Fenton Baijnath, CEO of Radical Cosmetics, is a well-known contributor within the cosmetics industry in domestic and international markets, having worked as a packaging engineer at companies such as L’Oreal, Revlon, Calvin Klein and Unilever. He holds a number of patents and has received numerous awards for his work. Since 2002, Fenton has been operating Radical Cosmetics, a leading provider of color cosmetics and skin care contract manufacturing.
Fenton relocated his business to Lake Worth in 2010. While the move to Florida was the right one for the company, Radical Cosmetics struggled with cash flow issues and interruptions in production when the new 30,000 square foot manufacturing facility was purchased. With production running at about 30% and 25 employees, Fenton knew he had the capability to increase sales but needed a plan.
Fenton was referred to the Florida SBDC at Palm Beach State College by both the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County and Enterprise Florida to participate in the Export Marketing Plan (EMP) Services to expand his operations internationally. FSBDC certified business consultant Debbie Lanford is an International Trade Specialist who prepares EMPs for qualified clients. By analyzing trade statistics, industry reports, and conducting market research, Lanford was able to create an EMP to identify the best markets for Fenton’s cosmetics.
After reviewing the EMP, Fenton took advantage of a Gold Key Service grant available from Enterprise Florida and, along with the U.S. Commercial Service, he traveled on a trade mission to the Dominican Republic, a country identified as having high potential. Fenton met with pre-screened distributors interested in purchasing cosmetics and left with a $110,000 sale and interest in future orders.
"Debbie has not only helped create a plan to help Radical Cosmetics expand internationally, but has also helped me with my financing needs to increase production levels and fill my new orders," said Fenton. "I have projected several million dollars of sales in the next couple of years and I am grateful for this rewarding relationship."
Fenton is now looking to expand his export operations into Trinidad and Tobago. He is grateful for the assistance of the FSBDC and recommends that others take advantage of the depth and breadth of services offered.
“Working with the SBDC is the best decision that I have made in a long time.” Fenton continued. “They opened the doors to both local and international markets. Here is an organization whose purpose is to help companies like ours grow, I would encourage any company to utilize this service.”