"Our brand story is so enriching and fun to share with customers: it’s not just a knife they are purchasing but a piece of French history."
Meet Victoria Scully, sales representative at Opinel USA, based in California.
Can you introduce yourself in a few words?
My name is Victoria Scully and I have worked with Opinel USA since April of 2018. I came from a sales role in the fashion industry, so getting into knives was a fun change of pace. My sales role has changed over the years but mainly focuses on brick and mortar dealers. I love being a part of a small tight knit team and seeing it grow.
What does your job entail?
My job’s main objective is to raise brand awareness and increase overall sales in the brick and mortar division for Opinel USA. This consists of many moving parts which include managing independent sales reps, creating sales programs, reporting and monitoring sales, identifying key retailers, interfacing with existing dealers, working with marketing teams, training sales staff, making sure we have enough inventory and so on.
How is to work with a French brand? What are the reaction of your clients?
My last two jobs before Opinel were with European companies, so it was no surprise I ended up at a French brand.
My clients love our brand story and the fact that we are still made in France staying with our roots. They also ask me if I speak French and sadly I have to say no.
What do you consider to be the most important selling point?
I like to rely on the classic three pillars of Opinel. History, Quality and Affordability. Now more than ever, consumers are seeking high quality products that don’t cost a fortune and we have that product. Also, our brand story is so enriching and fun to share with customers- it’s not just a knife they are purchasing but a piece of French history.
Who are your main customers?
As I am the Field Sales Manager, my main customers range from small independent brick and mortar stores to larger regional dealers with several locations. Our customers range from kitchen/ housewares stores, outdoor specialty stores, lifestyle gift stores, garden centers, and hardware stores.
What do you like most about your job?
I love interfacing with our dealers directly and forming relationships that go beyond selling. By getting to know their business and what their customer is looking for, we can strategize together on how to best offer our products through in store merchandising, proper assortment, staff training, etc. Since I haven’t been able to do many store visits this year, making sure to pick up the phone to simply check in on them has been rewarding.
Can you sum up your job in a few words?
Exciting, Fun and Rewarding. This job is very rewarding because there is so much growth potential here in the US. To see our retailers have success selling our knives to their customers (who may have never head of Opinel before) is exciting- and a win-win.
Have you any anecdotes you'd like to share?
When I attended my first Outdoor Retailer trade show with Opinel, I had several people come by to show me their vintage pocket knives and all had a cool story to tell. It made me realize the emotional connection so many had with our knives.
How did you hear about Opinel?
When I lived in Stockholm, I saw the Table Chic knives at a friend’s house and thought they were beautiful. I didn’t hear about Opinel again until I applied for the job several years later.
Howl Mercantile, Salida, Colorado & Modern Love, Frenchtown, New Jersey
How do you feel to work for an iconic French brand? What was your friends/family reaction?
I feel very proud to be working for a company with such a strong 130 year brand history. It is a sales person’s dream to have a product that they truly believe in so the selling comes naturally. To be able to offer retailers a product that is high quality, with an affordable price with amazing story to tell is rare and not a lot of companies can offer that.
My friends and family had never heard of Opinel – but now they also love it!
What values would you say that the company holds?
Sustainability, Employees, and Quality. They value the environment with their incentives on packaging and sourcing local materials. They value their employees by treating them well and having some working there for decades! And last the quality- staying true to the brand and continuing to make high quality products in France with the finest materials.
What is your favourite Opinel product? Which one do you like offering as a gift?
I still love the N.8 Black Oak-the wooden box makes it look super sophisticated and too pretty to use- yet it’s practical and food safe.
I like to offer the essentials sets to friends- it’s the perfect assortment to start cooking with smaller kitchen tools. The fun color ways make them extra unique and special to gift.