The Vermund story can be traced right back to 1935, when the young Vermund Larsen started manufacturing steel products. With two good hands, plenty of ideas and a good helping of optimism, he got started on making his first chair out of steel rods and fibreglass.
In many ways, Vermund Larsen was a creative and productive man, who got great pleasure out of making something. During those early years, Vermund Larsen was incredibly industrious, and spent days and nights in his workshop.
"I didn't think there were enough hours in the day. I sweated and I forged, and I hardly ever seemed to sleep: but I felt that I was on the right track. I was a manufacturer, with myself as boss and the sole employee."
Vermund Larsen's industrious personality quickly gave him enough wind in his sails to hire employees and increase production. He took care of his staff, who were never just a number in a production line. He recognised their abilities and was only too aware that you do not build up a company alone, but with the right people by your side. In many ways, he was ahead of his time; he was a skilled and considerate business manager, who built up a good working environment and made the time to talk to people - and not just about work. "As long as a boss treats his employees well, it is nice to be the boss," was one of Vermund's management principles.
He created many chairs, which were sold during the 1950s and '60s in stores like Illum in Copenhagen. Vermund Larsen threw many ideas around regarding new creations and improvements, but the central theme was always that you
The philosophy has long since proved it doesn't go out of date: without compromise, his company has retained its focus on producing quality chairs with anatomically correct backs and seats. The company was also responsible for the world's first office chair with automatic height adjustment using the gas cartridge system back in 1962, and the ergonomically-shaped seat and back. This paved the way worldwide. Moreover, VELA was the only Scandinavian producer of this type of chair for the next 15 years. Since then, the company has developed a wide range of specialist and rehabilitation chairs through the years.
Vermund died in 1970, and today the company is owned by his twin sons, Stig and Gorm Larsen.
"When I began, I had it in my head that being a manufacturer was something you would only wish upon your enemies. And it's true that it's difficult - there's a lot to hold together. But I love to invent things and make something - and if you can sell the product, that's nice too!" - Vermund Larsen, 1960