Independently owned fragrance house, who is elijah, is the epitome of Australian homegrown success. Starting out in the corner of a two-bedroom apartment in 2018, the brand is now reporting over $4.5 million in profit in just five years. 

With the business about to expand its presence in the US, as well as tap into new markets including the UK and Europe, Retailbiz spoke to who is elijah CEO and co-founder, Adam Bouris about recent achievements including a 500% increase in direct-to-consumer sales in the past six months alone.  

“Key to our increase in sales was a solid influencer marketing strategy. We worked hard to understand what content our community likes to engage with and developed digital ads that engaged them. With Raquel (my wife) being the face and voice of the brand, we have always been authentic and raw in the way we present ourselves to our community,” Bouris said.

“Overall, consumers seem to be gravitating towards more niche companies and away from the big-name brands. Consumers want something new and who is elijah fills this gap.”

Key to success here and abroad

Being a local brand, Bouris believes the Australian community has got behind them and supported their journey.

“Our hands-on approach was also key in getting support from our customers. Everyone loved that we hand-filled our perfume bottles and were transparent about how we made our products by sharing our behind-the-scenes story from day one,” he said.

who is elijah co-founder, Raquel Bouris.

“Our US following is still in its early days and we still get that immediate positive feedback from the public. Once people smell our fragrance, they love it. We have had early success with some big retailers in the US such as Urban Outfitters, Free People, Anthropologie and boutique retailers. We are now putting a lot of effort into our marketing activities and investment in the US and we are excited to start to see growth there.

“Moving forward, a key priority is to understand more about our new markets, such as the UK and ensure we succeed on a large scale. We have plans to partner with bigger retailers and have some amazing fragrances in the works to launch this year that will surprise our customers. We owe a lot to our perfumer; he pushes boundaries and we are excited to get our new creations out into the world.”

Adopting digital tools reduces costs and increases productivity

Becoming a digital-first company has contributed to who is elijah’s early success; developing digital-based processes to scale quickly and manage the logistics and manufacturing demands of a fast growing e-commerce fragrance brand.

“One of the key requirements from a technological standpoint was for our inventory and distribution processes to be connected to our online and wholesale areas of the business. We needed our distribution team connected to our wholesales partners and we had to ensure our over 350 wholesale partners were able to seamlessly place orders and check their accounts. We also needed a simple way to assess the hundreds of stockists that wanted to stock our products,” Bouris said.

“We had a lot of challenges to overcome in a short period of time, however ultimately it was the technology that we built with Salesforce that allowed who is elijah to grow our wholesale division from 50 to 350 accounts in 12 months without needing an account manager. Salesforce streamlined our processes and ensured we would be able to access everything in one place.”