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Find out what our team has been up to.
Our next customer spotlight is on Aeryon Wellness, a female-owned, Canadian supplement brand looking to make a difference in women’s lives. Using the latest scientific research, Aeryon Wellness formulate and distribute the highest grade, all-natural support supplements and provide education on achieving sustainable wellness.
You might have heard of Aeryon Wellness when founder Aeryon Ashlie appeared on Dragon’s Den. If not, check out the full pitch here.
We caught up with Aeryon to chat about Aeryon Wellness and their journey so far:
I started Aeryon Wellness three years ago. I’ve been in the supplement space for twenty years and worked for some of the largest names in the industry. After working for one company for twelve years, I had amassed over $25 million in sales. This not only gave me long-standing relationships with retailers but also a wealth of knowledge regarding sales and marketing. However, I always knew in my mind that I wanted to create my own brand. When Jameson bought the company, I was working for, they also bought the only women-focused brand on the market (Smart Solutions.) It was shortly after the acquisition I was packaged out. I knew then that there would be an opportunity to have another female-focused and female-owned brand that supported women to reach their health and wellness goals.
One message I always struggled with in the supplement space was “Take this pill/powder/vitamin, and everything’s going to be so much better.” This stems from my health history. I struggled with bulimia for twenty-five years, and as far back as I can remember, I was always looking for a quick fix to lose weight. In my mid-thirties I ended my twenty-year relationship with hormonal birth control and began to work through my eating disorder at the same time. I had a support team, counsellors, and I started looking at my relationship with food and movement, then lastly the supplement side of things. When I started looking at supplements, there was nothing that really resonated with me. The current products did not have clinical doses or were providing the education needed to make lasting change. I wanted to make science-based products with integrity and with fewer pills needed.
The whole premise of my business stems around my five pillars: the thoughts you think, the friends you keep, your daily movement, nutrition, and supplementation. All of these are so crucial to sustainability in wellness. I implemented a QR code on the label of each of my products so that I could share this information and educate my customers to ensure all five pillars are covered. Each QR code links to a 30-60 second video, where I tell the customer everything that’s in the product (so you know what you’re buying), vegan and non-vegan recipes, and other unique suggestions and strategies to help customers find sustainable health and wellness. For example, the video for our Reclaim Hormonal Support supplements includes a breakdown of the four phases of a woman’s cycle, what they’re going to feel like, what exercises they should be doing, and what foods they should be focused on. That, to me, is a differentiating factor. With so many supplements in the market, I want my customers to feel confident with what they’re buying and be able to make an informed decision.
I'm proud to have a 13-year-old daughter who has watched me take this from nothing and work my ass off. I’m a single, full-time mom with no support here; it’s just her and I at all times, so her seeing that if you want something to happen, you have to work for it.
I remember when I first launched two SKUs at the Vancouver Wellness show, as she stood in our booth, she looked up at me and said, “I’m proud of you, mommy, you did it.” Her witnessing the growth of Aeryon Wellness, watching Dragon’s Den, and juggling our life together is proof that, with hard work, all things are possible.
The other thing I’m proud of is the QR codes; Currently, we are the only supplement company in Canada using them to support our customers on their journey. As we grow the brand, every single product will have one, so we’re going to have this huge variety of products and education to support women.
Lastly, we have donated a portion of every bottle to the Downtown Eastside Women’s Shelter here in Vancouver. Our goal is to create products our retailers can earn a healthy margin with to support their families, formulas and support that make a difference in our consumers' lives and lastly to give back to those in need.
3) How did you manage through COVID?
After the first six months, the business started getting legs, and I was able to qualify for CERB, which was huge and helped me dramatically. Educating consumers and retailers via Zoom, rather than driving or flying all over Canada, has also helped in keeping to our budget.
Now it's a little different with the supply chain issues, which is going to have a part to play in products being launched and developed and whatnot. I tried to forecast as much as I possibly could, but there were a lot of delays. Currently, some of my raw ingredients are back-ordered, and I have 24,000 SKUs of Water b Göne Diuretic Support that are waiting for one missing ingredient.
I met Tosh at a BC Lions game when I was with my friend and her husband, who was one of Tosh’s clients. I was with another supplier at that time but just went with Tosh and hadn’t looked back; it’s been an excellent partnership. Savannah, his assistant, is awesome; she gets back to me right away, which is great. It’s really easy; I send the labels in, everything gets confirmed, and it’s good.
5) What are you currently working on, and what are you excited about in the next few years?
I'm really excited about our website update in January; it’s called “New Year, New You, New Us.” We’re also doing a newsletter focused around the five pillars with a monthly mantra (the thoughts you think), interviews with women who are doing amazing things in their community (the friends you keep), a recipe of the month, movement of the month, and a supplement feature of the month. We’re really trying to make this a community that can add to women’s lives.
The other thing I’m super excited about is our next SKU. We’re the only one in Canada with the NPN for this; it’s boric acid. It’s a vaginal suppository for bacterial vaginosis (BV) and yeast infections. It’s going to come in a box with an applicator, and it’s called Up and Away because you put it up, and it goes away! I want to normalize the conversation around topics like this, BV is normal, and it is easy to get it; your PH can be thrown off so easily. I want my 13-year-old daughter to be empowered. We need to take the guilt and shame away from conversations like this. I’m just really excited to have a product like this that works after one or two doses, with no need for antibiotics, and it’s all-natural.
I'm hoping to launch this product at the CHFA in April!