History is full of great pairings that made a tremendous impact: Lewis and Clark. Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Peanut butter and jelly.
Now, the adult pleasure products industry has a new pairing that’s sure to make an impact. Richard Longhurst and Neal Slateford, the minds behind leading European online retailer LoveHoney, have joined forces with Sliquid’s Dean Elliott to start up an American venture.
LoveHoney LLC, the U.S. branch of LoveHoney, was created to bring some of LoveHoney’s best products across the pond.
“When we started LoveHoney in the U.K., we had a lot of competitors, so to stand out we looked to brand products that would be exclusive to us and our site,” Slateford told AVN. “We were fortunate to partner with Tracey Cox and create a line with her that has been very successful.”
Cox, an international sex, body language and relationships expert, is known for her TV shows on sex and love as well as her range of best-selling books. In addition to partnering with LoveHoney for a line of pleasure products, she also answers questions about sex and relationship sthrough a weekly column on LoveHoney.co.uk.
But once LoveHoney introduced the Sqweel, a patent-pending revolutionary product that simulates oral sex thanks to 10 silicone tongues that spin, they knew it was time to conquer America.
“We really thought it would sell well, and we figured we owed it to the inventor to sell the Sqweel all over the world,” Slateford said.
The LoveHoney brains realized that meant setting up shop in the States, and they decided to approach someone they had worked with and knew well to help make that a reality.
“We’ve always had a really good relationship with Dean and the people at Sliquid, and it seemed like he would be a good fit for this venture,” Slateford said. “We’re really excited about this partnership.”
Elliott said he had always been impressed with the people at LoveHoney, and was ready to jump at the chance to work with them.
“From the minute I met Neal, I knew we would have a great working relationship,” he said. “And I’ve always told him how envious I was of the business relationship he and Richard shared. I would see them at shows, and they were able to bounce ideas off one another and have someone to listen to their ideas. I would come back to my four empty walls, and think about that. So when the time came that I could work with them, I was excited.”
Elliott said that in the United Kingdom, LoveHoney has become more than just a site that sells products; it has become its own brand. And that brand is strong enough to make a statement here.
“We always work to make sure that everything we brand with our name is something that’s really unique,” Slateford said.
In addition to launching the Sqweel to American audiences, LoveHoney LLC will also bring the best products from the Tracey Cox range produced in the U.K. to the States. But there are already many more product launches planned for the near future, Slateford said.
And the advantage that LoveHoney—both the U.K. and the U.S. versions—has over others is that connection with their customers, Slateford said.
“As a retailer in the U.K., we have become very close with our customers, and they give us a lot of input on what they want, what we are doing right, and what they want us to change,” Slateford said. “The Sqweel is a perfect example of that relationship, because we were able to have customers thoroughly test it before we launched it. We get a lot of their input and suggestions on just about everything we do, so that gives us an advantage over other manufacturers because we know what the people want. We know before we release anything that it is a product that will work and will be well received.”
The relationship also cements what Elliott believes is the mantra of companies like LoveHoney and Sliquid: Fun first.
“These are two companies that have always operated under the idea of having fun in everything you do and create,” he said. “That’s why this union is just going to make each of us even more successful, because we realize life’s too short to work with people who aren’t ready to have fun first.”
LoveHoney LLC is located in Dallas, Texas, for fast shipping to all parts of the U.S. and Canada. For more information, email [email protected], visit LoveHoney.com/wholesale, or call (800) 944-6639.