keifer keifer keifer…
yes, people do this, there are several cases of IDers breaking off and starting their own non consultant companies.
Coffee Equipment Company - bought out by Starbucks about a year ago?
“The Clover seems to have an almost cult-like following. What I like most about this story is the history and back story of the Coffee Equipment Company. The company was started by Zander Nosler, a former product designer at IDEO, with the purpose of perfecting the single-brew coffee machine, based on research he did designing a commercial machine while at IDEO.” - taken from Clover Innovates the Coffee Maker - Konigi
image from wired
"The Orbit Baby Story
Over 12 years ago in the Product Design department at Stanford, Bryan White and Joseph Hei were pulling an all-nighter to meet a design project deadline and talked about starting their own company. They knew they wanted to build products that worked smarter, looked better, and addressed a challenging problem space. While that project is long since forgotten, the original dream and the vision from that night endures, and Orbit Baby is the result.
In the intervening years since that night, Joseph and Bryan each got married, started families and embarked on careers, gaining experience in design, engineering and manufacturing. Most recently they found themselves working together at IDEO, a celebrated design firm in Palo Alto, California. When Bryan and Joseph ended up leaving IDEO at around the same time, they took advantage of a great opportunity to start something together." - taken from _Orbit Baby Modular Stroller System- 03.23.08_notcot.com
-recently/brilliantly featured on the office
One from my alma-mater Craig Vetter - after designing the Triump Hurricane
and some other cool stuff, Craig started a company making fairings for motorcycles Vetter Fairings
plenty more stories like this, but I’m HOPING you’ll get the drift with out too much more info this time.