2020 by BENU 

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