There are no glass ceilings for women and they need to want to dream about themselves, said fashion and beauty e-commerce platform founder Falguni Nayar at the Hindustan Times Leadership Summit 2022.

“Let the spotlight of your life be on you. For too long women have been afraid to dream about themselves. We have given them chance to be born, lets give them the chance to dream”, Nayar, who has been named as India’s richest woman by the Hurun List, told Sruthijit KK, editor-in-chief, Mint.

The 59-year-old entrepreneur whose company now houses more than 5,500 brands, said there are no glass ceilings for women. “For women there are no glass ceilings. Women need to dream for themselves. The empowerment and support has to come from home. From family, you need to be empowered to pursue your dreams than what companies do. I am a big believer that women empowerment has to begin at home”, she said.

Founded in 2012, Nykaa has 128 stores spread across 58 cities of India, which is 95 per cent of the total zip codes in the country. Nayar said 60 per cent of the demand for beauty and fashion products comes from non-metro cities. During the interaction, she called it the democratisation of beauty and beauty products.

Secret sauce

When questioned about what was the secret sauce of her business, Nayar credited it to the customers who trust Nykaa to bring them the best in the world. “We are a very open organisation. We listen to our customers and all the ideas come from them. They tell us to bring this particular brand or open a store here. We have been very active on social media”, she added.

Finding foot in beauty biz

During her stay in the West, Falguni Nayar discovered how big the beauty products market was in those countries. Compare to India, where the market was a nascent one in a geographically diverse country. “I was aware of the e-commerce in US so we thought if we could marry e-commerce with the problems of Indian beauty industry and come up with a multi-brand retailer having a focus to deliver beauty experience to e-commerce will be the right way to go ahead”.

Recalling the time when several beauty brands were leaving the country, Nayar mentioned there were naysayers who advised her to opt for e-commerce in electronics, fashion.

“We were convinced that it was a good idea”. Pointing out that the team got information about the market and prospects of taking it from offline to online, Nayar said she went ahead with gut feeling and conviction. She added that Nykaa took consumers on a journey to learn about beauty products.

Millennials key to success

Nayar credited the millennial consumers who were exposed to social media as the key to her brand’s success in early days. “Since then, consumers from the old age group are also buying beauty products, but the initial success was from millennials,” she said.

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