Asyraf Khalid, a Malaysian entrepreneur, has gained recognition in the business world for his innovative approach to brand building and partnerships with celebrities. As the Founder and CEO of A Klasse Essentials Shd Bhd, he has successfully established a firm that manufactures items with renowned artists like Tya Athira, Izara Aishah and many more. Prior to this, Asyraf held the position of Director and CEO at SimplySiti, a well-known Malaysian local cosmetics company under Malaysian icon Dato' Siti Nurhaliza.
Early Entrepreneurial Inspiration:
"My father was one of my inspirations," Asyraf reflects on witnessing his father's dedication and success in building enterprises. The transformation in his family's lifestyle fueled Asyraf's interest in business, as he witnessed changes in their home, car, and overall standard of living. His mother also played a role in shaping his entrepreneurial mindset by encouraging him to save money from a young age.
At a young age, Asyraf embarked on his entrepreneurial journey by selling BlackBerry phones on the side while residing in Melbourne. This experience not only brought him initial success but also ignited his passion for business. Reflecting on that time, Asyraf recalls, "I was making five figures per month in Melbourne... though I'm not sure if this counts as a business because it was just me working from home."
Despite limited capital, Asyraf's determination and resourcefulness led him to establish A Klasse. When asked about the idea behind A Klasse and its brands, he explains, "I took the initiative and approached distributors, presenting them with my ideas... and that's how we started."
Asyraf's decision to collaborate with celebrities stems from his astute observation of their career trajectories. "My expertise now lies in helping celebrities establish their brands before they lose their relevance," Asyraf emphasizes. He noticed that some celebrities fail to plan for their future, which prompted him to ask, "Why not help them build their own brand and maintain their relevance?" This strategic approach benefits both the celebrities and A Klasse, creating a win-win situation where the business minimizes marketing expenses while the celebrities establish their own business brand.
Asyraf openly acknowledges the challenges he encountered along his entrepreneurial path. Initially, he only had to manage a small team, but as his workforce grew, he noted the challenge of managing a larger staff. He also emphasizes the importance of adapting to the rapidly changing corporate environment. "Businesses will inevitably miss out if they fail to adapt," Asyraf asserts. He highlights the need to stay updated with evolving marketing methods and technological changes, citing the shift from traditional billboards and radio ads to social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok.
Asyraf's current primary focus is on the growth and stability of Mutyara, one of A Klasse's core brands. He aims to secure continuous growth and consistent cash flow for the company. Looking ahead, he recognizes the value in exploring new markets and targeting specialized audiences through collaborations with other celebrities. "Each celebrity has their own market," Asyraf explains, using Tya Arifin as an example. He has already identified potential collaborations with celebrities as he expands his commercial activities.
Lessons Learned and Advice for Young Entrepreneurs:
With valuable insights and lessons gained through his entrepreneurial experiences, he stresses the importance of financial management and caution during both prosperous and challenging times.
"Metaphorically speaking, in business it’s not always going to pour everyday, sometimes there will be droughts, hence it’s very important for us to take advantage of the seasons when it pours" he said.
He urges entrepreneurs to exercise extreme caution and prudence in managing their finances. He also emphasizes the significance of acquiring specialized knowledge and conducting thorough research before entering the corporate world, likening it to seeking a doctor without a medical degree.
Additionally, Asyraf advises young entrepreneurs to cultivate humility and actively network with others. He encourages them to be friendly and open to interactions, putting aside any excuses as it presents opportunities for personal growth and mutually beneficial collaborations.
Asyraf's entrepreneurial journey showcases his determination, resourcefulness, and strategic thinking. He has not only established a business that supports celebrities but also provides financial security from brand building through A Klasse Essentials.
His collaborations and emphasis on adaptation underscore his ability to stay ahead of the curve in the ever-changing corporate landscape. Asyraf's attention to financial management and his belief in the power of networking serve as invaluable lessons for aspiring entrepreneurs.
As he continues to expand his companies and explore new markets, Asyraf Khalid remains a formidable presence in the entrepreneurial world, driven by his unique approach and commitment to empowering both celebrities and his own firm.