Hailing from Ipoh, Perak, the Founder and CEO of Ronan Amin Worldwide Sdn Bhd better known as JenamaSendiri.com, did not come from a wealthy family. Growing up with rice and soy sauce as his staple food, the humble man admits that he is still fond of it. Speaking to Top 10 of Malaysia, Dr Amin Abdullah talks about company practices, the vision for JenamaSendiri.com and what keeps him going!
“As a kid, I wanted to own my own business but when I told my late dad that, he said, ‘Just work with the government, even as a despatch and I would be more than happy’. I will never forget that,” reminisces Dr Amin Abdullah. “Although we were poor, my dad always trusted in education. It changed me and I promised never to be poor again,” he adds.
As founder of the number one cosmetics manufacturer in Malaysia, Dr Amin elaborates on what contributes to JenamaSendiri.com’s success. “The product is unbeatable as I positioned it to be very upmarket. A statistic by the New York Times shows that 30% of Malaysians are really rich, so that 30% is my market! The Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club has a long waiting list even with a USD57,000 membership fee. Similarly, I focus on my target market and success follows.”
Aside from providing packaging and marketing services for clients from the cosmetic, skin care and supplements industries, there are other offerings. “We offer value-added services such as a dedicated marketing strategy because without proper marketing, you cannot go anywhere.”
In fact, the concept is actually adapted. “No one is exclusive to any ideas. We adapted the concept from the European cosmetics industry.” This does not mean that there are no competitors. “Competition is the best form of motivation to become better. It keeps me hungry. It keeps me going,” says Dr Amin.
When asked on how JenamaSendiri.com sustains success, he stresses on cash flow management. “Don’t take for granted the money that’s coming in, and balance it with money spent. As Warren Buffet puts it, ‘Cash or available credit is like oxygen’. You don’t notice it 99.9 percent of the time, but when absent, it’s the only thing you notice.”
JenamaSendiri.com’s milestone is being the number one cosmetic manufacturer in Malaysia with 80% domestic and 20% international market share but it was no walk in the park. “It’s difficult to be the top being a Malaysian brand as the mentality of people in Asia and the media does have a negative bias towards local companies,” laments Dr Amin. Nevertheless, JenamaSendiri.com plans to enter the halal markets in China and other Asian countries by 2017. Dr Amin has something else to be proud of – “100% of our top managers are women!”
At JenamaSendiri.com, clients can purchase packages comprising product packaging, marketing strategies and more. “JenamaSendiri.com is expensive and clients buying from us know they are buying a prestige product,” says Dr Amin.
Furthermore, he does not take personal care lightly. His appearance says it all as he elaborates on the challenges faced. “The greatest challenge is to always be pretty and have zero pimples as pimples are a taboo in the cosmetics industry.”
When asked of his expectations for the company in future, Dr Amin shares that Ronan Amin Worldwide plans to conduct an initial public offering on the Malaysian Stock Exchange in 2017. “We’d like to improve corporate management and allow Malaysian investors to join in our growth.” Furthermore, Dr Amin plans to set up a joint venture with a government-linked company in a bid to expand the company’s reach into China.
Dr Amin’s friendly presence is felt as he describes his leadership style. “I do not have staff but I have a team. At work, they wear whatever makes them comfortable. I don’t care what they wear, I care about their performance.” He adds that humility is the key. “They can Whatsapp, text, or call me and propose ideas. I’d rather have 100 minds working than just one, and that is how JenamaSendiri.Com has grown.” Dr Amin also elaborates on what motivates him. “I have a big responsibility towards my team as their income is from this company, so failure is not an option. I also don’t give up easily.”
Additionally, his sentimentality is evident. “Every year on my mother’s birthday, I ask if there is anything she’d like, and she’ll present me with a long wish list. One day, she said she doesn’t know what to ask for as she has received everything from me. That is the greatest achievement in my life.”
As for budding entrepreneurs, he has some unconventional advice. “Are you ready to struggle with work-life balance? Are you ready for competitors? Are you ready to sleep like a baby and wake up every two hours and cry? If yes, start your business ASAP!”