Founder of Nykaa- Inspiring The Women Entrepreneurs Of India

Falguni Nayar, Indian born Founder of multi-brand beauty retailer Nykaa, is a living proof that with the right strategies, hardwork and support, all the women entrepreneurs of India can make impossible possible.

Women empowerment is still a matter of concern in India. It’s not where it should be. There are many families who still consider their daughters getting married their top priority. In India, it’s not usual for women to become entrepreneurs and have a business of their own.

Women entrepreneurs of India like Falguni Nayar set a great example to the young entrepreneurs who along with their studies, are trying to set their foot in the field of entrepreneurship. They prove that as believed traditionally, women don’t belong in kitchen. They can very well achieve anything if they go for it.

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Founder of Indian Brand, Nykaa

Falguni Nayar is an IIM Ahmedabad alumnus and was the former Managing Director at Kotak Mahindra Capital Company. She gave up a high paying job to pursue the dream of becoming an entrepreneur.

This choice of leaving an established career behind and entering the world of entrepreneurship was obviously not easy.

But her love for makeup and curiosity to test online marketing platform made her the founder of Nykaa.

She comes from a Gujrati family but was born and brought up in Mumbai. Her father is a businessman and she grew up talking about business and investment.

After graduating from IIM, she started her career as a management consultant. She spent around 19 years- a major chunk of her career- working at Kotak Mahindra Capital Co. When she left in 2012, she was the managing director and head of its institutional equities business.

She was happy in her job but not satisfied. It wasn’t fulfilling. The entrepreneur in her wanted to do something challenging. Something that has the potential to make a difference to the Indian society.

After her children left the country to study in US, the to-be founder of Nykaa decided it was time to embark on her entrepreneurial journey.

She quit a job at the age of 51,which was very difficult to quit as it was going right. But she decided to take that risk in 2012. Which we all know now turned out to be pretty fruitful.

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Changing the face of e-tailer selling

Founder of nykaa

Many people undermined her idea of introducing beauty and wellness products into e-tailing sector. But Nayar didn’t let them get to her. She had a firm belief that online marketing, even for beauty products, has massive growth potential.

Nayar got the inspiration of curating all the beauty brands in one place from the international brand Sephora. In fact Nykaa is sometimes called Indian Sephora.

She was amazed to learn that there’s no reliable retailer of branded cosmetics in India. This led to the birth of Indian brand, Nykaa.

In India, in states like Punjab and haryana, women have to visit nearby metropolitan cities like Delhi just to buy beauty products. The founder of Nykaa has made lives of such women easy. Now all they have to do is just click on order and voila!

How it started

In 2015, Nykaa launched their own products starting with nail enamels. The company was popular among teenage girls for providing a wide variety of cool nail colors. Gradually, they start producing other beauty and wellness products as well. I mean who can resist this beauty!

Nayar decided to start with beauty and wellness products because she wanted the women of India to feel good about themselves. She said every woman has the right to groom herself, not for men or anyone else, but for herself. The fact that she became a self made billionaire is an inspiration to all the women entrepreneurs of India.

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What’s unique about Nykaa is it’s inventory model. In this model, products are purchased through brands and directly sold to the customers. This ensures authenticity. It’s very difficult to maintain the authenticity of beauty products especially when third parties get included in the cycle.

This model allows Nykaa to have a secure hold on it’s items so that they don’t get forged on their way.

“I wanted to stand for those women who want to be beautiful for themselves, not for men or other women!” 

Falguni Nayar

Nykaa’s recent growth

As of now, Nykaa claims to have 200,000 products across 2000 brands and 70 stores across the country.

Aside from women beauty, the company has a wide range grooming items for men too.

The company has also started their own line of clothing which I personally feel is astonishing. Their taste is exquisite and chic.

As reported by Your story, in the month of July this year, the company has now decided to go into travel care and home necessities.

When the world’s economy was going down, Nykaa managed to rise above. The lockdown led to many impulsive buys from the customers. Everything was getting depressing and getting a beauty hamper for yourself felt like a big part of self care at that time.

Apart from this, they promoted their hygiene products like sanitizer, handwashes, beautiful masks when they were needed the most.

Presently, the company has stores in three formats namely Luxe, On Trend, and Kiosks.

The On trend stores are confined to trending and fashionable brands while luxe stores focus on luxury brands like HUDA Beauty, MAC, Dior.

The company is planning to launch USD 3 Billion IPO. They are aiming to improve overall profitability. For a company that launched 8 years ago, it certainly has come a long way.

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The founder of Nykaa has made it possible for all the women entrepreneurs of India to believe in their dreams. She has made the beauty sector of India more beautiful.

What we learn from this story is that if you think that your ideas are valuable, realistic, and attainable, then go for it. Entrepreneurship is being out-of-the-box and standing tough on its own.

Think big but start small.

Falguni Nayar

Risk-taking is essential but do it wisely. See you on the other side of entrepreneurship!