Get to know this Dutch company Yaviva, located in Zeist and founded by Pieter Hofland seven years ago. This company, which offers high-quality organically certified brands and products, really cares about the people and the nature and wants to make the world a little more beautiful by offering these products. Curious about this wonderful company? You can read all about it in our interview with Pieter!
When I was 26 years old, graduated in philosophy, it was difficult to get a job, so I started my own business. They were two IT companies in wireless IT equipment, also known as WIFI. At some point I started thinking about the environment and ecologically responsible living and then I had a moment of realization.
I do use WIFI and am not against it either, but I also don't want to be a dealer in it because of the radiation. I think about it consciously, which is why I prefer to be a dealer of products that make people healthier and that make the world a little bit better. That turned out to be ecological cosmetics. I met someone who worked in cosmetics and I thought there must be a healthier and better way to do it, and I was right. Back then, the ecological cosmetics industry was very small. So, about seven years ago, I founded Yaviva.
I chose to become a wholesaler because setting up your own brand is really a different game. Being a manufacturer is really different from being a wholesaler. Being a wholesaler is about the broad story in which more brands fit. A manufacturer is always a pretty narrow story. I want to take the whole organic cosmetics industry to a higher level. That is why I find it a more fun challenge than just working on one brand.
In any case, the products must be natural. In fact, every brand should be certified organic, or have the opportunity to become one. Some brands are still too small to get certified since it is very expensive. We want to help these smaller brands to grow so they can also get certified one day.
Furthermore, the product, the packaging and the story behind the brand have to be right. The appearance, the social media of the brand, from which country it's from and who the owner is, are also important criteria in the choice. That whole picture has to be right and connected to each other. For example, we have three makeup brands: Boho Cosmetics, Benecos, Uoga Uoga† It's a triangle, it reinforces each other. Uoga Uoga is the cleanest brand in europe, handmade make-up based on minerals and fruit pigment, there is nothing else in it. That's brilliant! It is a bit more expensive, has a special story but has all loose powders, not everyone likes that. Benecos is the cheapest organic certified make-up brand in europe and Boho Cosmetics pays very close attention to the use of plastic and has a bohemian style, again very different.
We prefer brands from Europe, which has to do with CO2 emissions and the transport problems that occur when you get products from outside Europe. We have established rules when choosing brands. The first rule is that we want to have a good brand in every category, the best brand of its kind. Rule two is that it should be produced as close to us as possible. However, this should be possible, we first go for the best product and then for the location. SURYA Brazil for example, is the only organic and sustainable hair dye brand that matches our standards, so we have to get it from Brazil.
Back in the day, the coolest car you could own was a Hummer, a huge beast with a really big engine and a kind of whirlpool in the tank. Now we are 15 years later and you are actually an antisocial bear if you drive a Hummer like that. So something has really changed. They are all individuals and small companies who take small steps and therefore make a big movement together. Companies like L'oreal Paris have to at some point, you can't stay behind anymore. Especially now that so much is known about the impact of the cosmetic industry on the world and the environment. Our goal is now to be able to offer an ecological/organic (certified) product for every product that has a regular option.
Our make-up category is relatively large. We have three make-up brands and they are our number 1, 2, and 4. We don't necessarily have customers who only buy make-up, but apparently that is just a very popular product. The larger brands often run a bit better. Such as joik, they have 150 kinds of products. They have everything you can imagine. People like to go to one place where they can find everything.
In three areas. Firstly, anything that cleans. Cleansers, body wash, etc. It contains SLS, which is not a good product to use on your skin and is often the first or second ingredient. Organic body wash or shampoo does not contain this product. The other category is deodorant. You use deodorant near your lymphatic system; normal deodorants contain aluminum salt and that can be very harmful.
There are still many steps to be taken in sunscreen as well. Normal sunscreen contains oxybenzone and this, in all likelihood, is not good for your skin,. Also, regular sunscreen has a huge share in the death of the coral reef.
Furthermore, the organic cosmetics industry really lacks the absolute budget side of the regular cosmetics. But you have to ask yourself; do you want that? What kind of quality will you get then?
We also have a B2B platform ourselves, but in the end I fully support what Plato said: “you have to let people do what they are good at”. We are very efficient and have a feeling for good brands, but I don't think we have the best platform. Orderchamp is specialized in their platform and marketplace. Theis creates the best of both worlds. Orderchamp doesn't have their own brands, we do. Orderchamp has an amazing platform, we don't. That's a win-win.
We get a few orders per day and we have also gained many new customers through Orderchamp. We see that the majority of the retailers which we get through Orderchamp are international. We really like that, it's a new way to approach international retailers. Initially, we did this our selves per region, now we can do this in a slightly broader and automated way and that is great.
Ten years ago, it were only the green guys who bought organic cosmetics. Now, we are increasingly seeing new concepts emerge: concept, clothing, cosmetics & coffee stores in one. All kinds of combinations that didn't exist before. Why go for a Nivea when you can also choose Alphanova sun ? When two products have equal price and quality; why not go for an organic/ecologically responsible product? It really doesn't matter anymore.
My biggest tip is to keep going: try, try, try. I've founded a total of six companies and the biggest mistake I've made every time is thinking about what customers would want in advance and setting it up completely. Halfway through, I found out that customers wanted something a little different or wanted it done a little differently. If I had built in that flexibility in advance, it would have been even better. Always be true to your philosophy, but be flexible in your execution.
As a retailer, do you want to expand your range with these beautiful brands from Yaviva? Shop them and take advantage of the best purchasing conditions such as: flexible payment terms, free shipping above €250 and low minimum order amounts.