Name To A Face: Dr Jill's Sakpipat Prapasitthi
Born in 1983 to a Bangkok family, Sakpipat Prapasitthi, founder of the popular beauty product brand Dr Jill, admits to having an entrepreneurial streak from a young age. The 38-year-old smiles, “Ever since I was little I had the mindset to get on, so often tutored my friends and juniors in school, for a consideration of course! It was a means to make some pocket money and consolidate my own studies.” It was a practice he kept up while studying packaging and materials technology at the faculty of agro-industry at Kasetsart University.
In his first year of university, C as he is known, was introduced to Amway and worked there part-time. “I learned a lot about the original equipment manufacturing industry (OEM). So when I graduated in 2005 I went to work in product development at an OEM company that provided for many other brands.” There, C poured himself into his job, even on weekends and holidays, often taking work home with him. His diligence gained the attention of his boss, who saw C’s potential and gave him managerial tasks. “I would help where I could and it allowed me to understand the marketing of food supplements and beauty products for over a hundred brands.”
C left the company in 2008 and began to study the OEM market, particularly for single product brands. “I was really interested in smaller marques that only produced a single product as this was what I wanted to do,” he says. After six years he felt the time was right to strike out on his own, first dabbling in personal projects such as a small book publishing business that lasted a year and then in 2014 with Dr Jill, the company he has become synonymous with.
“Dr Jill came about when a friend who was a doctor sent me the formula for a facial serum and vouched for it,” C explains. “I sent the formula to test and found that the product was good, that it worked well and was demonstrably safe. I had always wanted to make my own line of beauty products and I thought the time was right.” With his knowledge of the business and his connections, the only thing left to do was to name the brand. “We simply used the name of the doctor who gave me the formula,” he smiles.
When Dr Jill launched, C admits that there were few difficulties. “The real challenges came as we grew. I had to get really involved in managing our growing number of sales representatives and sales channels, as well as the marketing.” He invested in well-known actors as presenters for the product, with their faces plastered all over town especially at skytrain stations. This strategy proved to be so successful that C was able to indulge in his fondness for luxury labels, often being seen dressed from head to toe in these designer brands.
Now in its seventh year, C is hoping to expand the business. “We’re looking at developing more products. The Dr Jill face serum has been a really good seller and remains popular but the market is changing so we have to adapt,” C says. “A greater choice of products, plus an expansion of the channels they can be purchased through—especially online—are important. We will keep to the practice of taking small steps at a time. You never know, our newest product might not even be launched under the Dr Jill umbrella. But I can guarantee this: whatever its name, it will be of the finest quality.”
See also: Queen Of The Muse: Metinee Kingpayome