Small Business Excellence Awards: Top Newcomer of 2019

Small Business Excellence Awards: Top Newcomer of 2019

Corium Skincare extends reach in retail market

Persistence and determination are common themes when entrepreneurs recount their business journeys and these words form the golden thread running through Corium Skincare’s founder Vuyisile Zondi’s story as she recounts details of her quest to conquer the retail market.

This dedicated entrepreneur from KZN had the idea to launch a natural skincare range in 2014 while studying for her PDBA at Wits Business School. Her natural curiosity and interest in beauty led her to research and experiment with different methods of producing skin care lotions. When she was happy and the first jars of hand cream rolled out of her kitchen, up to 15 people a week would pounce on them (ordering via Twitter!) – making her realise she was onto a winner.

In July 2106 she expanded her operations and launched her own online store with her shea butter formulations – and the e-commerce website is full of rave reviews about the high quality of the products.

Zondi’s determination enabled her to have the range included in a number of online stores shortly thereafter and she soon realised that she had a sustainable business. Fast forward to Corium Skincare taking premises at Riversands Incubation Hub in the second quarter of 2019.

A large health and beauty chain had expressed interest in stocking the full range of items such as body butters, facial serums and facial masks and this will take the business to the next level. While this breakthrough has yet to come to fruition, Truworths’ new boutique store-within-a-flagship store, Context – has committed to stocking a limited range of Corium Skincare products.

It comes as no surprise to hear that this former management consultant (who specialised in strategy as well as business improvement initiatives such as turnaround strategies and operational improvement) has stayed the distance in her business. Zondi’s background has been put to good use
while she has been shaping her own destiny.

Corium is the Latin word for “the truest skin” since this describes the brand promise, another indicator of her philosophy of remaining true to herself and pushing ahead no matter how difficult the circumstances.