Healthy light, happy people
Our aim is for people, not just our customers, or our own team, but the whole world - we like to think big - to increase their vitality, be more energetic and therefore happier.Meet the team
Oscar Meijer and Merijn Wegdam met at university. Oscar studied Civil Engineering, Merijn Industrial Design. In 2001 Merijn was talking about his 'book of ideas' and Oscar wanted to know what his best idea was. Merijn remembered the time that he fell asleep with a facial tanner above his bed. You may well wonder why he didn't just sit in front of the tanner, but Merijn's answer to that is as clear as it brief: a waste of time. Sounds plausible. Anyway, he woke up decidedly red-faced. In the shower, his skin urgently needed cooling, the idea of Sunshower sprung to mind: combine sunbathing with showering. Two birds with one stone. Relax and look good at the same time.
Oscar liked the idea. The two men took part in a business-plan competition and won first prize: office space at the TU in Delft and €1,500. They spent this money on their first, but by no means last company party and a sunbed, which they used for their prototype.
Two years later, in 2003, another milestone: the establishment of Sunshower BV and KEMA-KEUR certification. Sunshower was officially approved. The first one went to CenterParcs. The student friends single-handedly installed the first Sunshowers in a tropical swimming pool - at night, so as not to inconvenience the guests during the day.
Healthy & Happy
People who feel good about themselves because they take good care of their body and therefore their mind too, that is our motivation.
By 2006 more and more bathroom stores were selling Sunshower. Meanwhile, the two friends had developed a surface-mounted model for people wanting to install a Sunshower in their existing bathroom. With these plans, the duo again won first prize at Business-Boost, a sum of € 50,000. This was reason enough for another party, of course, and the rest of the money went towards the development and production of this corner model.
And then it was 2007. The tanning industry was in dire straits after evidence that too much sunlight is harmful. This news motivates the men to examine the effect of a daily low dose of sunlight, together with dermatologists. Their former student friends acted as test subjects. Sure enough, the research revealed that with regular use of Sunshower, the vitamin D level almost doubles in winter, without harming the skin. This laid the foundation for a healthy alternative.
In the years that followed, they found an investor, Michael Tulp (Managing Director since 2016), they added infrared to their products and it became clear that a low dose of UV-B light not only benefits the vitamin D level, but is also suitable for treating chronic skin conditions. This was made official with the establishment of its medical sister company, Dermasun Medical, in 2010.
A dream has come true. Sunshower is flourishing. With good reason. Showering has become a well-being experience. In addition, more and more people understand the importance of the positive effects of safe sunlight.
The fact that the Sunshower is flourishing does not mean that Merijn, Oscar and Michael have become complacent. There are still plenty more dreams to realise. They not only want to be the largest in the Netherlands and the Benelux, for example, they also plan to conquer Germany, Scandinavia and the rest of the world. Moreover, they firmly believe that you're never too old to learn so they continue to further develop their products.
"Happy people", that's what Sunshower is all about. A smile on the faces of suppliers and customers, but also on the faces of the enthusiastic 45-strong team. And they seem to have succeeded there too. Lunchtime in the office kitchen is quite a social event. It could be sausage rolls and toasties all round one day and a fried egg the next, and sometimes someone will even cook a whole meal. And the company parties, be that sailing through the Amsterdam canals on their sloop or anywhere else, remain a permanent fixture.
Innovative & inspiring
Continuing to develop ourselves, thinking out of the box and following our own plan, even if that means that we having to row against the current, that's what it's all about.