With the launch of a new name and compensation plan, Neora brings a new aura to the company formerly known as Nerium International.
|Neora (formerly Nerium International)
Headquarters: Addison, Texas
Top Executive: Jeff Olson, Founder and CEO | Deborah Heisz, Co-CEO
Products: Skincare, Personal Care and Wellness
In the beginning, there was Nerium International, founded in 2011 with just one product—Nerium Age-Defying Night Cream. The company name and the product name were both based on oleandrin, an ingredient derived from the Nerium Oleander plant. But after seven years of success and expansion into new product categories and new international markets, the company realized it had outgrown its namesake. It decided to change its name to Neora, which can be translated as New-Aura—or new energy, new light, new era and new edge.
“What’s so exciting about the new name, Neora, is that it means a new era,” says Neora Chief Leadership Officer Renee Olson. “So, it’s perfectly symbolic for us.”
The name Neora shines a brand-new light on the company formerly known as Nerium International. “We as a company feel like this is a new beginning for us,” says Neora Founder and CEO Jeff Olson. “We not only survived as a startup, but we thrived. But we felt like it was time to hit the reset button. We’re going to leverage everything we have learned in the previous seven years and retool ourselves.”
Why New? Why Now?
Why did Nerium International decide to change its name to Neora? The short answer is that the name Nerium was no longer reflective of all that the company has become. “We feel like Neora, as a name, better serves our mission than Nerium as a name did,” says Deborah Heisz, Neora Co-CEO. “The new name provides an umbrella for the whole brand.”
“We feel like Neora, as a name, better serves our mission than Nerium as a name did.”
— Deborah Heisz, Neora Co-CEO
Although the name change may seem sudden to onlookers, the truth is it has been in the works for years. Back in 2013, the company started to realize it would need a new name as it continued to grow. The company’s executives consulted with one of the largest agencies in the United States, and the name Neora was the result of that collaboration.
The name Nerium limited the company in scope, both in terms of its product lines and expansion into international markets. “We have evolved into a multi-vertical skincare line, and the vast majority of our products do not contain Nerium Oleandrin,” says Jeff Olson. “We have also evolved into wellness, which does not and will not ever include that ingredient.”
According to Heisz, Nerium Oleandrin is not in any product launched in the past 5 years, or in any of the international markets.
A Company’s Coming of Age
Truly, this is a company’s coming of age story. As the company evolved, it was apparent that the brand needed to forge that new path says Bo Short, Neora President. “Neora is symbolic of the more comprehensive direction we are taking as a company in our product offerings and global expansion.”
“We’ve grown up quite a bit,” Heisz says. “We’re no longer a single-product company. We are an anti-aging company. Our products range from skincare to nutritionals. We sell a dozen products in over 13 countries around the world.”
The company’s expansion of its product lines—from one skincare product to multiple product categories—was a natural step in its evolutionary growth. “We’ve strategically positioned ourselves to be a leader in holistic anti-aging,” says Neora Chief Sales and Marketing Officer Amber Olson Rourke. “This includes your face, your body, your internal health, mental health, cellular health and gut health—all the different aspects of living your best life and being your best you.”
Alongside the launch of the new company name, Neora will also unveil a new compensation plan. “We believe this is going to be a state-of-the-art compensation plan in the industry because it reflects where the industry is going,” Jeff Olson says.
Heisz says Neora’s compensation plan focuses as much on brand partners growing their customer base as building a business. “It rewards both business builders and customer acquirers in a very powerful and unique way,” Heisz adds.
“These are two huge shifts to make,” Jeff Olson says. “It’s a big, bold move. I’ve never seen it done in the industry. We’re not thinking small, we’re thinking big, and we’re thinking long-term.”
How do Neora’s brand partners feel about the company’s new name and comp plan? To the field, it’s like the best of both worlds Renee Olson says. “They’re so excited about it because it’s new but it’s also familiar at the same time. They see it as the launch of a new company but one that they already know and love.”
What Will Change & Stay the Same
Although launching a new name and comp plan are big steps, Neora intends to preserve the aspects of the company that have landed it where it is today—to keep what works. “All the things that made us are better today,” Jeff Olson says. “We now have a chance to take all those things and re-launch them with a whole new energy.”
What will definitely not change is Neora’s commitment to quality product development. The company considers its focus on R&D a competitive advantage. “Our products are each uniquely custom-formulated to give people real results,” Olson Rourke says. “We handcraft our formulas and source from 15 different partners around the world to create the best products.”
“We’re not thinking small, we’re thinking big, and we’re thinking long-term.”
— Jeff Olson, Neora Founder and CEO
From a marketing standpoint, the company took steps to ensure brand continuity by retaining its signature logo—the capital N with the circle—which will remain the same. “This is a key and iconic element of our brand that partners and customers recognize,” Olson Rourke says. “In terms of our brand recognition, that was something we did very intentionally because we wanted it to still feel like who we are but upgraded and fresh.”
The mission that the company was founded on—make people better—will continue to define its culture, on which Neora prides itself. “Culture is the DNA of any company,” Jeff Olson says. “It attracts who you are and repels who you’re not. It’s done that for us.”
Something else Neora feels it has done well and will not change is its high customer-to-distributor ratio. “We have one of the best customer-to-brand partner ratios I’ve ever seen,” Heisz says. “The vast majority of our sales are to customers who buy our products on an ongoing basis because they see the value both in the price point and the results they get.”
What the company has not fully capitalized on yet is its international footprint, Heisz says. “We are still heavily North American in terms of our sales volume,” she adds. “So, there’s still a lot of opportunity internationally, which we have plans in place to fully capitalize on.”
Leveraging “Not for Resale” Internationally
Neora intends to continue to strategically grow its international presence by offering its products in additional European and Asian markets. “We have a great opportunity to continue to build our international footprint, while also growing our existing markets,” Short says.
But perhaps the most significant benefit of Neora’s new name and compensation plan is its ability to offer the best of both worlds—to change and yet remain the same—to its existing and potential brand partners.
“A potential brand partner can have a first mover advantage without the risk associated with a startup company, but instead with a company that has already demonstrated meteoric success, selling in excess of $1.5 billion in products in seven years,” Short says. “Neora represents a new opportunity and a new beginning, built on a platform of a company with a proven track record.”
Neora’s Mission: Make People Better
Eight years ago, when Neora was founded originally as Nerium, the company’s leaders chose three words as its mission: make people better. Although a lot has changed for Neora over the years, its commitment to making people better shines through everything they do.
“Make people better—that’s our goal, our commitment,” says Jeff Olson, Neora Founder and CEO. “We’ve done that with our products and our opportunity. But we spend the same amount of time helping people be better—whether that’s personal development, our investment in Live Happy, or our commitment to giving back through Big Brothers, Big Sisters.”
Olson says Neora chose to partner with Big Brothers, Big Sisters because it’s a nonprofit with a mission that can be embraced by brand partners in every community and across the globe. “People really want to be a part of a company that makes a difference in the world’s eco-system,” Olson says. “We’ve tried to do that.”