A Wilmington-based company is crashing further into the sleep industry with a line of products to help people get shut eye.
Marpac LLC, a company that makes and sells sleep products, has been manufacturing white noise machines since the 1960s and continues those same operations – with modern designs – at its headquarters on Capital Drive in Wilmington, said Marpac Co-CEO Jimmy Sloan.
The company employees more than 50 people, the majority of whom are at the Wilmington site, Sloan said.
Marpac manufactures most of its white noise sound machines using hand-and-tool assembly. More than a dozen workers assemble the machines and test them on-site, Sloan said.
Parts come from all over the world to be assembled, packaged and shipped from Marpac’s Wilmington headquarters, Sloan said.
The company has been in the Wilmington area since 1972 and has moved around a bit, but the company found its current home inside a roughly 27,000-square-foot space on Capital Drive, which along with assembly, holds the company’s offices and warehouse distribution space.
Marpac Co-CEO Gordon Wallace said Marpac came to be as a sound machine company.
“We created the category back in the 1960s,” said Co-CEO Gordon Wallace. “Jim Buckwalter, who’s the founder of Marpac – a person that moved the company to Wilmington in the first place – he invented the first electromechanical white noise machine, so in essence, created the category of sound machines. And Marpac has been a key player in sound machines ever since,” Wallace said.
The company’s Wilmington production includes the Marpac Dohm Classic and Marpac Dohm. These products have fans inside an enclosed adjustable dome-shaped shell, that produces a calming sound for sleep.
Co-workers and friends, Sloan and Wallace knew each other from graduate school and working in the Charlotte banking world years before joining forces to purchase Marpac in 2010.
The two are now taking the company to the next level in expanding its line of products.
Marpac early last year acquired Yogabed, an online mattress company, Wallace said. The company is now shipping Yogabed mattresses and some bedding accessories globally.
And the company aims to expand its “tools-for-sleep” business model with an aroma diffuser to make the bedroom “more conducive from an olfactory perspective to relax and sleep,” Wallace said.
“The real focus in all of this really is the sleep environment,” Sloan said.
The company also has plans to increase its international growth, particularly in Europe, Sloan said.
“We like to say we help people get the sleep they deserve, because we know broader impacts of not getting a good night’s sleep affect everything we do. So we’re trying to do our fair share,” Sloan said.
For more about Marpac's product line, click here