What is kenvil?
if home care brand Kinfill wants to make sustainable living more accessible through design. The startup started with a cleaning line: pure scents, a sustainable packaging system, and biodegradable products in a tailored jacket.
My girlfriend was shopping in the most sustainable supermarkets in Rotterdam. There I paid premium prices for basic cleaning products. Excellent price, no premium experience? This has to change, as I thought two years ago, says founder Reza Al-Jawahiri, 32.
Today there is a sustainable cleaning line, designed by designers and perfumers. I love comparing our product to a Trojan horse. How can we design something so that someone, like my crazy mother with Rituals and Bijenkorf, makes more sustainable choices by buying the design? Sustainability is the starting point. Design our excuse.
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Who is behind it?
Reda El-Gawahri studied advertising at the Willem de Kooning Academy and then applied for a job at Fabrica, a type of Benetton research center for young creative talents in Treviso, Italy. “Only 25 talents were accepted. I came without training in art and design, but with a message full of ideas. Here I learned to take my ideas seriously, which gave me the confidence to start the business later.
There are stores in Singapore that sell Kinfill, without us doing anything ourselves
After four years as creative director at a premium footwear and apparel company in Rotterdam, the jeweler decided to break into the market with his own brand: Kinville. It was found that only 5 percent of all plastic worldwide is recycled. Most cleaning products are made up of more than 90 percent water.
It creates an illusion of value, but it creates waste. Because every drop of that water must be bottled, distributed, traded, and transported. Surely this should be done in a smarter, more sustainable way?
Results? The ‘Bottle Forever’ complements 10ml of highly concentrated Kinfill essence with a pint of tap water.
Who is waiting for her?
The target group is wide, because everyone cleans. However, Kinfill mainly focuses on young women (as well as men) who have just purchased/decorated their first home. “This woman (or man) has a modern lifestyle, wants to make sustainable and limited choices, and therefore finds it important to have something that looks beautiful.”
How far is Kenville?
In 2020, the startup was delivered for the first time in the Netherlands. It started, thanks to a great AD article, in a very good way. Kinfill now also sells in Scandinavia, China, Japan and Iceland.
Remarkably, Kinfill recently started its own sales division. Since our launch, there’s been a pulling effect. We noticed retailers all over the world, so we got orders from everywhere and from nowhere. There are even stores in Singapore that sell Kinfill, without us doing anything ourselves.
Kinfill is currently in the approval process for B Corp: a sustainability certification that has been issued since 2006 by the US non-profit organization B Lab. They are not evaluating the product, but the entire business.
As a result, we are proactively working on our strategy and policy for the first time. Our team now consists of ten people. This year we especially want to keep these 10 people happy, bring in B Corp and expand our product line.
point in sight? Be a brand where you can buy everything about care, it’s sustainable and it looks good. We are currently looking into (international) possibilities with our retailers and distributors. We’re busy with that, but at the same time I don’t want to look too far into the future, because even today there’s still so much to do.
What is the revenue model?
The revenue model is based on e-commerce, which recently also included a subscription model. The complete starter package from Kinfill costs just under 20 euros. Contains 1 “Forever Bottle” cup and ampoule with a concentrated cleaning agent. A separate ampoule costs 4.95 euros.
I want to build something for the next thirty years, maybe a hundred years
Do you subscribe? After that, you will receive a letterbox with refills every eight weeks for €149 per year. “Buying our design bottle is an investment, but the ampoules are very affordable.”
Kinfill has doubled its revenue in the past two years. The prediction for this year? Its turnover is one million euros. The jeweler doesn’t want to say anything about the win yet.
Do you still need the money?
The jeweler likes to make an exception for MT/Sprout, but usually prefers not to call Kinfill as a startup. “I always refer to Kinfill as a small growing company. I do it for a reason. I want to build something for the next 30 years, maybe a hundred years. That’s why I don’t do investment rounds or exits. Sometimes I talk to entrepreneurs who are already talking about their exit after two years. Then I think : Dude, come on, that’s when the fun begins!”
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