HOW A COMPETITION MADE ME INTO A BUSINESS WOMAN

Leesa
Posted November 25, 2021 from Trinidad and Tobago

Hi. I am Aleesa and I am from Trinidad & Tobago. I am the owner and manager of FOUF Caribbean Dead Sea Products launched in January 2014. My business journey started back in 2012 when I entered a worldwide competition and won a trip for 2 to Saudi Arabia. My husband and I used the opportunity and travelled in March of 2013 which involved a brief stay in Jordan from and to Trinidad. It was on our first stop over in Jordan (to Saudi Arabia) that I purchased some FOUF products - my own products were not working for me at the time. I fell in love with them and I used the FOUF products for my duration in Saudi Arabia. On our return stop in Jordan, I purchased quite a bit of the FOUF products as I found it to be an awesome gift for family members. My family absolutely loved the products and I wanted to repurchase for continued use. It was a dilemma as the products were not readily available online except from their Jordanian website- shipping was quite costly.

I contacted the company directly to find out how else I can purchase the FOUF products. The option presented to me was to be a distributor for the brand. At the time, I had absolutely no money to invest in such a venture and I did not have much of a business background. After much communication with the company and with the help of one of my siblings, I was able to come up with a reasonable amount of money to make my first purchase order. My business has grown a great deal since then till now despite the Covid-19 challenges. From 20 items, I now carry 37 items.

I am still managing the entire operations of my business alone as I don't have the additional funds for added help. From time to time, I pay a professional social media manager and he has been a great support for my business many times without payment. I also have for the last 2 years, a brand ambassador to help with product marketing.

This business/brand has real potential for growth as I am working on a proper e-commerce site to facilitate online purchase from within the Caribbean.

This story was submitted in response to The Real Me.

Comments 3

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Rahmana Karuna
Nov 25
Nov 25

Welcome to World Pulse Leesa! what a wonderful and inspiring story.
Entrepreneurship is not easy.
so many questions in my mind as i read your story.
are your products in your home? or a storefront?
they didn't teach us business skills in primary school did they.

Leesa
Nov 25
Nov 25

Hi Rahmana. The products are available at several retail outlets including 2 local online retail stores. Also, there are several spas that use the products for various services such as facials, manicures, pedicures and body treatments. The Covid-19 pandemic impacted on the Spa services as my country was on a lockdown for a period of time. During my school years, in primary school here, we never did business skills and at secondary level, it was only done if business subjects were selected. Now, students have a bit more opportunities to business courses.

rebecca.tang
Nov 28
Nov 28

Thank you for sharing. Your story is inspiring. Opportunities appears suddenly in our lifetime and it may change our life.
Wish you every success of your business! When you have some spare bandwidth, please also offer opportunities to other who needs your help or anyone you can help.
May Almighty God bless you and your family!