A Family History
Sam Huisman, my late Grandfather, emigrated from Holland to Argentina in 1920, when he was only 19 years old, just after the First World War ended. His father had worked for a reputable and well known European Hide Trading Corporation during the 1900s. In 1933, after some representation experiences during the first years in Argentina, he decided to found S.Huisman & Co. –Hides & Skins- in the business of selecting, salting and grading raw dry bovine hides for the shoe and leather European markets. In 1947, his sons, David & Rolly, both became part of the Company’s young team, learning the “métier” through their own experience. Later, in 1957, Dave & Rolly (my Father and Uncle, respectively) founded Daromy S.A., branching out of the bovine market by establishing the same kind of Export raw skin business as Sam, but now in the Wool and Sheepskin areas.

They promptly reached and were recognized as the top leader Exporters of Raw Sheepskin from Argentina to the world, for the next 25 years, totalizing exports for some 1,000,000 Tons of hides per year. During the 1970’s, Argentina’s Government imposed an Add-on Value policy, limiting exports of raw sheepskins. Dave & Rolly then decided to experience into the totally unknown to them sheepskin tanning business in order to keep on working hard at their leading exports reputation.

The now totally processed sheepskins were transformed into finished goods through manufacturing. An old tannery was purchased in the outskirts of Buenos Aires. Finished products included Sheepskin Car Seat Covers, Garments and Slippers, exported now to the German and the newly discovered US market.

My older brother, Rick, then came into the picture adding his young will to learn, exploring the technical field of the tanning process together with my American born cousin, Eric. I was 18 years old when I started my “family” career by sweeping the tannery’s chemical warehouse area. In a short time period I found myself managing 60 employees and a production of 1000 tanned sheepskins a day.

Una tradición familiar

Following my Grandpa´s adventure steps, after 8 years of tannery experience, I decided to emigrate from Argentina to the US, in order to develop and expand our customer base, in the biggest market in the world. I experienced the Import-Wholesale and Distribution area of the sheepskin market in the US from 1986 through 1999.

Along these years I also passed through the Retail Business through joint ventures in the Sheepskin Seatcover end, managing 7 retail stores in 4 different Mid-Western states. Then serviced Dept Store catalog sales, to finally end up once again in the Import-Distribution end of the Market. Decided then to go back to my roots and started my own Hair On Cowhide Rug business from my Miami home’s living room. Today, after more than ten years in the wholesale hair on cowhide business, I am proud to lead and be part of the South American Hides and Leather, Inc. team, based in Miami, Florida. From the raw salted hides then, to the beautiful shiny hair on finished rugs today, I passionly enjoy selecting each one of our hides for you, our valued customer! Today we offer a balanced combination of only the best product available, extremely competitive prices, and a customer oriented unique personalized service.

- Guillermo “Bill” Huisman CEO for South American Hides and Leather, Inc.