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An Interview with BOBO Founder, Mark Sage



What was it like growing up?
I grew up in Omaha, Nebraska. It was an all-American upbringing, if there is such a thing. I played football, hung out with friends and got in to as much trouble as humanly possible!

What is your craziest childhood story? 
This was in the early 80’s - I attended the University of Nebraska and became a pretty big bookie. I always liked gambling on sports and was kind of big into horse racing. I learned early on that the house always wins. I eventually got busted in my senior year!

Where’s the coolest place you’ve traveled to?
My very first international trip was to Moscow, Russia. I worked franchising hair salons between 93-98 and I lived between Paris, Moscow, & Minneapolis during that time. Russia in 1993 was crazy! It truly changed my life and vision and became the precursor to what I do now.

What’s your favorite nearby getaway? 
Definitely our cabin in Elijay, Ga. They’re 7 historic log cabins built in 1822. As featured in Garden & Gun Magazine, it’s the most unique piece of property in all of Gilmer County/North Ga. There’s a river that runs through the property. It’s also available for rent on VRBO! 
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What did you do before BOBO?
I first worked for The Barbers Incorporated franchising hair salons in Russia & France. After that ended, I started selling antiques under the company Love Train Antiques. I started BOBO Intriguing Objects in 2005 right after that, more focused on vintage reproductions.

What would you be doing if you weren’t selling furniture?
If someone told me that I’d be a furniture manufacturer I would’ve just said that they were crazy! If I wasn’t selling furniture, I would probably be doing something in the clothing or music industry.

What’s your biggest inspiration for BOBO?
Inspiration really comes from finding a great antique. If I buy an antique chair and have multiple people fighting for that chair, it doesn’t take a genius to realize we have a winning product.

What do you love most about buying antiques?
I love developing relationships more than actually buying items. Americans that go to France to purchase antiques go to the antique dealer and ask for the price. I don’t really do that, I try and get to know the people I buy from. We eat together, I meet their kids, and form a long lasting relationship.