Down Under Enterprises, based in NSW, specialises in the farming, production, export, and distribution of a wide range of wholesale natural Australian essential oils, carrier oils, and other ingredients for the global personal care market.
Founded in 2001 to export Australian tea tree oil, Down Under now exports and distributes a wide range of oils including eucalyptus, sandalwood and lavender.
All are pure oils and native to Australia, with the tea tree oil being supplied primarily from the company’s family-owned plantations in Australia.
Down Under exports its full range of products across Asia and to the United States, where it has distribution facilities in Cleveland, Ohio.
“We then distribute these oils to four types of customers,” says Dee-Ann Prather, Managing Director, Down Under Enterprises, “which are natural product, aromatherapy, private label manufacturers and multi-nationals in the US, Canada, Brazil and across Asia.”
“Right now, our major export market is the US, with roughly 92% of our business. Then another 6% goes to Asia, which is quite a small market but is growing rapidly.”
Continued export growth
Along with a number of long-term contracts with US customers for tea tree oil, Down Under has also seen export success with an Australian sandalwood seed oil product.
We were previously able to help Down Under with the finance it needed to fulfil ongoing customer contracts and meet orders for this new product.
“When the growers in our industry wanted to be paid up front, rather than on consignment,” says Dee-Ann, “Efic’s export contract loan helped us to fund these payments. This also freed up cashflow to launch our new sandalwood product.”
A helping hand
As Down Under continues to grow, so do its customers and the size of their orders.
“Our business has been growing for fifteen years,” says Dee-Ann, “and most of our customers have been with us for over ten years."
“They have been growing too, and their contracts are now significant.”
Down Under needed additional funding to have further inventory ready in its warehouse, however its bank was unable to provide the support needed. Efic was able to provide an Export Working Capital Guarantee, which allowed Down Under’s bank to approve the finance that was required.
“Efic’s working capital guarantee facility allowed us to buy more inventory and have it available in our US warehouse, ready for our customers.”
“Efic’s financing has had a huge impact on our business,” adds Dee-Ann, “as the year in which we received it, our business went up by 91 percent.”
“We were also able to employ four new people to help support this overseas growth.”
“Efic has been amazing to worth with,” says Dee-Ann. “It worked extremely well with our bank and was very proactive, which made things very easy for me.”
“Without Efic’s support from the start, our business would probably have grown at a moderate pace, but the extra funding has allowed us to take our business to new heights.”