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Founder of JR Life Sciences, Mr Ricky Ong

When it comes to health supplements, there are few brands as prominent as Holistic Way – just visit your local Guardian, Watsons, or Unity to see the vitamins and supplements section stocked full of the brand’s various products. But while the quality of these supplements is a large reason for its success, it is the vision of the brand’s importer-distributor company, JR Life Sciences, that ensures it continues to be a leader in the health supplements market.

JR Life Sciences has been in the business of importing and distributing health supplements since 2007. Founded by Mr Ricky Ong, a veteran of the industry with over 30 years of experience under his belt, JR offers an extensive range of Holistic Way vitamins as well as its own supplements under the JR Life Sciences name. Vision Media speaks to Ricky to find out more about his eminent company.

Ricky started working in the health supplements industry at one of the top distributors in the country. He spent decades flourishing at the company and eventually rose through the ranks to become the regional country manager. But when the company was later sold, its new owners looked to bring in their own people in place of the existing management. Ricky, much to his dismay, found himself on the chopping block.

“It was out of the blue,” recalls Ricky. “After losing my job like that, I contemplated for the next six months on what to do next. Eventually, I decided to go with what I knew best – the health supplements business. That was when I started JR Life Sciences.”

JR started with a small team of five and a promising brand that was offered to Ricky by one of his former suppliers. And though things were not always plain sailing – there were early issues with aberrant employees who did not follow the Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) – Ricky and his team’s hard work and steady vision quickly paid off as the business grew exponentially. JR now has a large team handling the many facets of the company’s business, ensuring that the whole operation runs in a seamless and efficient manner befitting of its status as a market leader.

While the size of the company has grown by leaps and bounds, Ricky places emphasis on cultivating an inclusive and tight-knit working environment for all his employees to thrive. He treats them like his family, even going so far as to lend them financial assistance in times of need. “I strove to create an environment not only for my workers to excel, but also for them to be happy and satisfied with what they are doing,” says Ricky. “It is important that they feel appreciated for what they do.”

Since cultivating strong relationships is a core belief within the company, Ricky extends this to his clients. Whether they are suppliers or customers, JR respects them as business partners and makes them feel valued for all their efforts, thus building a strong rapport with them. For instance, suppliers would receive thank-you cards every quarter, and customers (retailers like Guardian, Watsons and Unity are worked with very closely and would have most of their requests seen to. Consumers who buy JR’s supplements directly from platforms like its e-commerce website can return products they are unsatisfied with – no questions asked.

Having good service is important for most companies, but for a health supplements business like JR, having top-quality products is the criteria by which they are judged. With many efficacious products serving a wide target audience, JR undoubtedly meets and exceed this criterion. The various supplements across the Holistic Way range covers the many nutritional needs of adults, seniors and children alike. And for those who are looking for a more economical product, supplements in the JR Life Sciences range offer significant savings for products while still maintaining JR’s high quality standards.

Despite its excellence, however, JR is continually looking for ways to improve and grow as a company. Its research and development team are always developing better and more innovative products to add to its already extensive product range, and the company are always exploring new ways to reach new audiences. Holistic Way’s website is a good example of this: while e-commerce function is its main function, allowing consumers to buy the supplements online, the website began to feature health-related articles to drive traffic to it. These articles are written by JR’s own nutritionist and are a reliable source of health tips and advice.

Never one to rest on his laurels, Ricky continues to look above and beyond and envisions JR as a true powerhouse in the region in five years. “We hope to have a presence in regional markets like Malaysia, Vietnam and China,” says Ricky. “But my eyes are set on further beyond too. I want to make JR Life Sciences and Holistic Way an internationally recognised brand.”

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