We sat down with Michael R. Lorenti, Jr. at his latest Sensatia Botanicals store at Seminyak Village’s First Floor. It’s so easy to fall in love with Sensatia store, as it stays true to its modern apothecary look. The outside façade itself stands out even more with its white door with glass panel and hanging leaves. Sensatia is the first and only GMP Certified Cosmetic Company in Bali, in addition to have its 200 products registered at BPOM (Indonesia’s National Agency of Drugs and Food Control).
How did you start Sensatia?
“Originally, our first product was coconut soaps, and we were making it out of my garage. That was in 1999, then some Japanese friends offered to help sold our products, which then led to a consistent small business. One thing led to another, we got requests for other things, like massage oils and such.” “At one point, I realized that we could pretty much make anything. That was pretty much when we really started to adhering ourselves to GMP certification guidelines.”
So when did Sensatia officially started?
“Sensatia was later born in 2000, with only three staffs at that time, and now has expanded to 48 workers.”
What does Sensatia mean?
“The name Sensatia derives from the word sensation, which then I sort of translate to an elevated physical, mental, and ethereal state of heightened sensuality and passion, as a result of the titillation of the senses.”
Why did you decide to move to Bali out of all places?
“I’m a photographer by trade and I was living in Downtown San Francisco with skaters and artists, until the point where I thought I had to get out of here and go to a place where it’s sane. I even told an idea to a friend to sell all my things, move to Bali and surf for the rest of my life, which I did three weeks later! I also opted to live at Jasri, Karangasem in East Bali, instead of Kuta. And I’ve been living there 1997, which is now also the factory for Sensatia”
Do you have any business motto?
“I got this really good advice from a guru saying that in order to make money in this world is to make something that every housewives needs. But it’s really true, and in a way Sensatia is something that you can find in every person’s bathroom. It’s consumable and you’re not going to go broke consuming our products,”
Do you cater to hotels as well?
“Yes, we’ve been trusted to supply amenities for some of the island’s five-star resorts, such as W Retreat and Spa, The Stones Hotel Legian, Mandapa Ritz Carlton, Semara Villas, and soon to be open Katamama at Potato Head. We also do exports as well.”
With all the success, how do you give back to the community?
“I share my success with my fellow employee by giving 20 per cent of the company’s shares for the staffs. I find the greatest satisfaction and have always been my goal to produce more sales in order to pay higher wages, so the money is spent within an area that is more or less repressed [Karangasem].”