Yin and Yang: How do you balance work and family?
As with many New Zealand businesses, we have some of our family working with us, and even our other staff call themselves part of the “family”. At baby shows our three adult children all help. But quite often we work weekends and nights just trying to keep on top of things, and of course with retailers open over weekends, we like to be able to be contacted should they need assistance.
The Drive: What challenges have you overcome?
When we first started back in 2011, the warehouse and offices seemed enormous with huge empty spaces. Last year we had to relocate to much larger premises as we couldn’t fit anything else in our old warehouse. Once again, the whole family pitched in and helped us set up the new offices and warehouse.
Of course, there are always new brands entering the market, and parents sometimes think these brands look more exciting or may be more innovative. There are so many success stories with NUK that it doesn’t take long before someone enlightens new parents to the brand of choice!
We launched our other brands, Belly Bandit and Tidy Tot, which were both new to New Zealand at the time. They are amazing products, but it takes a lot of energy and resources getting the word out about them. With our usual passion, we have managed to bring them into the New Zealand market.
For better or worse: What are the pros and cons of running your own business?
In our case, we made the decision early on to try and keep our breastfeeding products as economical as possible. That means we don’t make big profits. We certainly work long hours and laugh that we are the lowest paid in our business. But the reward is when we get a call from a new mum saying NUK is the only brand her baby will use. We know we now have a happy mum and baby!
Hopes and dreams: What next?
We always have so many plans, it is just finding more time in the day to execute them all. Currently we are adding extra staff around the country, and hope that we can expand our brands into more stores so no parents of young babies need to go too far to find our products.