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CRM System Transformations

Navigating Skincare Innovation: Kinvara's Journey with Integration Kings

Before Integration Kings

  • Kinvara Skincare has grown from a small brand sold at farmer’s markets to an award-winning name – but a lack of system integration kept the blinders on the business.
  • Their previous CRM solutions took too much manual time.
  • Before Integration Kings, Kinvara’s reporting was clumsy – and that prevented better business decisions and growth.

Top priorities for the transformation

  • Enhance efficiency and business support: Kinvara aimed to leverage integration services to improve operational efficiency and support business functions effectively.
  • Improve system cohesion and eliminate challenges arising from disjointed systems by establishing a more cohesive and integrated approach to data and processes.
  • Improve reporting for better accounting, stock take and resource management in real time, dealing with multiple stock locations and supplier contracts.

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Kinvara's story

In need of a flawless ERP solution, Kinvara Skincare turned to Integration Kings to enhance the beauty brand’s efficiency and global allure.

With the international skincare market worth around $140 billion USD, there’s huge potential for developing better products to meet our skin’s changing needs. One brand that has captured the essence of effective skincare is Kinvara.

Originating from the seaside village of the same name in County Galway, Ireland, Kinvara has gone from a small brand sold at farmer’s markets to an award-winning international brand in just a few short years. They exploded onto the scene in 2016 when their revolutionary skincare line earned accolades at the International Beauty Awards, disrupting the long-standing dominance of European and Asian beauty brands.

This enviable growth also meant that Kinvara were outgrowing their old systems – so they needed expert advice and guidance on implementing a new system with Integration Kings.

Smoothing out the bumps

It’s a common enough challenge: Kinvara Skincare found itself at a juncture where its existing software systems could no longer keep pace with the company’s evolving needs and ambitions.

Our story begins in 2017, when Kinvara’s accountant Richie Lennon reached out to Robert King, cloud systems integration specialist at Integration Kings, to look at where Kinvara could implement processes and cloud-based systems that work harmoniously.

As Robert explains, “At the time, Kinvara had Xero, and Shopify for selling to customers, plus they’d been trialing TradeGecko a bit too. They had 3PL in place, and a fair bit of manufacturing requirements as well including outsourcing manufacturing. Richie was really progressive, and said ‘Hey, can you help out Kinvara?’ He’s been well ahead of the game, in that respect.”

For a company like Kinvara, smooth operations from wholesale suppliers through to the end customer is vital for ensuring that they can deliver high quality products to 700+ stores in Ireland alone.

“So, we got to work with a review and health check, and that revealed some massive integration workflow issues between 3PLs, front-end sales channels, and their various platforms, as well as some big manufacturing needs.”

The goal was to shift away from awkward, manual-heavy processes – something familiar to many SMEs – and bring together Kinvara’s diverse systems in a way that would free up the team’s time and provide far better clarity on back-end processes.

Working across time zones, Integrations Kings soon rolled out Help Scout for customer communication and care integrated into Shopify and email boxes, and Capture CRM for wholesale accounts.

Since then, Kinvara has seen dramatic improvements in their operations, and the relationship with Integration Kings has only grown.

Managing ongoing operations

Between global pandemics and a changing skincare landscape, Kinvara’s been put through their paces over the last few years – not least of all with respect to demand planning and new faces in the team.

This is something Anna Cairns has seen first-hand. Anna’s worn many hats for the organization, but it’s as Operations Manager that she’s been behind some of the latest changes to Kinvara’s business and helped them reach as many markets as possible.

Anna Cairns, Operations Manager, Kinvara Skincare

Anna came to Kinvara after the implementation of their new software stack had already begun. “It was heavily systemized,” she explains, “but not championed internally.”

While Anna has her qualifications in business information systems, this was all new. “When I joined, we had Cin7 Core (formerly known as DEAR Systems) in place, and I’d never worked with them before. One of the accountants gave me a brief overview and then left the business – so that left me in charge of the systems and not knowing how it was running the business.”

Fortunately, Kinvara and Integration Kings had a great relationship, and they were able to work together to get Anna up to speed and help her become an internal champion for the system. That way, she could share the information with the rest of the team and ensure their systems were working to their fullest potential.

“Integration Kings gave me an introduction to that, pointed me in the right direction, gave me an overview as to how it worked, how it supported the business. It helps that I’m interested in inventory management and like it more than a lot of people, I think!”

The early days involved lots of retraining on Cin7 Core, Shopify, and sales channels – and as they’ve grown and entered new markets, they’ve added new sales channels, and more automations, making sure that they’re all configured correctly.

Wrestling with changing demand

Anna joined in late 2020, when Covid was in full swing around the world. So, she had to learn a new system and deal with serious supply chain challenges and procurement issues at the same time. With lead times extending to six months or more, supply planning became a major focus of Anna and Integration Kings’ work during those days.

Robert explains that demand planning is a vital part of business operations today – especially when international forces can introduce unexpected volatility.

“The demand planning tool literally analyzes the data daily,” he says. “The system can suggest you slow down your buying or pick up a new supplier. So, it can tell you the market's slowing down so you shouldn’t over-order or reduce your progressive modelling.”

“A lot of businesses don't have that tech in their businesses; they just do it on gut instinct, and then end up in a situation where they progressively overboard, quite substantially. And then you end up with this product as sitting in a warehouse, just rotting in there. And I have seen that alcohol clients, where we walk in and there's an entire rack of dead product lines that just was done on gut feel.”

This is difficult to do with a complex business operation like Kinvara, which deals with multiple suppliers, countries, and stock centers, in addition to the red tape of moving product across borders.

