It started with one idea. Today, our team has 40 people and produces nutritional supplements for companies from different parts of Europe. We recently celebrated our 5th anniversary, which was an excellent opportunity to talk to our CEO Martin Guniš. We took a look at how the company evolved during that time, what was important, and what to expect from the future.
Do you remember how it all started five years ago?
It started when my friend and I went to the gym and first started selling nutritional supplements. But we did not manage to start up the company. At that time, my father, who had his own company, suggested that we could start producing nutritional supplements. We didn’t know anything about the production, but we decided to try it.
Since my father offered collagen as a complementary product in his company, it was also our first product. That was followed by the initial investment and the subsequent search for business partners in Slovakia who did not offer collagen.
About a year after founding the company, we launched the first website, where we started advertising abroad. Thanks to this, we gradually acquired customers outside the Slovak market.
Were there any important milestones during that time?
Moving to new premises was a big milestone for us. It was definitely also the recruitment of the first employees because I had never had employees before. Of course, the expansion into the foreign market was also an important milestone. This year it will be a transfer to a new hall.
What were the challenges you had to overcome?
In the beginning, the biggest challenge was learning everything about the production of nutritional supplements – how machines or production processes work. We had to study legislation and standards, i.e. what is allowed and what is not. It was, for example, what information must be on the label or how we can combine the ingredients. It was also difficult to find primary suppliers of raw materials.
GreenPharm is a family business. What do the employees mean to you?
We perceive employees as individuals, not as production units. We try to create a pleasant working environment for them, make their work comfortable, and make them feel good in our company. And according to their feedback, we’re doing it right.
Has the field of nutritional supplements changed in 5 years?
We’ve been producing collagen since the beginning, and that trend persists. There is also interest in powder nutritional supplements. However, the demand for capsule supplements has risen in the last two years.
Customers care more about the product packaging. Five years ago, they didn’t mind that the product was packaged in a plastic jar. Today, it is important for them whether the packaging is recyclable. Thus, the sustainability trend also reaches the field of nutritional supplements.
What are your future plans for the company?
We plan to launch a new production, for example, of liquid supplements we don’t offer yet after moving into new premises this year. Pharmaceutical products come into consideration in the long run.
What does this anniversary mean to you?
I never expected to be where we were now after five years. It reflects how we approach the company, employees, customers and business. But I really didn’t expect to get that far in such a short time. It is a great progress for me, and I hope it will continue.