The CEO of Sunnamusk, Kazi Abdur Rahman opens up to our front cover creative director, Kaniz Ali
Interviewed by: Kaniz Ali
Edited by: Nashmia Amir Butt
Grazia: How did the idea of launching Sunnamusk come about?
Abid Kazi: We started off our journey with a very humble start up,capital of £600. Since then we have utilised our resources and along with all the income we made towards building and improving the business. Today, we are a global fragrance brand that has an excellent reputation in perfumery all around the world
Grazia: What inspired you to enter the family business?
Abid Kazi: I have always had a creative and entrepreneurial mindset and had dreamed of running my own brand. So when the opportunity of working with the family came to create a premium fragrance brand, I jumped at it to work with my brothers to create something epic.
Grazia: How many stores has Sunnamusk opened up and where?
Abid Kazi: We have opened 19 Stores to date. We have 17 stores across the UK in key major cities and towns and 2 stores in Germany, and this year we plan to open up Sunnamusk boutiques in Netherlands, Sweden and France as part of our international expansion plan.
Grazia: What products does Sunnamusk sell in stores?
Abid Kazi: We sell a range of fragrance-related products which include fine perfumery, oil based fragrances, home fragrances such as Bakhoor & Candles. We have most recently launched our beauty and care category products which include moisturizers along with hand sanitisers.
Grazia: How have you found your journey so far?
Abid Kazi: The journey has been amazing, with many ups and downs, twists and turns – but I think that is what makes it interesting and fun. I have developed as a person both personally and professionally and have become a much better version of myself through my journey of entrepreneurship as it has allowed me to excel in my creativity in creating scents and the brand.
Grazia: What are your favourite products in Sunnamusk?
Abid Kazi: My two favourite products would be Abid Ambre and Wood De Amber. I love Abid Ambre because it is such a fresh citrusy refreshing fragrance, but it also has a warm woody, sweet and dry mix which makes it such a unique fragrance of its type and this is one of the reasons why it is the top selling fragrance at Sunnamusk.
I also love Wood De Amber because it is the embodiment of a fragrance that you would wear to make a statement or mark when you enter a room. It has a very special feeling and the combination of Woody and Ambery base notes give it a very middle eastern vibe.
Grazia: Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years?
Abid Kazi: I see myself creating two more lifestyle and beauty brands. I see Sunnamusk being a globally recognised fragrance brand.
Grazia: What are your hopes and aspirations for Sunnamusk?
Abid Kazi: I would like Sunnamusk to be a lifestyle brand that is used by perfume lovers all across the globe. We should be recognised within the fragrance industry as a key player in creativity and customer service.
Grazia: What are some pros and cons of being a young entrepreneur?
Abid Kazi: For me personally, I cannot think of any cons of being a young entrepreneur – I think the advantages outweigh any disadvantages there could be as you have more time on your hand, you have less commitments, fresh and creative thinking which can relate to new audiences and the ability to inspire a generation of young people through your achievements.
Grazia: How has being an entrepreneur affected your family life?
Abid Kazi: I think it certainly keeps you very busy and sometimes it can mean that you miss family functions or events. But most families usually understand as they can see how much time and attention a business requires.
Grazia: What motivates you?
Abid Kazi: Being able to give back to the community and help my neighbourhood back home, which is a deprived village in Bangladesh called Kolakuta.
Grazia: How do you generate new ideas?
Abid Kazi: I am constantly travelling so I see new things and manage to immerse myself in different cultures which gives me inspiration to create new content and come up with fresh ideas.
Grazia: How did the name for your company come about?
Abid Kazi: Sunnamusk is an Arabic inspired name which roots from habitual use of fragrance, the brand’s ethos lies in being a British brand based out of London but having middle eastern inspiration which is massively influential in the fragrance world. The term “Oud” is now adopted across all types of perfumery including the world renowned french perfumery.
Grazia: What is your favourite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
Abid Kazi: Being able to execute ideas and strategies which result in achieving goals. Having the flexibility of travelling and networking with different people from all walks of life is definitely what I enjoy.
Grazia: If you were not an entrepreneur what would you be?
Abid Kazi: I think I would either be a social media personality or a lawyer! I love law and how the judicial system works and one of my favourite shows is Suits. One of my strongest skills is creating content and viral videos so I would always look to be involved with the creative side of life and social media.
Grazia: Name 5 things you love to do outside of work?
Abid Kazi: I love driving and absolutely love cars. I love seeing friends and going out to eat and I truly enjoy travelling to new countries, I take part in a lot of charity work with my mother, I help other people with various things from simple things to complicated tasks. I love being able to help others.