A Family History
Sam Huisman, my late Grandfather, emigrated from The Netherlands to Argentina in 1920, when he was only 19 years old, just after the First World War ended. His father had worked for the reputable and well-known European Hide Trading Corporation during the 1900s. In 1933, after gaining experience during his first years in Argentina, Sam decided to found S.Huisman & Co. Hides & Skins, specializing in the business of selecting, salting and grading raw bovine hides for the European shoe and leather markets. In 1947, his sons, David and Rolly, joined the Company’s young team, learning the “métier” through their own experience.
Ten years later, Dave and Rolly—my father and uncle respectively—founded Daromy S.A., branching out of the bovine market and into that of wool and sheepskin. They promptly reached and were recognized as the top leading exporters of raw sheepskin from Argentina to the world for the next 25 years, with exports totaling 1,000,000 tons of hides per year.
During the 1970’s, Argentina’s government imposed an Add-on Value policy, limiting the export of raw sheepskins. Dave & Rolly then decided to venture into the totally unknown-to-them sheepskin tanning business, working hard to continue their leading reputation. An old tannery was purchased in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, where the now completely processed sheepskins were manufactured into finished goods. These included sheepskin car seat covers, garments and slippers—now exported to the German and the newly discovered US market. My older brother Rick then came into the picture, adding his young will to learn and together with my American-born cousin Eric, explored the technical field of leather tanning.
I was 18 years old when I started my “family” career by sweeping the tannery’s chemical warehouse floors. Within a short time period, I found myself managing 60 employees and a daily production of 1,000 tanned sheepskins. Following in my Grandpa’s adventurous steps, after eightyears of tannery experience, I decided to emigrate from Argentina to the US, developing and expanding our customer base to the largest market in the world. Here I experienced the wholesale import-and-distribution sector of the sheepskin market in the US from 1986 through 1999. During these years, I also experienced retail business through joint ventures in the sheepskin seat cover trade, managing seven retail stores in four Mid-Western states. I went on to service department store catalog sales, to finally end up once again in the import-distribution end of the market.
Today, after more than 42 years of experience in the sheepskin-cowhide business, I am proud to lead the Sunshine Cowhides Worldwide organization, together with my wife Cristina, my nephew Andy, and our highly trained teams in our different locations. From the raw salted hides of then, to the beautiful shiny hair-on finished rugs of today, I passionately enjoy selecting each one of our hides for you, our valued customer! Today we offer a balanced combination of only the best product available, exceptionally competitive prices, and a unique and personalized customer service.
Please enjoy our product as much as we enjoy selecting and delivering it to you. Every hide that ships from our 9,000 square foot source-and-grading warehouse in Brazil, to our 8,000 sqft. warehouse in Miami, brings with it, almost a century of family history in the trading of our loved hides and skins.