The Indian beauty market is witnessing rapid growth, on the back of strong economic growth, rising incomes and greater awareness of beauty products and personal grooming. International brands such as Estée Lauder and L’Oréal are expanding their presence in the country, with growing portfolios of products in an expanding (albeit still largely fragmented) market.
In recent years, internet retailing became an attractive medium to showcase new beauty products and drive sales. This was, however, largely an urban phenomenon, with online retailers targeting wealthier, internet-savvy urban consumers aware of global brands and trends.
Product innovation is increasingly important to connect with Indian consumers, given the interest in natural products in the country. The beauty and health space provide good opportunities in this regard, and companies have been awake to the increasing demand for herbal and ayurvedic products.
Estée Lauder is a major player in the premium beauty segment in India. Over the last few years, it opened several stand-alone stores in cities such as Mumbai, Delhi and Bangalore, as well as expanding through shop-in-shop corners in Shoppers Stop outlets.
Founded in 2012, Nykaa has become a well-known name in online beauty retailing within a short period. The company is currently pursuing an omnichannel strategy and opening more physical stores in multiple cities to connect more effectively with consumers and drive revenue growth.
Chemists/pharmacies in India is predominantly fragmented, with small retailers accounting for most sales. However, the channel is growing rapidly, and the share of chained players is expected to increase over the next few years.
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