The history of Vianda is a bit unorthodox. The company began its operations in the early 2000’s under the name of Berkeley Premium Nutraceuticals (BPN). In the early years of existence, BPN enjoyed extremely rapid growth, sales expansion, and multiple new product launches. The company grew to a team of over 1,400 employees within the first few years.
Those were the days of the Smiling Bob advertising campaigns, which were seen all over television. These quirky ads, led by the guy who never spoke a word, but had a big smile on his face and lots of inuendo, represented what still is the company’s flagship brand: Enzyte - The Once Daily Capsule for Natural Male Enhancement. The company’s three most well-known brands were launched in these early years and include: Enzyte for Natural Male Enhancement, Ogoplex for Prostate Health, and Avlimil for Hormonal Balance and Menopausal Support. These brands continue to be marketed today and have an extremely strong customer following.
As with any new company, with tremendous growth also comes tremendous growing pains. The team in place at the time had a hard time staying on top of things. Accountability, accurate record keeping, and integrity were generally not the highest priorities for much of the management team at BPN. While many worked hard to put new controls and updated processes and procedures in place to shore up the company’s control over its assets and its records, poor management and insufficient oversight ultimately forced the company to declare bankruptcy in 2008. In 2008, the landlord purchased the company. It was at this point that the company’s name was changed to Pristine Bay, LLC, with the d/b/a name of Vianda | Advancing Wellness for Life.
The new owner’s goal was simply to restore profitability, and then quickly resell the company for a large profit. The fact that the company was acquired near the start of the great recession when general economic conditions were the poorest that the company had ever faced, did not help him to achieve that goal. Unfortunately, the situation continued to get worse because the new ownership knew almost nothing about the natural supplements industry and the regulations under which it is governed and the CEO and consultants that were hired did not either. Ownership’s response was to keep making radical changes to policies and personnel in an attempt to find a formula that would return the company to huge profitability and reverse the decline in revenues. Unfortunately, the company suffered massive layoffs, restructurings, and turnover during this period.
Cheryl J. had joined the company as Controller in March of 2004. She immediately began learning as much as she could about the natural supplements industry. Cheryl was still employed by BPN in 2008 when its landlord purchased the company out of bankruptcy. Throughout everything, Cheryl continued to make recommendations to the ownership regarding how to stabilize the company. Her recommendations were largely ignored for some time.
By late 2012, the ownership had endured several years of declining revenue, with no end in sight. Desperate to stop this trend, ownership finally started listening to Cheryl, then the company’s Controller, and came to the realization that she knew far more about the industry than any of the management teams that had been brought in to manage Vianda in the last five years.
Cheryl J. was appointed acting CEO in 2013 and the process of stabilizing Vianda began. Cheryl and her team then focused on revisiting Vianda’s core brands and making some minor formulation changes in order to make them into the highest quality natural supplements available. They also worked hard to ensure that Vianda’s products were available through as many proven and emerging sales channels as possible. She retrained all of her team members and instilled the fundamental notion that every customer would receive world class service every time they came in contact with Vianda. Finally, she began the process of winning back the trust of the governmental agencies regulating Vianda. The only limiting factor was that she had to do all of this with the cash she could generate from operations. Despite the shoe-string budget she was given to work with, the changes that Cheryl implemented were successful and she began to turn things around.
Over the past decade, Vianda has seen many changes. One of those changes being the onset of new ownership. Effective January 1, 2015, Cheryl J. became the sole owner of Vianda. Since then, in addition to sustained profitability, Vianda has made serious strides in improving its regulatory compliance processes. Vianda recently passed an FDA inspection with no 483 being issued; meaning that there were no findings and only minor comments as to where the operation could be improved.
Vianda is currently a woman owned and managed health and wellness company, and has been since 2015. Our approach to health is simple – accept nothing but the very best.
Vianda has the strength to take risks, learn from failure, and have the courage to fight for what we believe in. We will never give up - no matter the challenge. The business world is unpredictable, and a strong leader is essential. The members of the amazing team at Vianda possesses traits like vision, confidence, perseverance, determination, creativity, and passion - the traits needed to build and maintain a successful business.
As Cheryl and her team look toward the future, they are intent on seeing Vianda continue to outpace the competition in the world of natural health. Vianda’s focus will remain on supplying premium, doctor-formulated brands with the highest efficacy and which exceed the expectations of our growing list of loyal customers. Vianda will remain committed to developing and marketing the highest quality products that not only deliver results, but improve lives, in a natural manner.
Vianda has recently been granted the prestigious Certification of the WBENC - Women’s Business Enterprise National Council. We look forward to the opportunities that this will bring to us. We will now have the ability to broaden scope with our partners - both current and new.