As the erotic market continues to grow, it is reaching new audiences with new expectations. Many customers don’t want “run of the mill” products anymore – what they want are products that feel more individual, products that truly match their personal style. Up-and-coming Dutch company Ylva & Dite has set out to give that audience what they want, offering a large selection of dildos that vary in colour, size, and style. And trade members can even get bespoke versions, manufactured in small quantities to their very specifications. In our interview, the managing directors Danny Jacobs (Sales Executive) and Roy Jacobs (Research & Development) introduce the company and explain the advantages of self-controlled production.
Your newly founded company is called Ylva & Dite, which is quite an unusual name. Does it have a meaning and why did you choose that name? Danny Jacobs: Our name is a combination of two words which we consider to be in beautiful harmony when it comes to erotics. Ylva has its origin in Scandinavia. The word is used to describe a wolf. For us, the word Ylva stands for fearlessness, wildness, the animal of pleasure. Dite is the short version of Aphrodite. Aphrodite is a well known Greek goddess. In mythology, she represents sexuality and love. A perfect fit for our brand. Feel sexy and unleash your inner beast.
When you look at our logo, it includes a combination of both, the wolf and the representation of love. Are you able to see it?
What can you tell us about the team behind the company? Were you involved in the erotic industry before Ylva & Dite? Danny: The team of Ylva & Dite consists out of six people, each with their own field of expertise. Everyone has their own focus. This means that one person can specialise on the marketing, and another person can focus on development, logistics, design etc.
While this is our first experience with the erotic industry, we are a company which has over 40 years of experience in the retailing business. It just that we haven’t been in touch with the erotic industry before. Our retail experience comes from the wellness industry, that used to be our core business. Now the company is going through a diversification process. Hopefully, the erotic industry will treat us well.
You have been fine-tuning your concept for over a year before launching Ylva & Dite. Why did you decide to enter the market right now? Roy Jacobs: This is true, we believe that it’s hopeless to enter this market if your products are similar to existing ones. If you want to be seen, you need two things: good products and a good story.
To make sure our products meet our standards, we needed to develop, test, develop, test, develop, test. It takes time to fine-tune a product, especially when it’s meant for the intimate parts of men and women. We only launched the products when everything was perfectly aligned and 100% to our satisfaction.
Your slogan is “Unleash your inner beast.” What kind of products are you offering that let your customers free their animalistic side? Could you give us a short introduction to your portfolio? Danny: The common denominator of all our products is that they are from Holland, designed and developed. This means you can enjoy Dutch quality. Currently, our product range consists purely of dildos, thirteen in total. The main difference can be found in the product width. We offer over forty colours per model. This way, everyone can choose the model and colour that suits them best.
It’s up to the consumer to unleash their animalistic side, we just offer the right tools in the right colour, the right quality, at the right time.
There are already a lot of dildos on the market. Why should retailers include your products in their assortment? Roy: When you look at our product range, you can see that we are able to provide colours which are currently not available anywhere else on the market. If you want to offer products which make your shop unique, then Ylva & Dite is the perfect partner for you.
For retailers, the business part is very important when it comes to making the decision to add products to their assortment. As the manufacturer of these products, we are able to provide smartly priced products with a beautiful margin for the retailers.
Apart from this, we are able to customise our products and give the retailer a unique colour selected, or even a shape specially developed for them. We are able to do this even in smaller quantities. Being a professional manufacturer, we are a great partner who can produce quickly, accurately, bespokely – and we are located in Europe.
Ylva & Dite already offers a considerable selection of designs. What can you tell us about the design process? What’s most important for you in this process? Roy: A lot of thought goes into the designs. For us, it matters a lot how the product is shaped or curved, what length and diameter it has. The products need to look sexy and attractive. You should feel a sense of joy by just looking at the product.
Next to this, the most important thing is the feeling and sensation the product provides. These thoughts guide us in our design process. The experience needs to be ‘one of a kind’. If you are the owner of two Ylva & Dite dildos, they should feel totally different from each other.
The toys of Ylva & Dite are handmade in Holland. Why did you decide against manufacturing abroad? Which advantages are there to manufacturing the toys yourself? Roy: The most important reason for this decision is to have the guarantee that everything about the product is 100% safe. We are able to check all raw materials and are fully involved in the production process. We see to it with our own eyes that these products are bodysafe and clean.
Apart from this, that strategy gives us a great degree of flexibility and control regarding the specifications and quantities of products. We are able to provide small amounts of customised products to the retailers.
Do you feel that handmade products like yours are counter movement to mass production? Danny: When you say counter movement, it sounds as though we want to attack mass production. We are okay with mass production but we believe that there still is a place for handmade products in this market. We provide handmade products in larger amounts, this is something only we are able to provide to the market.
We also see a lot of growth in the market; the market has reached a level of maturity where demand for more unique products is growing. We are in a perfect position to supply the market with these unique products.
How would you describe your target audience? Danny: “Broad” would be the best word to describe our target audience. We want to provide everyone with the erotic toy of their choice. This explains the colours. One person may have a preference for pink while another person prefers a metallic blue. We are able to meet all of their wishes.
You are also offering to create custom dildos made to your client’s specifications. What exactly can your clients customise? Roy: Clients are able to choose their own exclusive colour, even in small amounts. This is a modification we are able to make quite easily. The models themselves can be customised as well, but this obviously has a bigger impact so it requires closer cooperation with the client.
If a retailer/client asks for a dildo model that does not exist at the time, we can develop this product, give it the right colour, package it, and make it ‘store’ ready.
Is there a minimum order quantity for custom-made dildos? Danny: If you want your own colour, the minimum amount is 28 dildos of one model. If you want to develop and design your very own product, the amount will be larger. We establish these minimum quantities together with our clients and then, we create a beautiful product for them.
What are your plans for marketing your products? Will they only ever be available through your online shop or will you offer them to other resellers or even wholesalers and distributors? Danny: Our products are available through our own webshop which is supported by online marketing tools. Apart from that, we believe that more exposure will give us the boost we need as a Dutch producer.
With this in mind, we want to exhibit our products to various resellers. And to reach the resellers, we want to make use of wholesalers and distributors. They are all more than welcome to contact us at ylva-dite.com.
What are you looking for in potential business partners? Danny: We are looking for partners who are experienced players in the business and see the fun of it all. We are looking for partners who are willing to go for a long-term relationship. We are more than willing to work hard to meet our partners’ needs and wants. If the people ask for a different model or a specific colour, we will provide it for them.
Mainly, we are looking for relationships that are long-term and heavy on collaboration. It is secondary if our partners have a webshop or physical stores, if they are wholesalers, retailers or distributors.
Where do you see Ylva & Dite one year from now? Roy: One year is a short time but currently, we are busy with developing more product lines. As we speak, new cockrings and buttplugs are being developed, soon to go into stock. Next, we will turn towards vibrators, but those are still in the designing fase.
Eventually, we want to be the Dutch manufacturer for all sex toys. We want to be colourful and have a product line that covers a wide range.