How did you end up in the adult toy business? When did it happen?
I have a degree in Philology, I am an interpreter by training. I moved to Spain five years ago to exercise my profession. There, in Spain, I completed my education in the field of international affairs. I wondered how multinational companies worked and what the procedure of making a new product was like. I combined my basic education with Chinese lessons and once Adrien Lastic announced a vacancy, I went there. They needed a person who could speak Chinese as the company’s manufacturing is based in China.
Did you have an idea of the company's business area when you were invited to the interview?
I did not! They needed a sales agent, no mention was made of the products, though. The description contained a short note saying “Healthcare goods”. When I came to the office and saw those posters, samples, I had a shock when I realized I would have to work with this stuff. When I was allowed to the meeting hall for the interview, with two gentlemen, I saw the walls having these products and the desks of the office having personal souvenirs on them. I have always been very open-minded, I had visited sex shops before, later I discovered that the toys I had bought and used had been made by Adrien Lastic. I started getting into the company, this business area turned into something I could speak frankly about. If everybody had similar toys, life would be better, there wouldn’t be so many cases of nervous disorders, people could be happy and they would stop complaining about their life.
Are your people tolerant of the fact that you are working in such a sphere?
My parents definitely are, they know everything. However, I have recently discovered that our colleagues’ relatives are frequently unaware of the area they are working in. People tell them they have something to do with pharmaceutics, cosmetics, makeup, sanitary towels, without specifying the area. In Spain, people seem to be more open, but they are actually not. My colleagues tend to avoid mentioning their working area, especially with their older relatives. It is a pity because there are exercise machines to help treating urinary incontinence, for example. I can’t actually tell my grandmother she should use such a device as she seems to had been using her intimate space for childbirth only.
Do you like the format of this particular event? Is it your first ThaiFest?
Yes, it is my first time here. The format is great. They say, this year they have improved the format. Some trainings are scheduled for the morning hours and others for the evening, it is no longer a non-stop, eight-hour session as it used to be.
This year, private rooms are also provided.
Yes, it is very comfortable to have a private room, there is no need to shout. On the first day, the organizer asked me: ‘Is your voice still ok?’ And then: ‘Oh, you’ve got a private room, I forgot’. So, the new format is excellent. I really like it!
Can you say some words about “Astkol-Alfa”, please? Is your cooperation ok?
This is our number- one distributor across Russia, we love them. It takes a lot of hard work to launch a new product, every toy has a story behind it. Our toys are very special, of an acquired taste, let’s say, they are not classical, still our distributor contributes to their successful presentation. Although in the USA and in Europe these toys are quite common and some people might not see anything strange about them, for our market they are considered to be something very specific.
It is probably a matter of mindset. In conclusion, you can say some words to your Russian customers-those who come to a shop and buy a toy from your collection, not those vendors or wholesalers. Could you say any greetings to them?
Let some pleasure come into their life! They should feel free to read and watch videos about these things. I know that some people do like these things but their mindset won’t let them go ahead. There may be people who would like to speak about it to an audience but they tend to feel awkward. I wish they could give it a try, be open-minded to explore and improve their life. Our toys are not made for replacing the partner, they are meant to add an extra spark into relations.