The Woman Behind Barras, LLC. | Tanairí Miranda
Our founder and CEO created Barras 7 years ago (2016) but it wasn’t until October 2017 (after Hurricane Maria) that she launched Barras as an official market brand. Tanairí Miranda Torres is a 27 years old girl boss, born in 1996 in Ponce, Puerto Rico. Since she was a kid, she has had the entrepreneur personality and a creative mind. In her early school she started her business of candy, jewelry and other stuff. She has always been the “leader” type of child looking forward to being independent since a very young age. She comes from a very artisan family, her two grandmothers and grandfather taught her a lot. Actually, her soap business comes from her grandmother's kitchen and recipes. Tanairí went through the public education system in Puerto Rico, graduating from the Specialized High School in Math and Science Thomas Armstrong Toro. She studied Primary Education and got her degree as a teacher of primary grades, a profession she never practiced because of soaps. During her first years in the university, she dedicated herself to build a business even without knowing that was the final take.
Through all these years, Barras initiated with friends and family being customers, making deliveries to their works and homes and basically selling from the trunk of her car. After that, Barras was evolving to a Pop-up table shop whenever and wherever people called her to go for events. By that time Barras had a spot two times a month in Plaza el Caribe in Ponce (her local mall) with the Fomento Industrial program for artisans. There, Tanairí boosted the business by connecting with new clients, selling her product and growing as a business woman with this small opportunity. At that time, there were only two or three soaps that he could make... today that amount has grown in his manufacturing and her company produces 10,000 Barras of soap per month. Tanairí evolved that “simple business” by opening a website in 2018 (while having the workshop in the grandma’s house), giving Barras’s clients the opportunity to order directly and with a better service. That first experience was very important as an entrepreneur, having an online business, because she learned a lot. In 2020, she finally launched a more structured e-commerce having real consecutive orders and also launched our physical store located in Ponce, Puerto Rico. This store was opened on March 1st, 2020 as the first open concept store for handcrafted soaps in the south of Puerto Rico. The type of store you could go and shop at, but also have the whole experience of seeing the manufacturing process while shopping. It was a very small in-store shop for manufacture, pick-ups and fulfillment processes.
When we opened on March 1st of 2020, we did a two week “soft opening” to see how well we were going to do and then set an official opening date. But then COVID-19 came. And literally that dream store she started building at that time came to an end. As a company, the pandemic made Barras grow a lot. In a month our sales came up, our production had to grow with the sales and everything around her and her business. It went from 1 employee and the owner to a whole team of 6 people behind the scenes of the fulfillment process, manufacture, customer service and operations management. Because of COVID-19, we closed the shop on March 15, 2020 and we focused our sales to our online shop and the sales have been increasing since then. We now sell not only to Puerto Rico, we now sell worldwide through our e-commerce making this process an experience and giving the best service to our clients.
Over time, Tanairí has grown her business but she has not been alone along the way. She has taken on the task of entering business development programs for the past 3 years where she has been able to learn and apply from mentors and experts in sales, marketing and business in general. Tanairí has led Barras to be a brand with a presence at high levels in these business accelerators, she has even won significant awards and recognition with her pitches and presentations as a female entrepreneur and for her company during this journey of educating herself in programs such as “Paralell 18”, “Bravo Family Foundation”, “Unlock Capital” and “EnterPRize”. Also, she has a team. In the beginning, yes it was a “solo” operation, but then, she started hiring young people just like her and giving them the opportunity of being part of her business. More than that, giving herself the opportunity to grow with the ability and leadership of others. As of today, Barras is proud to say that it can employ an entire team that supports the scaffolding of a local company. Her grandmother, husband, family and friends are part of the real day by day people around her business matters.
Tanairí Miranda, for the past years, has taken over the head of her business content creation, social media and marketing strategies. Being a CEO is real work but being the head of marketing and bringing this brand to life is her passion. Since she discovered her communications abilities and marketing expertise, Barras has found a new life with it but it’s not just like that… Tanairí has been preparing herself to educate and mentor other entrepreneurs to make their best in marketing and business content creation.
In 2022, Tanairí committed to open her first handcrafted mini store in The Mall of San Juan in Puerto Rico being the first independent brand to have a presence in a mall in Puerto Rico. When this happened, she presented her brand as a hybrid, successful and growing soap making business in Puerto Rico setting precedent in her industry. This also opened more doors along with it, making Barras’s Stores openings in Plaza Carolina, and Plaza del Caribe also. Now, Barras is this local soap business in a very important learning phase, exploring new dimensions and adjusting everything everyday to build a strong base to keep the construction on top.
It’s been a long time. Hurricanes, earthquakes, more hurricanes and a pandemic. Also as a business woman Tanairí has been through personal outcomes and business indispositions. If anything can describe Tanairí as Barras’s founder is her resilience and capacity to transform her business into whatever it is necessary when it is necessary. She didn’t come to this world to be average. She wanted to build a legacy and help other people through her testimony and living experiences, and so she is still doing.
This story will continue… for now, thank you to all of you that have supported, shared and loved our business. We appreciate everything you do to keep us working and hustling.