Pets have always been some people’s companions. These adorable little creatures have won the hearts of many, and are even considered part of the family. It’s not uncommon for some pet parents to find ways to provide the best for their pets, providing them with plenty of cool pet treats, premium pet food, and more.
However, sourcing pet products is not an easy job for good parents. Product quality has been given great consideration so that the safety and comfort of their furry friends is not compromised. As a result, the range of products that best suit their needs can be quite limited, resulting in pet owners willing to splurge on luxurious, functional and durable pet products. higher.
Understanding the concerns of such pet owners, Donald Kng, a Singaporean, took an interest in creating a “People’s Pet Brand”, which led to the establishment of Vetreska in 2017.
“We offer exquisitely crafted pet products that are not only beneficial and enjoyable for pets, but are also incredibly enjoyable and fun.[-]brought to pet owners,” he said.
Moving from fashion to pet products
Vetreska co-founders Donald and Nico Li first met in college as freshmen at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, where they pursued a career in Fashion Sales Management. and Advertising and Marketing Communications.
When they conducted their research in 2016, Donald shared that their initial focus – “clean beauty” and “sexist fashion” – didn’t come across as often compared to pets, especially cats.
China’s pet industry has grown by 30% annually, which is practically unprecedented. Coupled with the fact that large foreign direct investment in China invests in the consumption market as well as consumption-focused gross domestic product growth policies in China, [it] made us an easy choice to start our company there, not to mention the sheer size of China’s population.
– Donald Kng, Co-Founder of Vetreska
The growth potential of the industry has motivated them greatly and made them think about how to combine fashion and retail training to serve the pet industry. They got creative and started creating unique pet products.
“Our target audience is people who are bored with conventional pet products and hope to add a bit of vitality, luxury and class to their habitat and ownership life. their pet. Those looking to transition into a whole new world of exciting experiences with their pets will consider what Vetreska is offering first,” he added.
Award-winning pet products
When pet parents shop for pet products, there are concerns about whether the product is suitable for their pets, good quality, safe to use. and more.
Donald shared that he understands these concerns regarding pet products and decided to ensure that they are taken into account when creating Vetreska luxury pet products.
He added that he considers functionality, customer relatability, quality, design and trends to be some of the key criteria when developing a pet product. However, he is also aware that because the pet market is highly saturated, these alone will not be enough to ‘win’.
Therefore, instead of focusing only on practicality, Vetreska’s pet products aim to stand out through product design by offering unique and imaginative pieces.
They needed a competitive advantage, so they worked to develop products that the next generation of customers could contact, as well as a solid distribution network, clear brand values, and a positioning that was right for them. suit their target audience.
With the goal of pushing the limits of the pet product imagination to provide pet lovers with fun yet practical designs, Vetreska has taken product design to the next level.
“Our designs often push the boundaries of what pet products can actually be,” he notes.
Being able to see their products like the Cactus Cat Scratcher, Watermelon Cat Litter Box, Bubble Pet Carrier and Cherry Cat Scratcher, Vetreska’s pet products are truly one of a kind.
With their pet products that are both innovative and highly practical, they won CBN 2021 Gen-Z Most Favorite Brand in China, Top 100 High Growth Potential Brand 36Kr, Alibaba Tmall Annual Top 100 2021, KPMG Top 50 New Chinese Brands, Equal Ocean New Top 6 Pet Brands and more.
Over the years, Vetreska has also collaborated with a number of brands, including Intercontinental, Sanrio Hello Kitty and Fiu Gallery.
The brand remains determined to continue serving its purpose of redefining the pet’s lifestyle by taking inspiration from everyday life and incorporating them into pet products.
They broke even in less than six months
Both co-founders invested a total of CNY 1.5 million (about S$300,000) to launch Vetreska and they managed to break even in less than half a year.
Donald also noted that they are “quite lucky” on the fundraising front, as many venture capitalists have actively approached them to invest in the company.
Since its inception, Vetreska has seen tremendous growth. Last year it made over US$120 million (S$166.63 million) and since then it has set up multiple stores in Shanghai and sold to a total of 40,000 pet stores globally.
To provide good parents with an immersive experience with their fur babies, they have also set up Vetreska Playgrounds in areas of Shanghai where products can be tested live. .
However, their success could not be achieved without overcoming the obstacles they faced in their early years.
I will tell [the] supply chain was the most challenging aspect of the past years, simply because we had no prior knowledge and experience in manufacturing pet supplies. We overcame them the same way as many other problems in life – learning from our mistakes as we went along, making new connections [and] develop new skill sets as a company.
– Donald Kng, Co-Founder of Vetreska
During more recent times in 2020 and 2021 at the height of Covid-19, many businesses have been negatively impacted.
Despite the virus outbreak, Vetreska doubled its domestic annual growth as China contained the spread of Covid-19 after the first few months. Vetreska has also ventured abroad and entered the US market by the end of 2020.
These achievements have helped Donald and Nico make it to Forbes Asia’s list of 30 coveted under 30s in 2020.
According to Donald, business has only really experienced the impact of the pandemic with the recent closures in Shanghai. Despite that, thanks to continued support from consumers and strong solidarity, Vetreska has risen from difficult times even stronger.
Homecoming: Vetreska expands to Singapore
After building a successful business in China, Donald revealed that Vetreska recently set up their regional center in Singapore to take it to the next level. In fact, they’ve already started recruiting here over the next month.
“[I]It certainly makes sense for me to set up a regional headquarters here,” he said
Although China’s sheer size is very different from Singapore’s, Donald is confident that the people have much in common. First, he noted that Singapore’s demographics are becoming younger and wealthier, which is in line with Vetreska’s target customer profile.
Furthermore, as Singapore is a global financial hub and effectively a multilingual country, he strongly believes that setting up a regional headquarters here will help connect his business activities. Vestreska in different regions of the globe.
In particular, these refer to their supply chain in China, direct-to-consumer opportunities in the United States, and e-commerce in Southeast Asia.
“In the short term, we expect to see greater growth and brand building as we enter the North American market,[ing] our supply chain capabilities into Southeast Asia,” he said.
With the rise of Web 3.0, which focuses on decentralization and user ownership, many businesses have begun to explore it, and Vetreska is no exception.
According to Donald, they’re currently in the process of creating “Vetreskaland,” a metaverse in which they trade the entire pet-owning experience for the next generation of pet lovers.
Featured image credit: Vetreska