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November 5, 2018

With candles that contain jewelry, My Jolie Candle has generated over 10 million euros in revenue. The company managed to fundraise 7 million euros to continue their development.

Les Echos – Monday, November 5th 2018

MY JOLIE CANDLE: A BRAND BORN ON THE INTERNET TAKES OFF

With candles that contain jewelry, My Jolie Candle has generated over 10 million euros in revenue. The company managed to fundraise 7 million euros to continue their development.

Samuel Guez loves the candle market. At twenty-three years old, after working in an investment fund, he joined the start up Popup Paris, that sells candles (notably at the department store Bon Marché) where one in fifty contain a diamond. He then pivoted the company towards a b2b model for all kinds of brands. “My goal was to dust off a market that was very promising but somewhat aging,” he states. But the young entrepreneur quickly began to feel constrained in a model “composed of too many intermediaries.” In 2015, he decided to create his own brand: My Jolie Candle, which sells scented candles with jewelry hidden inside directly from its website. “We offer real value: our candles are made with vegetable wax, we design our candles internally and they’re set with Swarovski crystals for a price that defies all our competitors,” explains the entrepreneur.  

Focusing on the wow effect his concept generated, Samuel Guez is now developing a “digital native vertical brand,” a brand that targets young adults with products developed and distributed online. “Selling scented candles online has been a real feat,” he boasts.

Influencer Manager

A feat that would have been much harder if the company hadn’t mastered the secret weapon for this kind of brand: Instagram. On this visual-heavy social media platform, “influencers”— people who have a large online community following their publications— work to make people love products. “For us, it’s an important marketing channel because it offers a strong return on investment,” Samuel Guez acknowledges. The influencers are remunerated based on their impact: those who have few followers just receive free products while those with hundreds of thousands of followers can be paid 10,000 to 25,000 euros per post. To generate this, My Jolie Candle hired an influencer manager, “the company’s third hire after my artistic director,” according to the entrepreneur.

My Jolie Candle now employs over twenty people, a headcount that should double over the course of next year. Although up until now the company financed its growth, they’ve announced that 7 million euros have been raised, a part of which is a convertible bond. The company will use the funds— which come from the Venture Entrepreneur fund and from Vasgos— to develop in the Italian and Spanish markets and to open new boutiques in Paris. “It’s the last way to engage our community,” says Samuel Guez. “We welcome young people who don’t have bank accounts yet, or who need to smell our products. Today, we have enough online impact to generate traffic to a boutique.”

My Jolie Candle, who have a less than 50% margin on each candle, have started diversifying by launching bath bombs that also contain jewelry. It’s a product that’s particularly compatible with Instagram, “which already represents 15% of our revenue, which will rise to over 10 million euros this year,” rejoices Samuel Guez.

Déborah Loye

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