Actress and TV host Noor Neelofa Mohd Noor plans to take her hijab fashion business abroad by making her first foray into New York.
Banking on her study stint in New York and market research, she feels that New York is a strategic location for a physical store and a warehouse of her fashion house, Naelofar Hijab.
"Hopefully, with the setting up of the centre in a big country will give us the impetus to expand into more countries rather than just being based in Malaysia," she told Bernama.
Neelofa said the New York Muslim community inspired her to strengthen her product range there and eventually generate more revenue from overseas.
In 2015, Naelofar Hijab recorded RM50 million in sales, of which 10 per cent was contributed by the international segment that relied merely on online sales without the presence of any physical store in any countries.
"I hope after a regional office is set up in New York, sales from the international segment will increase. I'm looking at a larger contribution," she said.
She said the Malaysia External Trade Development Corporation in New York guided her on the documentation process and the ins and outs of how to set up a regional company.
Making a debut in 2014, Naelofar Hijab triggered a sensation in the local fashion market after only a few years of operations through its scarves without the fuss of pins.
From a humble beginning of selling online and at a bazaar, the scarf collection is now exported to more than 30 countries, including Singapore, Brunei, the UK, Australia, the Netherlands, and the US.
Neelofar Hijab also plans to extend its reach in the Middle East, she said, adding that, "We have a network there. Our partner has outlets in Riyadh, Cairo, and other places in Egypt.
"He intends to bring in Naelofar Hijab into the country. We are still working on the paper work. We will propose to him and then take it from there."