20 years, 35 vacuum innovations and 110 patents

CHALLENGE: Revolutionize the floor care industry with innovative vacuum designs

SERVICES: Insights, Design, Engineering, Prototyping, Sourcing, Manufacturing

SUCCESS: 35 vacuum innovations; 110 patents; largest selling handheld vacuum in the U.S. 

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Nottingham Spirk's long-lasting relationship with the Hoover and Dirt Devil brands began with a company called Royal Appliance Manufacturing Company, a Cleveland-based vacuum manufacturer founded in 1905. 

In 1983, Royal unveiled the first true handheld vacuum under the Dirt Devil brand, the first collaboration with Nottingham Spirk. Sales skyrocketed, and the relationship grew to include 35 different vacuum innovations and floor care products. To date, Nottingham Spirk has earned 110 patents for Hoover and Dirt Devil, including the revolutionary "edge wedge" vacuum head, a customer favorite due to its unique shape designed specifically for corner access. 

Royal was eventually acquired by TTI Floor Care for $105M. Today, TTI Floor Care is the parent company to 3 major recognizable vacuum brands: Hoover, Dirt Devil, and Oreck. 

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SO MANY FIRSTS FOR THE VACUUM INDUSTRY

The collaboration between Royal and Nottingham Spirk lasted more than 20 years and launched so many firsts for the world of floor care that are now ingrained consumer expectations when it comes to vacuum cleaners:

• The first handheld vacuum

• The first all-plastic upright vacuum

• The first on-board vacuum tools and attachments

• The first full line of bag-less vacuums

• The first triangular vacuum  head to allow easier corner access

• The first complete line of task-oriented, popularly priced floor care products under Dirt Devil and Hoover brands

THE POWER OF COLLABORATION

"There were two major reasons the relationship between Nottingham Spirk and TTI Floor Care (formerly Royal) was so successful," explains John Spirk, one of Nottingham Spirk's founders.

"First, the relationship lasted 20 years. There was plenty of time for the two teams to explore concepts, learn each other's businesses, get in a groove and commercialize the best ideas.

Second, the relationship was built on trust and collaboration. Both groups came together, uninhibited, to openly share ideas. And then, we executed. It was like a well-oiled machine, and it paid off."

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the original red vacuum cleaners

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MORE CASE STUDIES

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PACKH20

WATERWEAR PACK TO EASE THE BURDEN OF WATER TRANSPORTATION 

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TROY-BILT FLEX

A WHOLE NEW APPROACH TO YARD CARE

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CARDINAL HEALTH INPOWER

A CONNECTED CONSUMER MEDICAL DEVICE TO IMPROVE MEDICATION ADHERENCE RATES

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