The Big Idea: Baby products from down under boom in Whistler

While Whistler is known around the world as a mecca for outdoor adventures, one of the community’s newest business owners sees tremendous opportunity for the resort to become a centre for beauty and wellbeing as well.

Sally Simond is founder and CEO of miniOrganics. The mother of two recently relocated the headquarters of her booming baby business from Australia to Whistler with the belief that the resort — and the Sea to Sky corridor — are emerging as a world class location for health and wellness.

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Simond’s business offer a fully certified range of organic skin care products developed specifically for infants and new mothers. Her philosophy is as pure as her products: she is committed to creating what she believes are the purest and safest products for moms and their young families, which means keeping her formulations free from genetically modified ingredients, pesticide residues, petrochemicals, sulphates and parabens.

“We strive at every turn to deliver the best product possible, be that in our formulations, packaging, advertising, marketing and promotion,” Simond explained. “As a mom, I am driven by the desire to provide the very best for my children. As a marketer, I am driven to deliver consumers exceptional, ethical products of the highest standards.”

Reaching a recreational market

The move to Whistler opened Simond’s eyes to the broader appeal of her products, expanding her reach to the extreme sport industry. Simond saw the adventure-driven outdoor lifestyle had a tribe of eco-aware consumers who share her desire for cleaner, greener and safer products.

Simond is seizing this opportunity to take an athletic approach. The soothing nipple balm is also praised as a moisturizing lip balm to pamper the puckers of skiers exposed to drying winter winds and plummeting temps, the Protective Nappy (Diaper) Balm has a cult following of bikers and runners to combat chaffing and the Superfine Jojoba is a perfect healer for nails and hands ravaged by a day of rock climbing.

Simond jokingly recalls tales from her customers who witnessed raised eyebrows from curious partners when spotting diaper balm or nipple cream in one’s adventure backpack.

From this she saw an opportunity and is now working on a new extreme range specifically for this market with more universally friendly labels that will see the diaper balm, for example, transformed to biker balm.

Aligning with excellence

Relocating her headquarters to Whistler Simond has rebranded to create a reputation for her products as a Canadian luxury certified organic skincare line.

“I think that everything about my brand embodies the very best that nature has to offer — just like Whistler,” Simond said.
With luxury in mind, Whistler was the natural fit as home base for her brand. To reach a larger retail audience Simond has also found a perfect match with Canada’s iconic Hudson’s Bay Company, a retail brand that she says shares the same standards of excellence. She is currently working with the retail powerhouse to begin distribution of miniOrganics in the lucrative luxury markets of North America.

Planting Canadian roots

Simond’s brand has earned over 20 international awards and amassed an impressive celebrity and beauty media following. When it was time to relocate to Canada, she brought an impressive product with a reputation in the health and wellness industry worldwide.

She quickly acted to work with the Canadian Trade Commission to establish her business in Canada. She gained on-the-ground assistance to plant Canadian roots for her company and is now leveraging their expertise to expand her business and identify new opportunities overseas.

“I have been overwhelmed by the support of the community, government organizations and international markets. It is funny, but in many ways I feel closer to my roots here than anywhere else on earth,” she said.
It appears this grassroots brand, originally from down under, is at home in Whistler and now finds itself perfectly positioned to put this luxury beauty brand on the map.

“Whistler has long been recognized as one of the world’s leading destinations for recreational tourism, but I believe it is also emerging as a world-class centre for beauty and wellbeing — and will be the new health and wellness capital of the world.”

Make business easy — tune in to The Big Idea, a bi-weekly column from the Whistler Chamber of Commerce showcasing a Whistler business innovating in their sector.

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