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About Bedrijf de Liefde

  • Founders: Tijn La Vos, Iris Janssen, Sanne Boersma, Wesley Hartogs, Floris Kimpel
  • Founded in: Valentijnsdag 2022, Den Bosch
  • Employees: 5
  • Money raised: 1000 euro own funds
  • Ultimate goal: Create innovative concepts that stand on their own merits without any help from people.

Communication doesn’t necessarily need words. You can also let things speak for themselves. That is the innovative way that the Brabant-based company Bedrijf de Liefde likes to get their message across. (‘Bedrijf de Liefde‘ has a double meaning in Dutch, it means ‘Make love‘ and at the same time, ‘The Love Company’, ed.)

For instance, this young company set down a one-square-meter Dixi toilet in the city center of Den Bosch (formally known as ‘s-Hertogenbosch) this summer, which they had turned into a mini-home. The inventory spoke for itself: jars in the spice rack with labels like ‘essence of very expensive housing’ and ‘ground-up worries’. It was a statement with a bit of a wink to draw attention to the problems of the overheated housing market. And it worked. The municipality of Den Bosch took active measures to find solutions. Floris Kimpel, one of the founders, tells us more about Bedrijf de Liefde in this instalment of start-up of the day.

Have you worked on any other projects?

“The first product we created is an Internet page for a film. That page provides a virtual experience that ties in with the film’s story. Via the website, you land on the computer login screen of the main character of the film. This gives the impression that you are really working on her computer. You can click on various folders and links to look up more background information about the film. Most landing pages just have a small logo and a small menu, but we wanted to take this to the next level.”

Four of the founders of ‘Bedrijf de Liefde’ © Caboom Media

“Right now, we are working on a new project: the Love Letter Generator. It is a computer that writes love letters with the help of artificial intelligence (AI). We will be at the Dutch Design Week in Eindhoven in October with this project. The computer looks old-fashioned on the outside with a large, clunky screen. We have built a modern computer inside it so that artifical intelligence (AI) can be used. You answer eight questions on the computer about your personal experiences using the equipment. Then the computer composes a love letter to you, personalized, with human-style handwriting. The letters are printed out and then hung up. This way, we want to start the conversation with passersby about the development of artificial intelligence, something that is being used more and more widely.”

What do you want to accomplish?

“We want to raise awareness and by doing that, highlight a different side of a technological or social development. We focus on the experience, we want to let people see and experience for themselves what something is really like. If you look at experiences instead of data and numbers, you find out that there are a lot more stories. This is something that companies seem to find interesting. For example, our Dixi project led us to now being in talks with major companies in the housing sector.”

What’s your innovative goal?

“We want to make projects that involve innovative technologies and at the same time get people to think about them in a conscious way. Since we don’t want to think too much in terms of pigeonholes, we don’t pin ourselves down to one type of product or technology. We want to push the boundaries and defy limitations, so this fits in well with that. We are all designer techies who keep a close eye on the latest developments. We want to use that to create experiences that are completely self-contained. The whole experience should be able to be hosted by the product itself without the need for the involvement of any people. In theory, we should be able to set out a project like that and go on vacation for a week. Although we have no intention of actually doing that, of course. When we do a project, we ask ourselves: ‘Which part needs to be explained in too much detail and how can we minimize that?’ We do believe that, in principle, you can design anything, even human behavior.”

Why is your company called ‘Bedrijf de Liefde’?

“The name came from the idea that we want to put our heart and soul into the company. So when it comes to assignments, we don’t just call them assignments, we call them our love babies: they are created when we work with clients. We think it’s very important that our identity is in line with what we make and babies are also a part of yourself.”