Business Envoy February 2022
Dilkara Australia – following the rainbow
Julie Okely, a proud Kamilaroi woman, is taking on major global brands. Dilkara, her home-grown cosmetics and hair care range is derived from Australia's native Indigenous botanicals and is in demand, with the US and UK the strongest markets.
The word Dilkara is an Aboriginal word for rainbow and each Dilkara product has also been given an Aboriginal name to connect it to both Julie's culture, and the organic Australian bush areas and themes that have been selected for the products. The company's marketing approach is to educate and provide access to Indigenous knowledge and culture for people who may never have experienced the Australian bush. It taps into the positive sentiment for Australia in the international market and their perception of clean air, beautiful and unspoilt landscapes, and ancient wisdom.
Dilkara's blends are renowned for their healing qualities and are infused with traditional Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander native bush essences that are compatible with the harsh Australian climate. Working with Indigenous communities profoundly influenced Dilkara's products. By blending Australian Dreamtime in their product names, they use the art of storytelling to connect people to place.
It was important to Julie that the brand is Australian Made, environmentally friendly, uses sustainable packing and maintains authenticity in their supply chain by sourcing ingredients from Indigenous Communities. With elements like Desert Lime, Kakadu Plum, Eucalyptus and Tea Tree oil they have recently won global recognition in the 2021 Luxury Lifestyle Awards in the category of Best Luxury Hair Care in Australasia.
In 2021, Dilkara's products were launched on Amazon, extending their global reach. Dilkara expanded into a skincare line, going from 30 products to 63 and reinvented their e-commerce platform. Taking 12 months to build, the platform provides a diagnostic tool for clients, allowing them to choose which products suit their skin and hair.
Growing Dilkara has been a joy to me, and I am proud to say that as a single parent and sole operator, I have grown this business over the years to see it become a very successful brand.
Julie Okely, Founder