As a newcomer it is quite a risk to build up a new business especially in the cosmetics industry, which is dominated by huge What are the biggest challenges?
Entering a highly competitive market with strong rivalry and building a good team.
The A4 products are based on argan oil – that’s why your company works with women’s cooperatives in Morocco. To what extent does this play a role in the perception of the brand?
We have been working with a women’s cooperative in Morocco, which supplies us with our eco-certified argan oil, since the beginning and with a women’s cooperative in Ghana, from which we obtain our unrefined organic shea butter. We support both cooperatives with an annual donation; 50 Cent per sold A4 Kiss & Help Lipbalm goes to the Morocco cooperative and 1 Euro per sold A4 Red Carpet Eye Cream goes to the Shea Butter cooperative in Ghana. In Morocco we have supported different projects: Medicines for the local women and their relatives, water dispensers, toys and computers for the children. In Ghana we built sun and rain roofs and have been financing malaria prophylaxis for 75 women for years. A good cooperation with our suppliers is very important to us – as a result we get exquisite raw materials for further processing in our products, so it’s a win-win situation.
In your opinion, what are the most important skills for successful women entrepreneurs?
Creativity, perseverance, self-confidence, flexibility, motivation and the ability to accept criticism.
Did you have any role models who inspired you or continue to inspire you?
My grandmother Eva Heese, who started to produce natural cosmetics together with a pharmacist 50 years ago. She worked with wonderful ingredients such as orange blossom water, avocado oil, alum etc. for her different skin and hair lines. An innovative and courageous step at the time.
What role does digitalisation play for A4 Cosmetics? Where do you see the greatest opportunities?
In consumer proximity – i.e. to generate the right insights on the basis of data, in order to understand customers’ needs and align our marketing accordingly.Tags: Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, Founder, Germany, Insights, Inspiration, Leadership, Women, Worklife