Racquell Brown's success
WERE it not for being made redundant, Racquell Brown, owner of Irie Rock Limited, would not have become the successful Jamaican businesswoman she is today.
According to the 33-year-old, who now manufactures and sells natural skin care products, the whole idea to become an entrepreneur first came to her four years ago when the company where she was fully employed began laying off staff members.
"After the first wave of redundancies I took my whole two week's vacation and acquired my first set of customers. Literally a year after that I was let go, which was good for me. It gave me an opportunity to finally focus on the marketing of my own business," said Brown, whose business was registered in 2009.
"In fact, only a month after, Irie Rock gained its first significant client with the SuperClubs group."
The company, located in Edgewater, Portmore, sells a line of face and skin care products made from natural ingredients -- papayas, mangoes, coconuts, vanilla, coffee, citrus, tea tree and witch hazel oils -- which can be used on normal or problem skin.
Just five months ago, Brown's business was awarded one of the National Bakery's Bold Ones of Manufacturing for 2014.
Brown told Career & Education that owning a business involves many challenges which an entrepreneur has to be prepared for.
"[Being an entrepreneur] can be frightening at times, because you do not have that safety in knowing that you're going to be getting that pay cheque at the end of the month and your bills will be covered. At the same time, it's pretty amazing knowing that you have been able to create something from absolutely nothing, and it is impacting others."
For the rest of 2014 and beyond, the determined entrepreneur, who has four employees and seasonal promoters as part of her team, said she has new business objectives she hopes will be fulfilled.
"We are satisfied with the progress we have made over the years, given that we started in the heart of a recession. We have been successful in meeting goals that we set in terms of distribution and getting the products to a wider market. In November 2013 we had our first export order and we are looking forward to many more," Brown said.
What is her daily motivation?
"To create something that is bigger than myself, such as high quality skin care products that will have more impact on others," she said.