With Calinz, entrepreneur Bilal Yakhlaf wants to introduce the world to Moroccan gold: Argan oil. The oil has been praised for centuries for its beneficial effects. It nourishes the skin, nails and hair, is rich in antioxidants and has a moisturizing effect. Bilal's search for pure, honest and high-quality products, made from this miracle oil, eventually led him to produce them himself. In The Time Ahead, MASTERS looks to the future with the young entrepreneur and exhibitor at MASTERS EXPO: what does he hope to have achieved in ten years' time and what will he take with him to the fair in December?
If you could have invented something that has been invented in the last 50 years, what would it be?
"A quantum computer. Not only because of the financial return I would have achieved, but also because I believe that this computer will change the way we live in the future."
What was the initial reaction to the business plan and from whom did it come?
"Thefirst person I told about my plan was my colleague in the office. He reacted very enthusiastically, he already knew Argan oil and fully supported the product. I told my colleague about Calinz's plans for the future: the lifestyle we want to convey, the farmers we help and the women's organisations that work for Calinz in Morocco.
My colleague and I know each other well; He knows that I work with passion and full conviction when I start something. My colleague has the same attitude, by joining forces we can work very well together and manage my team well."
What is your company's vision?
"The goal is to introduce people to Argan oil. But above all, I want to mean something to people with Calinz and create a better world in Argan oil; Calinz becomes a lifestyle. It is important to me that everyone involved benefits from the success we are achieving. For example, we have agreed with the farmers in Morocco to pay a daily price. You often see that companies from abroad have entered into a kind of stranglehold contracts with these farmers with a fixed price for their products for, for example, four or five years. As a result, farmers could be in trouble if prices rise. I also want to do something for women in Morocco. I actually only have one male colleague, the rest of the company consists of only women."
"Above all, I want to do something for my fellow man with Calinz. Calinz becomes a lifestyle"
What's the biggest milestone you've reached so far?
"Our customer satisfaction is very high. At Trusted Shops we score almost all stars, when I see that I think it's a real milestone. Another highlight was sales in the first year. In the first year, we had the same numbers in terms of sales as a major competitor from the Netherlands. That's when I knew, 'We're on the right track.'"
What do you hope to have achieved in ten years' time?
"I want everyone in the world to know what Argan oil is in ten years' time. Argan oil from Calinz is a pure and honest product. Before I even came up with the name of the company, I knew I wanted to go global. The good results achieved in the first year give me a lot of positive energy and motivation to continue this line."
Who is your dream customer?
"I don't necessarily have a dream client, but I do have a company I would like to work with. They have 2700 branches around the world."
MASTERS EXPO focuses on craftsmanship, innovation and entrepreneurship. What do you hope the scholarship will bring you?
"The foundation of Calinz has already been laid on Dutch soil, but I think that at MASTERS EXPO we can introduce the brand at a higher level. There are also a lot of international brands present, so I think I can expand my network."
MASTERS EXPO is Europe's only exclusive business fair and focuses on craftsmanship, innovation and entrepreneurship. Approximately four hundred special (family) businesses from almost twenty different industries – from business to lifestyle, cars to design and watches to boats – will enter the exhibition floor from 8 to 12 December 2022 in RAI Amsterdam. Keep an eye on the website before the start of ticket sales.