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Richmond CEO to be filmed in Netflix reality show Dubai Bling

Richmond-based Rejuve+ Health Products has expanded to Asia and the Middle East since its launch last year
Oakley Chan (right), president and CEO of Richmond-based Rejuve+ Health Products, is photographed with Ebraheem Al Samadi, cast member of Netflix's Dubai Bling, in Dubai.

A Richmond entrepreneur may soon appear in the new season of Netflix’s hot reality show Dubai Bling.

Oakley Chan, president and CEO of Richmond-based Rejuve+ Health Products, will make a TV debut for himself and his products in Dubai this month for the season three production of Dubai Bling, as a business partner of cast member Ebraheem Al Samadi.

Dubai Bling is a Netflix-original reality TV show about high-profile business people in the Middle East, their business ventures and glamorous lifestyles.

“I'm like the first person from Canada going to Dubai, working with Abraham to start a new brand. That's what they want to show and attract people all around the world to Dubai,” said Chan.

“Since season one, so many people have gone to Dubai because of the show, to live, to invest, to start their own business.”

Chan’s partnership with the Netflix star started with an Instagram message in May last year. He was watching the first season of Dubai Bling and thought Samadi might be interested in his anti-aging supplement brand.

“He’s sassy, he's very smart in business, and he cares about his appearance, his body, so it's perfect for my supplement,” said Chan.

He then sent a message to Samadi on Instagram to introduce his products, and to his surprise, Samadi, who has 711,000 followers, replied to him wanting to know more.

Chan then made a decision to fly to Dubai the next day.

“I showed up at his business and waited for him with all the products. He was surprised. He thought I would never go there, recalled Chan.

"He told me so many people have messaged him and posted him their products, but none of them were willing to come up here on such short notice."

Samadi then tried the products and a few months later, became the distributor for the brand in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) region, and invited Chan to be on Netflix to launch the product with him.

Chan said he is very excited about his filming trip late this month. The brand exposure on the leading streaming platform is expected to bring in millions of dollars in the equivalent of marketing value.

Power of face-to-face connections

Chan, 35, said he has always believed in the power of face-to-face connections and the opportunities they bring to businesses, that’s why he didn’t hesitate to buy a flight ticket to meet Samadi back then.

A former Toronto-based commercial pilot trainee, Chan got into business after deciding to move to Vancouver and needing money for flight training in B.C. He sold aviation memorabilia and opened a car wrapping business.

“I saved up around $100,000 in cash, but I felt that the business was stagnant because of the people I knew. So I took a bet, and I used that money to lease a car, and I leased the McLaren,” said Chan.

He said the money was only enough for him to lease the car for a year. He needed to leverage it within that year to broaden his network and grow his business – and his strategy worked out "because the car community in Vancouver is actually very tight-knit,” said Chan.

The McLaren was like an entrance ticket that allowed him to meet and connect with owners of major dealerships in B.C. and expand his business significantly. He later opened a Japanese soup curry restaurant at Aberdeen Centre in Richmond and launched Rejuve+ Health Products exporting to Asia.

“That's how I believe business should be done... I think doing business face to face is a hundred times easier than how we're all focused on social media now," said Chan.

He has now moved forward from his career goal to be a commercial pilot as he has found starting and running businesses excites him more.

For Chan, the partnership with Samadi has made him see the large potential in the UAE market and he will focus on growing his brand in the region.

“They are the future. There is a huge market of consumers who have money and the government is welcoming and encouraging businesses to go and invest there.”

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