Q: FenuHealth seems to be winning awards regularly, most recently The Irish Times Innovation Award. How did that come about?
A: The aim of The Irish Times Innovation Awards is to showcase and reward excellence in innovation. FenuHealth secured a €10,000 media package with support and mentoring from Abbvie, Teagasc, Science Foundation Ireland, Enterprise Ireland, KPMG, and UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School. This follows on from winning the Dell Internship Bursary, the People’s Choice Awards, the All-Ireland Business Summit Award, the Griffith College Enterprise Cup, the Dublin LEO Enterprise Award as well being prize winners and finalists at the BT Young Scientist and Technology Exhibition for four years.
Q: How has business been in 2017?
A: FenuSave costs as little as 70c a day. This has led to phenomenal growth in 2017. Winning new customers is one thing, maintaining them is more important and we have a 92% re-order rate. We had several Group/Grade 1 winners this year.
Our business is expanding as we are getting more and more referral business from trainers that are customers. We never disclose who our customers are, without them first doing so as did Joseph O’Brien after winning the Melbourne Cup.
We were invited to meet with Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall on two occasions during 2017 and this opened up the UK market to us.
Q: What products are proving most popular and why?
A: Our most popular product is FenuSave which is 100% natural and is categorised as a feedstuff, meaning it can be fed to a racehorse right up to, and on, the day of a race. A tablespoon of this powder is simply sprinkled over a horse’s normal hard feed over the course of the day and is divided over each feed – little but often gives the best results
Q: How does FenuSave work?
FenuSave reduces the amount of acid being produced, reduces the level of acidity, forms a protective layer on the stomach and slows down the emptying of the stomach which can lead to increased absorption of nutrients from the intestine. Many trainers have reported an increase in weight/muscle while continuing to feed the same weight of hard feed. Such reports have been received from trainers who weight their horses frequently and observed the difference when they first introduced a selection of their horses to FenuSave.
Q: Your brand is well-known in racing. Are you active in the sport horse or breeding market?
A: We have a strong share of the German leisure market with own-brand packaging. We have been concentrating on racing yards in Ireland and the UK as these tend to have the largest number of horses. Earlier this year we introduced FenuFoal and 16% of all foals presented for sale in the past few weeks. Many international show jumpers are customers and our products were fed at the Rio Olympics. It is important to say that safety in pregnant or lactating mares has not been determined.
Q: What are biggest challenges facing the company right now?
A: Without doubt, our biggest challenge is finding the best people to recruit and join our successful team which consists of eight based in Ireland, Germany and the Middle East. We are looking for at least five extra people to help us grow our market share in England, and France and across Europe. We also want to appoint a General Manager to head up FenuHealth as we are both in full-time education. If you are interested or you know of the right person, please contact us!