MEA UAE Business Awards 2017

6 MEA MARKETS / UAE BUSINESS AWARDS 2017 , Apotheca Beauty is a cosmetic bridge the gap between the need for quality consumer products within theMiddle East, and the desire for premiumbrands that wish to expand their customer reach. We invited Nora Al Ramadhan to talk us through the firmand the services it offers. Best Beauty Products Provider - Middle East Apotheca was formed by three sisters, all of whom were equally fixated with finding the perfect solutions to our ever- changing beauty needs. The Founders personally utilize and sample all of the products offered by the company, and have collectively experimented with nearly every treatment and regime. Now, they are cherry- picking what they believe to be the most effective beauty solutions and sharing them with the region, as Nora outlines. “Here at Apotheca, our aim is to help edit through the market and source effective remedies, including skincare, hair-care, body, makeup and supplements, that all complement our own natural beauty. We continue to track down new products and stay in touch with the needs of Middle Eastern customers. “A few years ago, variety was seriously lacking – you could always find major retail brands, but niche and booming beauty brands were hard to come by. The goal has been to bring niche, specialty brands to consumers in the region and offer more variety than the mainstream brands that have been available for years. “We decided to represent niche beauty brands that growing exponentially, as we believe these types of brands require more support and guidance. We are one of the only distribution companies that focus exclusively on beauty. Many others are foremost massive beauty retailers, or simply retailers across multiple industries, such as clothing. We focus solely on beauty, and invest significantly on our training center, operational efficiencies, marketing campaigns and organic growth of the brand across the region and across all applicable retailers. “In addition, we also focus on specialty niche brands, as opposed to just any beauty brand, because we place heavy weight on the criteria of what we believe it takes for a brand to translate successfully into the region – that includes: quality and growth. We focus on brands that specialize in a particular category, and therefore, have supreme quality in regards to what the market has to offer. They are young and looking to lead new beauty trends.” Within the Middle East beauty market, what is in demand, but is lacking, is knowledge on the ability to educate customers, not only on what products are best, but which products are best for them. It is important that customs feel like their unique needs are being considered. As such, Apotheca implement this in all aspects of its business, from marketing, social media, and via our operational sales teams. Nora discusses the market in more detail and highlights how the firm marks itself out as unique within it. At Apotheca, we have found the landscape for entrepreneurs in the region, particularly as GCC nationals in the UAE, has always been supportive, available and accepting. The UAE is a market that is particularly full of opportunities, largely due to its diverse growing population. It is one of our largest, and most important markets that we operate in. “There is a range of challenges – such as legal processes and registrations can take a lot of time, and be difficult to complete particularly when we enter new countries. Also, visa processes while hiring is costly, and finding quality staff can be a challenge. Probably the largest challenge, though, is educating the market on the importance of skin-care being equal to that of cosmetics. “We overcome all challenges by simply being persistent and working hard to achieve our targeted goal. We constantly brainstorm new ways of working, and since we are a lean company it is easy for us to quickly implement change. Since all three of us work so closely together and communicate on UA170004