Cosmetics is one of the fastest growing markets in Asia. Over the last decade, its market value in the Asia Pacific region has increased to more the US$70 billion. In Malaysia, imports make up around 50 percent of cosmetics sales. Muka & Co is redefining the industry in the country by producing its own quality line of make-up and skin care products. Founder and CEO, Nabilah Mohammad Isa, reveals more to International Business Review.
“In moments of great turmoil, business is always affected. The COVID 19 pandemic was and continues to be a challenge – forcing us to change and look at things in new ways we hadn’t thought before. However, with every challenge comes opportunity.
At Muka & Co, we took the challenge as an opportunity to better ourselves. It required us to optimise our operations, readjust cash flow, and manage our operating expenses to avoid laying off staff our cutting salaries.
However, what truly sustained us was a culture of innovation and our identity as a beauty tech company. From the moment of our establishment, Muka & Co has developed and thrived online, leveraging on technology to provide solutions for our customers.
For instance, we discovered that during the Movement Control Order (MCO), a vast majority of businesses, especially in the retail, had to lay-off employees without new business to sustain them. We took that as a challenge to intensify the development of a super app we’ve had in the works called Super Pal, which provides users with access to a large pool of services.
All too often, users have to juggle between too many apps with limited capabilities. Our platform will provide a shared ecosystem in which both users and service providers can benefit.
So in effect, the pandemic – bad as it was – was an opportunity for us; in fact our sales performance and engagement increased by as much as five times.
Nevertheless, we had some setbacks. Generally, our customers prefer to try on products before making a purchase. As such, we are in the process of developing our digital collaterals to elevate the user experience.
One of the ways in which we stand out is that we are the first sustainable beauty tech company in the region that celebrates natural beauty and wellness. We aim to transform self-care routines into an enjoyable experience, giving beauty a cause to celebrate each day.
We have been persistent in developing a scalable, economical and sustainable beauty ecosystem by leveraging on cutting-edge technology such as Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence Augmented Reality to create a seamless and intuitive experience for our customers. We help women enhance their natural looks by creating and curating products that are safe, useful and accessible.
My dream has always been to make this world a better place. With technology, vision and a mission, we have a real chance in saving lives, curbing poverty, discrimination, educating, and spreading kindness, love and understanding. I have faith that 2021 will be a year of blessings, abundance and fortune – not just for us at Muka & Co, but for others as well.”