Sunday, 23 December 2007

Natasya: All in the Family
Management style
Natasya is founded by Datin Hajjah Muniro Kassim, who had her share of challenges in business ventures and marketing her herbal-based cosmetic brand.
Perwanza Enterprise (M) Sdn Bhd, a family firm in mind, body and soul, was established in 2002 by its CEO, Datuk Suhaimy Othman, who is the husband to the founder. Its MD is Mohd Irwan Iryani Suhaimy, the son to the founder, its ED is Nursuhaila Eliani Suhaimy, daughter and in-house model (left pic) and its GM is Jasny Othman, brother to the CEO.
Its management style is conventional, where the CEO controls most decision making with a clear chain of command.
The top management holds meetings with state managers (stockists) in the peninsula once a month and twice a year for those from Sabah and Sarawak
It employs 60 workers in its manufacturing plant in Parit Buntar and around 20-30 in its packaging and administration unit at the HQ in Damansara Damai.

It manufactures its products at its existing rented premise in Parit Buntar, Perak. Its own plant, costing MYR12 million, is scheduled to open at the end of 2007.

Products & services
Tuan Haji Jasny Othman says that, based on feedback from stockists and distributors, Natasya is the "No 1 cosmetic product in Malaysia", in terms of sales volume. Its products sells like 'goreng pisang panas' (hot banana fritters) - moving swiftly from manufacturing plant to packaging unit to stockists and, finally, to distributors and end-users. According to him, Natasya enjoys more than MYR1million sale a month. The market demands are rising too rapidly for the production to meet.
Its latest product is the Gamat Prune for diabetics, which took six months to develop. The product will be launched and released on 17 November 2007. Each new formula is based on customers’ testimonials and demands and tested on real users (No Animal Testing). Product upgrading and improvement is handled by six chemists in its Parit Buntar plant.

Pricing strategies
In terms of approach to pricing, Natasya can be considered to adopt a ‘mass-tige’ mode, that is prestige pricing for mass market as well as price lining, charging different prices for different product range.

Marketing strategies
Following the foot prints of NR and ST, Natasya appoints stockists who then recruit distributors nationwide. It used to require a minimum purchase of MYR15,000 to be a stockist in 2003 but now it costs about MYR100,000 to start-up.
Datin Hajjah Muniro started marketing the Natasya brand by wooing factory workers and cooperative members via personal selling. It was not a 'one-off, hit and run’ venture but followed through every month (on pay day). With a policy of money-back guarantee, she built trust and brand loyalty among her regular customers.
There are two Natasya Shoppe outlets in Sungei Petani and Bukit Mertajam and the company is negotiating for booths at hypermarts such as Giant, TESCO and Carrefour.
As for regional and international markets, there are demands from Indonesia, Vietnam, China and the Middle East, but plans for expansion overseas can only be implemented after the new manufacturing plant is launched.

Branding initiatives
The brand name, Natasya, is taken from the founder's granddaughter’s name. Its trademark is registered with the Intellectual Property Corporation Malaysia. The brand's slogan is “Mengembalikan keayuan dan kejelitaan” (To restore your appeal and beauty), its logo is the 'mehrab' (private prayer sanctuary) and its corporate color is green, symbolising Islamic values, nature and freshness.
Its packaging materials, such as acrylic for the bottles, are imported from China.
Perwanza does not believe in hiring brand consultants; their preferred mode is management brainstorming.

IMC strategies
Perwanza has its own media planner who prepares the media schedule, budget and buying of media space/airtime. Natasya's adspend for 2007 is approximately MYR2million for both contractual and ad-hoc media buying.
In terms of media mix, the selection is wide - ranging from print to below-the-line advertisements. Natasya radio ads can be heard on Radio Era (2005), Hotfm (2006) and RTM stations (2007) and its TV commercials over TV3. As for outdoors, there is a billboard in Sungei Petani and signages around the Klang Valley urban market center. The brand also reaches out to commuters via transit ads that wrap around the LRTs plying the KL routes.
Apart from contractual releases, the company also make allocations for 'ad hoc' media buying such as sponsoring RTM’s special Eid programs.
Natasya established good media relations that earned free media publicity via write-ups in Malay publications such as Utusan Malaysia and Harian Metro. The company plans to launch Natasya Voice, a talent show in partnership with RTM, where the winner will perform at the company's second annual dinner.
As for loyalty program, the company offers refund on returned bottles (not meant for recycling) to stimulate repeat purchase. They also hold regular workshops for stockists, distributors and customers.
Like most other Malay cosmetic brands, Natasya relies on in-house spokespersons, from the founder to her daughter, daughter-in-law, sister-in-law and niece.

Executive interview
Jasny bin Othman, General Manager, Perwanza Enterprise (M) Sdn Bhd is an accountant by training. Hence, he prided himself in managing the company's finances well, so well that Perwanza does not have to rely on overdrafts or loans to sustain or expand its business.
He graduated in 1983/84 with a Diploma in Accountancy from UiTM. He joined the national oil and gas corporation, Petronas, in 1986, as an accountant. In 1987, he and his brother started a family business, Pearl of the Orient (in Penang), that operated a travel agency and logistics outfit. They sold the business prior to the economic downturn in 1997 and moved to Kuala Lumpur. They started Perwanza and Natasya in 2002 after dabbling in various business ventures.

No comments: