Finding right partners key to entering US market, Canadian distributor says

By Hank Schultz contact

- Last updated on GMT

Finding right partners key to entering US market, Canadian distributor says

Related tags: Marketing

Branded ingredient distributor CK Nutraceuticals, up to now a Canadian market specialist, is leveraging a deal with a direct response marketing company to expand into the US market.

CK Nutraceuticals will supply a condition specific ingredient to Ideal Living, a company that sells a wide variety of consumer products via the direct response television channel, otherwise known as infomercials. The company also places products on retail shelves. CK Nutraceuticals president Michael Chernyak said he couldn’t be more specific about the ingredient, as the selling campaign was still being put together.

Direct TV marketing leader

Ideal Living, based in Sherman Oaks, CA, sells a wide variety of dietary supplements under the Thera Botanics brand name. The products categories include men’s and women’s health, energy, cognitive support, sleep support and digestive health products. Ideal Living claims that since its inception 1993 it has been responsible for the sales of more than $3 billion worldwide. Chernyak said the partnership will help broaden CK’s reach in the United States.

“We started in Canada quite a few years ago and have been quietly successful in this market,” Chernyak told NutraIngredients-USA.  Canada has special requirements for dietary ingredients and finished dietary supplements, including the need to file for a Natural Product Number, or NPN.  Chernyak said his company had done a good business helping outsiders gain access to the market.

Wed work with companies that wanted to do business in Canada but didnt have the expertise in this market.  For a long time as a result we were territorially bound with some of our ingredients to this market,​ Chernyak said.

Suite of branded ingredients

Now that the company has an entree to the market with its Ideal Living partnership, Chernyak said the company is building demand for its branded ingredients, which include KitoMax, a patent-pending chitosan oligosaccharide with blood glucose control benefits, EstroG-100, a South Korean menopause ingredient that is a proprietary combination of three botanical extracts and Deep Ocean Minerals, a mineral complex manufactured by a Taiwanese company.

We thought Deep Ocean Minerals is innovative and on trend,​ Chernyak said.  In addition to its trendiness, Chernyak pointed to a recent science backing the ingredient including a study pointing to its boosting of post exercise blood flow and its anti-inflammatory benefits​.

We are a young company in the US and dont have as much of track record here as in Canada.  We are engaged in trying to capture mind sharein the market and prove ourselves as someone who is an innovator within the industry,​ Chernyak said.

Growing in the market with the right partners

One of the key parts of that process is to choose the right partners, he said.  All to often, brand holders might seek to use the eagerness of a new supplier to their own advantage.

We look at things on a case by case basis.  We have had companies ask us if there is an opportunity for certain exclusives in certain marketing channels for our ingredients.  We have to judge speed to market, minimum volumes and very clear definitions of those channels,​ Chernyak said. Learning to set those boundaries came at some cost, he said.

We had it happen once in Canada that we signed an agreement for an ingredient for a year.  Our client committed to volumes they had no intention of meeting but it gave them a head start in the market.  We have to identify the right kind of partner, a significant player in the in the industry willing to get behind an ingredient and give it the support it needs to be successful,​ he said.


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