However their new stack of solutions, including Cin7 Core and B2B portal, the improved Shopify backend and integrations, Amazon integrations, Help Scout, and Capsule CRM for managing supplier relationships have offered unparalleled clarity for Kinvara.

Anna explains, “Every one of them is needed to make all the team’s day easier. It would be a lot more manual work, you know, a lot more time-consuming for the team to do jobs that they would have to do if they weren't supported. But once the setup is done the integrations are there and the support you get from Integration Kings to get those systems to where they need to be to just plug and play.”

The result is incredibly clean data, that’s making Kinvara more streamlined and their work effortless – and that’s meant better decision making for the company, especially during a difficult few years of business.

“We haven’t had an out-of-stock incident since 2020, and that’s quite impressive considering Covid, the supply chain, everything. The system has allowed us to make those decisions quicker, in a more timely manner – so having that done protects us, and our sales. Plus, we’re saving probably six, ten hours a week per staff member, because they’re not manually entering stuff or having to check that information captured in one system is in another area.”

“Given inflation, all our focus is on cost control at the moment. Our system lets us plug in figures, see each potential scenario, and keep our margin with rising costs. But having the system saves us in terms of cost as well, because we just have the information available to us in real time. So, we're able to be quite proactive around managing those stresses on the business rather than looking for stuff manually.”

Kinvara have been very progressive in understanding their need to empower their people with the right systems – and they’ve really succeeded as a result.

A clearer, brighter future

Following the successful implementation of the new ERP solution, Kinvara Skincare is poised for significant growth and innovation, with more valuable time on their hands.

“A lot of this change is about streamlining to make things easier, and so the team can focus on creative elements or new idea generation. They’re not stuck in a piece of paperwork that can be done by a system – and that’s what Integration Kings have allowed. We can work on the creative elements that actually drive the business forward,” says Anna.

Anna adds that the sense of trust they now have in their systems has given the team a sense of relief too. “We know the stock is there, the invoice is in, the account system's correct, and we can focus on our next growth area. We know the data is clean and looked after; there’s trust in the system. And that means we can look at the next quarter.”

Anna Cairns, Operations Manager, Kinvara Skincare

With a great relationship in place between Integration Kings and Kinvara, both Robert and Anna are looking forward to future growth working together.

“If you do invest and you do go for implementation of a system stack in your business, having a really strong partner that you can build trust with is a huge part of that,” says Anna.

“Anna's done a fantastic job since she started and has really driven the latest successes for Kinvara,” adds Robert. “It’s incredible to be thought of as partners in their business, but that’s what it is when we have such a strong relationship.”

More Cohesive
Data & Processes

Results of implementing Cin7 Core with Integration Kings

  • Create cohesion and clarity in Kinvara’s diverse operational landscape.
  • Twenty-five percent more time back for each team member to invest in strategic pursuits.
  • Improved reporting for better accounting, stock take and resource management.

Overview of the new
fully-integrated system

Software advantages

  • Cin7 Core
    Cin7 Core is a hub and source of truth for Kinvara Skincare’s inventory operations. It’s been set up to allow multi-currency structures for different regions
  • Cin7 B2B portal
    The Cin7 B2B Portal provides an easy way for Kinvara to sell wholesale to other businesses
  • Shopify backend and integration
    Shopify provides the backend for Kinvara’s ecommerce sales and, thanks to Integration Kings, integrates tightly with Cin7 Core and the rest of their software stack
  • Amazon integration
    Kinvara’s Amazon integration gives them access to the world’s largest marketplace
  • Multi-currency structures for different regions
  • Help Scout for customer communication and customer care
    Help Scout helps Kinvara with customer communication and customer care
  • Capsule CRM
    Capsule CRM allows Kinvara to manage contacts, sales and grow lasting relationships.
  • Xero integrations
    Xero, a world-leading cloud accounting software, integrates tightly with the rest of the software stack enabling Kinvara to stay compliant and access actionable accounting data
  • Inventory Planner
    In conjunction with the rest of Kinvara’s best-of-breed software stack, Inventory Planner gives the company crystal-clear, consolidated insights on everything inventory

The major contributors to
project's success

Anna Cairns
Anna Cairns Operations Manager, Kinvara Skincare

Operations Manager, Kinvara Skincare Anna Cairns

  • Operations Manager and champion of Kinvara’s new CRM stack
  • Worked tirelessly with Integration Kings to see the success of their solution.
  • Uses reports and data from Cin7 Core to drive efficiency across the Kinvara brand worldwide.

“Having that stock and that system feeding out all the others from its support and sales perspective is crucial, and it’s all thanks to Integration Kings.”

Areas of contribution

  • Operations Manager and champion of Kinvara’s new CRM stack
  • Worked tirelessly with Integration Kings to see the success of their solution.
  • Uses reports and data from Cin7 Core to drive efficiency across the Kinvara brand worldwide.
Robert King
Robert King Co-Founder and Cloud Integrator, Integration Kings

Co-Founder and Cloud Integrator, Integration Kings Robert King

  • Certified Accountant, cloud integration specialist, seasoned consultant, and nut butter fan
  • Led the transformation of Kinvara’s systems since 2017.
  • Continues to serve as a trusted advisor and support for Kinvara, helping the company optimize its systems to meet changing demands.

“Look at the data, and you can see that more businesses need to head toward digitization and cloud-based solutions. And if you’re not progressively heading there, you’ll be left behind.”

Areas of contribution

  • Certified Accountant, seasoned consultant, and expert in cloud integration
  • Led the transformation of Kinvara’s systems since 2017.
  • Continues to serve as a trusted advisor and support for Kinvara, helping the company optimize its systems to meet changing demands.

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