Brothers Keval, Kunal and Savan Dattani launched their brand Mo Bros in late 2014 with their shared mission to unite men around the world through their facial hair.
The Dattani brothers recognised a massive demand for unique beard oils, balms and waxes, after taking part in Movember – the popular charity campaign raising awareness of men’s health issues – and decided to create their own original blends.
Three years on, and Mo Bros sells its products on eight major airlines, including British Airways, KLM and Ethihad, along with seven cruise ships and online retailers Moonpig and Menkind.
With an annual turnover of well over £1m, and with 11 full-time staff in toe, the Dattanis are well on their way to achieving their entrepreneurial dreams with Mo Bros. Business Advice met the three brothers to find out more about their brand.
(1) Who are you and what’s your business?
We are brothers Keval, Kunal and Savan Dattani and we’re the founders and directors of Mo Bros – a family owned business that creates high quality products and accessories to help men groom their facial hair.
We’ve helped more than 200,000 fellow Mo Bro’s in 78 countries sport the best beard and moustaches they can. Our products are available on ten major airlines around the world, and we have been recognised in our industry as market leaders, having been nominated for several awards. Our mission is to unite men through their facial hair all around the world.
(2) How long have you been around for?
Mo Bros was founded in December 2014.
(3) Where did the idea for the business come from?
We started growing our facial hair for Movember one year, but were unable to complete it due to a few problems. Keval had a wild and unruly beard that was out of control and grew in all directions, while Kunal had a terribly itchy beard, which meant two weeks into Movember he had to shave. Savan didn’t really have much facial hair to speak of!
We decided to find a solution to our three problems. Keval found ingredients that would tame his wild facial hair, Kunal found products that would reduce his beard itch and Savan found ingredients that would thicken his existing hair.
(4) What was key in terms of getting started?
Having confidence in ourselves and our mission of wanting to make a difference. After Movember, we all sat down disappointed and clean shaven. We thought it would be great to be able to grow beards we could be proud of.
Being intrepid entrepreneurs, we started working to find solutions. Our products were first launched on eBay and Amazon, and were sold out in the first 24 hours. It was immediately apparent that there was a huge demand for home recipes of beard oils, balms and moustache waxes.
(5) Any major setbacks along the way?
We had no previous experience of setting up a company, and it became extremely overwhelming at times. The biggest setback was not planning ahead.
At first, we benefitted from rapid growth, but we soon realised that we were missing the foundations of a business, and struggled to scale up. We are now building the foundations by creating a strong team, internal systems and strategic partnerships.
(6) How do you make social media work for your business? Which platforms do you use?
In this era, it is really important to be able to connect with your customers. We use social to build relationships and show what’s happening in the business, so that customers buy into our brand ‘s values and ethics.
We consider Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Linkedin to be the most important platforms for us. We also use social media to understand our customer type, demographic and psychographic. It’s a lot easier to learn about customers through social media.
(7) What’s been the key in pitching to buyers?
We believe you get what you pitch for. The core values of our business are to have fun, educate our customers and make beard grooming simple. Being three brothers, we hope the chemistry of our relationship shines naturally when meeting buyers, investors or partners.
Also, we made the decision to have professional training to help us pitch in front of retailers, investors and partners. The training taught us the need to be clear, authoritative and be able to provide a solution when presented with a problem. You also need a reason why people should buy your product, and what the next steps are for the business.
(8) What one tip would you give to new brands starting out?
It’s important to know and research your market, set objectives and work backwards to make a plan to complete your goals.
(9) In five years’ time, we will be…?
We are currently looking for international investors to help us scale, and to use their existing global network of clients to help scale our business.
Our aim is to have a physical presence in our top five European markets, which are Germany, France, Norway, Italy and Spain, and five other international markets which are USA, Canada, India, Middle East and South Africa.
We see ourselves becoming a successful global business, and the go-to men’s grooming retailer for beard, skincare and haircare.
(10) What motivates you?
Being able to take your vision as far you want to. For us, working with each other every day is also one of the highlights. We each have our own individual motivators, whether they’re personal or work-based achievements. It often feels as though we’re never at work, because we enjoy what we do.
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