Khan El Saboun, a 600-year-old Lebanese family business trading in organic soaps, targets China as an important market and seeks a bigger share of it.

The Lebanese soap maker has been exporting to Chinese mainland for the past four years. Now it plans to enter Hong Kong’s skin care products market this year.

Amir Hassoun, owner of Khan El Saboun, says he has a chance to enter Hong Kong’s market through a businesswoman at the second China International Import Expo in Shanghai last year.

“I was lucky enough to meet this lady who tried my products and loved them so she bought a quantity and distributed them among her friends and clients. She received a great feedback so she decided to buy a container to use them at her spa and sell them to her clients,” Hassoun told Xinhua in an interview.

Khan El Saboun has been exporting to China at an average of five to six shipments per year valued between 50,000 U.S. dollars and 75,000 U.S. dollars each.

“We are expecting growth in our export to China by 35 percent next year,” Hassoun said.

Khan El Saboun is specialized in soap making in various forms from aromatic and therapeutic soaps to essential oils, creams, and skin care products, all made naturally.

“Our products are made from ingredients that can be eaten,” Hassoun explained.

Hassoun noted that China is the most important foreign market for his business partly because the Chinese people value the organic products and natural ingredients.

The COVID-19 outbreak worldwide did not prevent Hassoun from exporting his products as some markets continued to import products.

“We continued sending shipments by sea which is way cheaper so we will be adopting this route instead of the air transport from now on,” he said.

While thousands of businesses could not sustain the economic and financial crisis prevailing in Lebanon and were forced to lay off thousands of employees in the past few months, Khan El Saboun still provides jobs for 250 workers.

“We have women who work on artistic products that are carved and wrapped by hands. We are keen to work on women empowerment to improve the social situation of our community in Koura, north of Lebanon,” he said.

Khan El Saboun’s business also includes a 30,000-square-meter Eco-village dedicated to organic plantations of medicinal plants used in the production of oils and soaps.

The Eco-village also has one of the biggest soap museums in the world that includes 1,400 different types of soaps and relevant products, and shows visitors the distillation and soap production process.

Hassoun is looking forward to taking part in the third China International Import Expo that will be held in November in Shanghai.

“It is an occasion we wait for every year,” he said. Enditem


Source: Xinhua| 2020-06-10 16:35:30|Editor: huaxia


by Dana Halawi