Within the past few years, the advancement technology – everything from smartphones to “green” buildings and even self-driving cars – has permeated every facet of our society. Needless to say, the adult novelty industry is rapidly incorporating technology as well, with the rise of adult streaming sites and even virtual reality. Toon Timmermans, co-founder and CEO of Dutch startup KiirooKiiroo, is on the cutting edge of the new technology boom. I recently chatted with him about Kiiroo and the state of the adult novelty industry today.
C.J. Asher – Thanks for the interview, Toon, Why do you start out by telling us about yourself…
Toon Timmermans – I am a Dutch entrepreneur, born and bred, in the south of the Netherlands. I studied Sports Marketing at Fontys University of Applied Science in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, and moved on to pursue a career in the sports industry for many years before we came up with the idea for Kiiroo.
C.J. Asher – Tell me about Kiiroo, what types of products you sell, its history, and so forth.
Toon Timmermans – Kiiroo is a Dutch startup, a sex tech company specializing in teledildonics. When we first started, we had a crowd-funded campaign on Indigogo, and from there Kiiroo was born. We initially catered to the long-distance lovers, but soon after we started connecting the devices to content, Virtual Reality, games and webcam sites. Since Kiiroo’s inception in 2013, we have expanded significantly and partnered with a variety of different companies from many facets of the adult and technology industry.
Currently, on the market we have the Onyx that is an automatic male masturbator, lined with Fleshlight SuperSkin, and for females, we have the Pearl, a touch sensitive vibrator. The devices are both Bluetooth enabled, and using the Kiiroo platform the devices can connect to one another via the Internet. The devices are able to connect male-to-male, female-male, female-female and one-to-many as well as the ability to connect to content, Virtual Reality, games, and webcam.
C.J. Asher – What first made you decide to work in the adult novelty industry?
Toon Timmermans – I was really intrigued by the idea of bringing people together, no matter the distance. So, when we got the idea to create Kiiroo, the adult novelty industry came hand-in-hand with that, it sort of just fell in my lap. I must say though, I’m glad it did.
C.J. Asher – How has working in your industry impacted your personal and professional life? Do family and friends know what you do and are they supportive of it?
Toon Timmermans – Working in the industry has truly been a blessing for me, both personally and professionally. My friends and family have been very supportive of me since we started Kiiroo, and at this stage, especially with all of the publicity Kiiroo gets, it would be hard to hide what I do! But, I must say, my support system both at work and at home has been amazing, and I am so glad that everyone is pleased with this step I’ve taken, and the places we have brought Kiiroo since the beginning.
C.J. Asher – What’s the most stressful part of your job?
Toon Timmermans – Doing a job you love is not stressful! But seriously, everyone has his or her ups and downs, regardless of what you do. I am just happy that all my hard work and stresses have blossomed into something that I am very proud of!
C.J. Asher – What’s your best-selling product, and what makes it so popular?
Toon Timmermans – Currently, our best-selling product is the Onyx (the male device). This is partly due to the fact that there are so many different things you can do with it. Not only can you connect to our female device; Pearl, you can also connect to other Onyx’s. Users of Kiiroo devices can also connect to content, webcam and Virtual Reality, thus why they are so popular. By putting on your VR headset and your Kiiroo Onyx, you are so immersed in the sex scenes that it truly becomes believable. Come March, our new best-selling product will be launched! 😉
C.J. Asher – Who is your typical client base?
Toon Timmermans – We have a wide variety of clientele, ranging from couples in long-distance relationships, to singles. It is hard to pinpoint who our typical client base is at the moment. Although, I must say that our clientele are generally people who love to interact online and those who want to experience adult content in a new way.
C.J. Asher – How do you feel that novelty items help couples to enhance their sexual activity and their relationships?
Toon Timmermans – Novelty items give people an outlet to explore their sexual beings, and who they are. Whether it is solo play or with their partners, novelty items are giving couples a reason to explore in the bedroom. By adding teledildonics to a relationship, couples are able to take their boring Skype calls to an exiting new intimate place. Heightening pleasure for one person is not as fun as doing it with your partner, so get the most out of these experiences together. A couple that communicates and plays together – online or offline – stays together.
C.J. Asher – Where can customers go to purchase your products?
Toon Timmermans – There are a variety of places customers can go to purchase our products. Kiiroo and Fleshlight are our main stores, but we have a number of other wholesalers and retailers worldwide who sell our products.
C.J. Asher – What’s the hottest trend in adult novelty products right now?
Toon Timmermans – The hottest trend in in adult novelty products right now would definitely have to be the fact that we can connect interactive novelty devices to Virtual Reality content.
C.J. Asher – What sets your company apart from other companies in the adult novelty market?
Toon Timmermans – In my opinion, it would have to be the fact that we are so technology oriented. We created the technology that simulates intercourse online that has the ability to connect toys to content, Virtual Reality, webcam, games… The Kiiroo devices bring users to a whole new level.
C.J. Asher – What are your favorite industry-related events?
Toon Timmermans – My favorite industry-related events are: XBIZ, AVN, ANME, The Phoenix Forum, EroFame, and various events in Amsterdam and in Prague. Because we combine two industries- novelty and content we need to attend a variety of shows. As I’m sure you can imagine, I have a very busy event schedule!
C.J. Asher – What new and exciting products do you have coming out in the near future?
Toon Timmermans – 2017 is looking bright for us, in addition to the Onyx2 and the Pearl2, we have a few new flagships sailing and so you will have to keep a very, very close eye on us. The year will start with a bang! Literally.
C.J. Asher – Tell me some of the compliments you’ve received from your customers.
Toon Timmermans – Generally, customers are very happy with the two-way interactions between the toys, and the fact that you can connect to content and now webcam girls.
A few of the reviews:
“The Onyx is a great product, the feel is incredible.”
“The only thing that I could think of that would be better than the onyx is to actually make love to the person for real.”
“When I 1st got the Onyx & looked at the Kiiroo site, I saw the prices & thought it might be too high in price, but after the testing it is well worth the money.”
C.J. Asher – What nominations and awards have you received?
Toon Timmermans – XBIZ 2015 Kiiroo won ‘New Pleasure Product Company of the Year’. Adult Entertainment Virtual Convention (AEVC) 2015 Kiiroo won ‘Best Pleasure product Company of the Year’ alongside Fleshlight. Kiiroo won “Best Couple Play” at Dusk TV Porna Awards 2016. At YNOT Awards 2016, Kiiroo won ‘Innovative Product.’ At the Latin American Adult Business Awards (LAL-Expo) 2016, Kiiroo won “Innovative Adult Product of the Year.” At OnlyTaboos 2015, Kiiroo won four awards: ‘Most Innovative Sex Toy’, ‘Most Innovative Adult Brand’, ‘Best Sex Toy for Men’ & ‘Best Sex Toy for Couples’. Last but not least, we are runner up in the category ‘Best Sex Toy for Women.’ At 2016 Live Cam Awards Kiiroo won ‘Best Interactive Pleasure Product’
C.J. Asher – What social media sites can your customers follow you at? Please provide links!
Toon Timmermans – Social media is a big thing for us here. We aim to be as socially approachable as possible. Our most frequently used social media platform is Twitter. You can find us at Kiiroo.com, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.