You can’t always nail the perfect business in a single day—oftentimes, it takes clawing through years of hard work, countless sacrifices, and a strong attitude before you can establish your brand not only on the local stage, but in a more competitive global arena.
The couple, Ferdie Opena and AJ Opena came from ordinary beginnings as corporate warriors, embroiled in the long grind of the hectic fields of sales and marketing. This work background from multinational companies, coupled with their experience as parents to two lovely children, taught them the value of having a vision, perseverance, determination, and grit—crucial traits that would later help them as they finally navigated into the world of entrepreneurship. Their knowledge of how the business world works may have indeed been the runway for their entrepreneurial dreams, but it was these virtues they learned on the field that served as the fuel for them to finally take off and become the owners of their now extremely successful nails spa venture.
The seeds that would later developed into Nails Dot Glow were sown in 2009, when AJ was availing of nail services at a nail spa near her area of assignment. Though such were routine for her, it had always bothered her how quality body care services had to be so prohibitively expensive and yet the services of the staff are way off the mark. If you wanted to take good care of your nails, you first would need to fork over insane amounts of money that could take a pretty big bite out of your budget and still experienced bad customer service from the attending staff. Ever the imaginative thinker, AJ raised the most important question: “Why?” Why do people have to dig deep into their pockets for excellent nail care? Why did it have to be so costly to look good and feel good? Why little amount of training is being provided for the frontliners of the nail salon? And so the engines were primed, the fuse was lit, so to speak, and thus arose the idea of Nails Dot Glow. The able support of his husband Ferdie, opened the floodgates of entrepreneurial journey for the couple.
The vision for Nails Dot Glow is simple but highly appealing: a chain of salons that promotes total self care rivalling or even surpassing those of “premium” salons, but without the exorbitant prices charged there. Offering an impressive range of services from nail care to body massage to facial treatments, it stands above its competition even without needing you to break the bank. In a way, it’s a more “maka-masa” option that Pinoys from every walk of life would appreciate. After all, everyone deserves to feel and look their best—and this was the long-awaited answer to that. And what an answer it was!
Still, despite all this, it was not a perfectly smooth transition into this type of business for the couple. After all, running your own venture is a wholly different beast from simply being an employees. When starting from scratch, you have to be aware of the need to grow your brand recognition from scratch while maintaining competitive prices and services. You have to take care of managing the administrative side of the business, supervising training of new staff, marketing and eventually opportunities for expansion and scale up. A herculean task for anyone, surely, but it is bitter work that yields the sweetest fruits. In this case, the couple’s willingness to go the extra mile and truck on despite adversity came in clutch for them. By committing to their company vision of delivering nothing but the best top of class service to their clientele, they were able to make a name for themselves and build the foundations for the now well-renowned nails salon. Though quite an ambitious leap into the waters of entrepreneurship that were heretofore unknown to our business-minded power couple, this risk they took paid off handsomely as, in the next decade, Nails Dot Glow took off like a rocket and has never stopped growing since.
In its first ten years, what began as the idea of these two corporate warriors grew and burgeoned into a massive franchise that as we speak still keeps blooming and developing into a bigger brand that everyone knows and loves. From a single branch in Pag-asa, Quezon City, this once-small salon has successfully branched out into almost a hundred of franchises throughout the country, providing top-notch nails and body care not easily matched elsewhere. Its portfolio of nails and body care services in a pastel shabby chic interior designs of stores is such a pampering haven to their brand conscious based of customers.
These tenets, needless to say, are what guide NDG in its quest to give its customers the ultimate pampering experience there is. The prices are so reasonable for even those on a tighter budget, but you get services surpassing other costlier salons and product lines for each cent you spend. NDG has an impressive array of treatments fit for all types of customers in the B and broad C market that assure holistic self care and leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. The company also provides in-house training for all its staff through its own Training Academy, assuring that wherever branch you go, you can receive the same equal level and value of care. In fact, the Philippine Franchise Association and the Department of Trade and Industry have conferred the award to NDG as the Most Promising Filipino Brand in 2017. It speaks highly of where the company is now and where is it going.
Since NDG is into franchising for more than a decade now, the company has built a solid ground in supporting equal minded entrepreneurs to start their business and be their own boss. With this level of commitment to customer satisfaction and successful business model, it is no wonder that NDG came to be known not only in the Philippines, but in the international community with the opening of the company’s first-ever Master Franchise Operation in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, owned by an Arab franchisees employing all Filipina workers to banner the NDG brand of service.
If that is not enough, you do not need to take our word for it. It is not only the ordinary people who sing the greatest praises of the brand and its offerings, but even known female celebrities who are household names in the beauty and showbiz industries here in the Philippines. The likes of Ms. Liza Soberano (past), Ms. Nadine Lustre (current), and Ms. Alex Gonzaga (current) have all tried and tested the famous NDG glowing experience and became instant advocates of the brand. Nadine and Alex own and supervise their own branches of NDG located here in Manila.
NDG is a classic success story- a leap of faith. It is what happens when two brave souls stumble upon an idea, and instead of throwing it away as a passing thought actually sets their mind on it and works from the ground up until that dream finally becomes reality. The owners are very focused on their North Star, not just in realizing their own dreams but also the aspirations of the people who work for them. It was an ore of an idea discovered by mere happenstance on what was an ordinary day, but we all know that ores are just as good as any other lump of common rock if the discoverer doesn’t put in the effort to hone it, temper it, and mold it into a shining gem. It was a diamond in the rough that, over years of hard work and enduring zeal, was polished into a brilliant jewel that still continues to shine after ten long years. Not everyone could accomplish this, but because of faith and persistence, Ferdie and AJ were able to achieve it with nothing less than flying colors. Now, NDG has become a brand recognizable everywhere in the beauty and wellness scene, and its hundreds of branches and offshore presence are incontestable proofs of its success.
The company, with its decade’s worth of unparalleled service and commitment, nurturing relationships more than profits, is a testament to so much hard work, mentorship, humility and sacrifice poured into realizing a goal. They are the living proof to any business-minded person out there that success is only a matter of attitude and grit and never ever stop learning. They are testament that good things don’t only come for those who wait, but only those who actually put in the work and actively pursue the realization of their dreams. They are a shining rebuttal against those who give up on ideas, thinking their ambitions too grand to be reached. As for NDG, you’ve simply got to hand it to them, it’s no mean feat to go toe to toe with the giants in the nail and body care industry, while nailing the balance between quality and excellent service.