Cathy Siah, the Managing Director of Viederm Marketing Sdn Bhd believes that opportunities abound and we need to be ready for them. Together with Taevin Teh, the founder of Vie Signature, they created a superior and trustworthy beauty brand which gives ‘vie’ (life in French) to skin and people around them. The perfect partners speak to Top 10 of Malaysia on how they came together to form a successful beauty care empire.
The parents of Cathy Siah and Taevin Teh hoped for them to become professionals. “When I told my parents that I wanted to be a beautician, it didn’t register well with them as they thought that being a beautician means you are only a skilled worker,” says Cathy who entered the industry after she got married. “I went on to train as a beautician and started a company distributing beauty products. The business grew but I wasn’t contented. I met Taevin about 5 years ago and the perfect partnership was formed.”
“Taevin is a sensitive and compassionate gentleman who is always interested in doing the best,” says Cathy. “I chanced upon some friends who were miserable because of their bad skin complexion. I knew how this could affect a person’s confidence and pride so I started doing lots of research on skin and getting in touch with specialists in the industry. It was a few years later that I met Cathy and we formed Vie Signature,” recalls Taevin.
Cathy already had lots of experience in the beauty industry and she admires Taevin’s passion and desire to create a beauty brand. “I toiled for 3 years in the research and development of Vie Signature and my first successful test was done on Cathy. Initially, Cathy’s skin condition was at a very bad stage. She had been using all kinds of unsuitable products and was on doctor’s prescription drugs for 2 years. When she tried my formulas, her skin’s condition started slowly improving and compliments started pouring in,” says Taevin. This boosted their confidence and belief that their brand could make a positive impact in the market.
Within 5 years, Vie Signature has grown by leaps and bounds in Malaysia and Singapore. “Every business has its challenges. For Vie Signature, it is the presence of online competitors. Ensuring the authenticity of brand and products is essential,” says Taevin. “We are most concerned for customers who buy miscellaneous unknown brands as the origin of the product is questionable. It is always best to understand a brand and try out its sample before purchasing,” says Cathy.
On her leadership style, Cathy says that she has a very open and flexible approach for her staff. “They can work from anywhere and anytime as long as they are able to get results that they are happy with because I understand the needs and wants of women.” “Although I can be strict during trainings, I regard them as family members and would desire the best for them. I treasure them immensely because without them, the brand would not be where it is today.” Taevin, on the other hand, always takes care of everyone and everything.
The gorgeous Cathy is the face of the brand and she markets the products while Taevin, the brain, creates the products and rolls out the business plans. As of now, Vie Signature has 3 product ranges: the Re-Everthing Series which helps to detoxify skin; the 7 Days Pure Skin Program that provides instant rejuvenation to skin; and the Color and Cover Age Series which combats ageing. All Vie Signature products have Swiss glacier water in them as it is choke-filled with minerals in itself and is able to penetrate deep into the epidermis to refresh skin.
“We plan to open La Vie Signature outlets and an academy in 2018. In 5 years’ time, we wish to see Vie Signature make its presence in South East Asia and be the go-to professional beauty brand,” say Cathy and Taevin. Their advice for budding entrepreneurs is that one needs to have immense passion and interest in the chosen industry and the perseverance to soldier on because success does not come overnight.