While his work abroad has exposed him to world-class products, this entrepreneur relishes coming home to the Philippines and offering an all-natural line of soaps and haircare products to the market.
After 25 years of working abroad for some of the world’s top fragrance companies and living in Singapore, Hong Kong and New York, Ricky Lopez decided to come home to the Philippines and build a new dream: to create his own products he knows people need. In 2017, he founded Wonderful World of Wellness (WOWOW), the parent company of soap brand Jabon Jabon and hair care brand Sibol.
While the market for these products is already dominated by commercial brands, Ricky and his team knew that they had something different and worthwhile to offer.
“For us to make a difference as a start-up local challenger, we endeavored to create only authentic world-class all-natural soaps, freshly handmade by local artisans using only 100% plant-derived ingredients, with none of the ‘bad stuff’ found in most mass-produced soaps,” Ricky says.
His exposure to all-natural products and his knowledge of the potential of the natural resources available in the Philippines inspired him to go this route. Ricky beams that his products are also Food and Drug Administration-approved.
In 2019, Jabon Jabon entered into a partnership with Kultura. A year later, Kultura also started carrying Sibol. Ricky considers this partnership pivotal in these brands’ growth.
“Being in Kultura allowed us to reach a much wider audience for our all-natural products. It has been a catalyst for growth for WOWOW, and this inspires us to create, innovate and offer more high-quality all-natural products to the Filipino Market,” Ricky says.
From starting with just a handful of employees in 2017, WOWOW now has 20 regular workers in its fold. It is also planning to expand its line of products. Aside from the growth of his brands, Ricky relishes in the fact that he is back home and pursuing his true passion.
“I have the freedom to create in an environment that I designed to jibe well with our advocacy for all-natural products. What I am doing is giving back and creating products that I know this country needs, creating something meaningful,” Ricky shares.
Jabon Jabon and Sibol are available at Kultura located in SM Malls. You may also order Jabon Jabon, Sibol, and other uniquely Filipino items at www.kulturafilipino.com.
For more than 60 years, SM, and its affiliate brands like Kultura, has been home to thousands of MSMEs. As SM grew, so did its MSME partners. From those years of partnership, SM and MSMEs once again stand together to build back stronger.