Job Mumia is the co-founder of Asili Oils, who have specialized in extraction of oils from plants, herbs and gum.
Once extracted, the oils can be used for cosmetic and pharmaceutical purposes, as well as personal use.
This means that the oils can be used in among others, massages and used in cosmetic and pharmaceutical products as additives.
Here is his story as told by WoK.
In an interview with Utmost Precision, Mumia explained that he began oils extraction while a student at the University of Nairobi.
He pursued Bachelor of Science in Chemistry.
“We had learnt about creating processes, doing laboratory work and analytical work, that’s when I started this journey,” he said.
Mumia explained that he decided to venture into the business due to the unavailability of essential oils in Kenya.
“We realized that the country imports around 70,000 tonnes of essential oils annually. We had to come up with a way of limiting the imbalance of trade yet we have the raw materials,” he said.
He added that the high rate of unemployment in Kenya was a contributing factor to the establishment of the business.
“We thought we could do this to raise revenue for ourselves and create employment for others,” Mumia said.
He also attributed the establishment of the company to the fact that there has never been a successful entrepreneur in their family.
“I took it as a challenge for me to start this venture and see if we can have at least one successful entrepreneur in the family,” he noted.
At Asili Essential Oils, Mumia and his team deal in extraction of essential oils from different species of plants and herbs.
They also lease their equipment to individuals and businesses who would like to extract essential oils from materials.
“Currently the herbs that we extract essential oils from include lemon grass, thyme, peppermint and trees like eucalyptus and cypress among others,” he said.
Mumia explained that they use steam distillation to extract the oils; here they generate steam from water which is then used to extract the oils from the materials.
“We chose to use steam distillation because it doe not interfere with the chemical nature of the essential oils. The oils comes in pure form
“The process is also pretty simple as compared to others since we don’t need much capital for us to initiate the process,” he said.
Mumia noted that their marketing strategy was B2B interactions where they sell their products to businesses that use the essential oils as raw materials.
“We are also trying to do B2C in which we can be selling essential oils in small batches to local consumers for personal use,” he said.