Beauty start-up turns career banker into India’s newest billionaire


Up to date entrepreneurship is often pushed by the younger: tech-savvy disrupters with grand visions, unshakeable self-belief and fewer to lose if their concepts don’t pan out.

So veteran funding banker Falguni Nayar was considerably anxious again in 2012, when, at age 49, she resigned from a senior job at one in all India’s most profitable non-public banks to start out her personal on-line magnificence retailer Nykaa.

“Entrepreneurship at a younger age is OK — there is no such thing as a draw back if it doesn’t succeed,” Nayar advised the Monetary Occasions. “I used to be continuously considering: how a lot I’m giving as much as begin this — what if it doesn’t work?”

She needn’t have nervous: this month, Nykaa’s company father or mother, FSN E-Commerce Ventures, raised $722m in an initial public offering valuing the corporate at about $7.4bn. On its first day of buying and selling on the Bombay Inventory Alternate, the share worth nearly doubled, sending the valuation to nearly $13bn.

Nayar, whose household collectively owns a 52 per cent stake in Nykaa, was propelled to a brand new standing as India’s wealthiest self-made feminine entrepreneur — proof, if it have been wanted, that maturity, and a thick contact e-book of a few of India’s wealthiest people, are beneficial property to any start-up enterprise.

“The expertise I had in my earlier career helped me steward the ship very effectively,” she stated.

Born Falguni Mehta in 1963, Nayar’s impulse in direction of motion goes again to her Mumbai childhood, when her father ran his personal bearings manufacturing unit, and made few distinctions between his daughter and his son.

“My father handled me as an equal,” she stated. “He didn’t enable me to have a mindset that ‘ladies can not do that’. It was the way in which I used to be raised that made me who I’m. I don’t settle for that ladies have to take care of their lives in another way.”

Nykaa has 85 shops in 40 Indian cities, the place prospects can see and check out beauty and sweetness merchandise earlier than they purchase © Anindito Mukherjee/Bloomberg

She attended the Indian Institute of Administration, Ahmedabad — the nation’s high enterprise faculty — the place she was one in all simply 9 ladies in a category of 150 college students. She later married an IIM modern, Sanjay, who went on to work for Citigroup in London, New York and eventually as its chief government for India and South Asia operations, earlier than becoming a member of non-public fairness group KKR in Mumbai in 2009.

Although Nayar admits to entrepreneurial inclinations whilst a younger graduate, she opted for the safety of a job, initially as a administration marketing consultant, as she sought to stability her career ambitions together with her function as a spouse, after which because the mom of twins.

“Juggle is an important phrase for ladies,” she stated. “I don’t attempt to have a balanced life on a regular basis. There are occasions once I lean in additional in direction of work, and there are occasions when I’ll lean extra in direction of household duties.”

After eight years in consulting, Nayar joined monetary providers group Kotak Mahindra in 1993, establishing its abroad subsidiaries in London after which New York as she adopted her husband’s postings. On the household’s return to India in 2001, she led Kotak’s institutional equities companies, concerned in a lot of India’s early IPOs.

“What I noticed was that someway entrepreneurs had whole conviction in what they have been doing,” she stated. “They noticed a possibility that nobody else noticed.”

By 2008, Nayar had sensed her personal potential alternative — in India’s extremely fragmented cosmetics and sweetness merchandise retail market, which was dominated by tiny mom-and-pop outlets, generally known as “selection shops’”, that additionally offered gadgets corresponding to security pins and hair bands.

Nykaa products
Nayar desires to consolidate Nykaa’s place as the wonder retailer of option to youthful generations

After her youngsters left for school overseas, that craving to “begin one thing from scratch” grew stronger, although it nonetheless took greater than three years to make a transfer from Kotak.

“It’s very exhausting to give up an excellent job, however I lastly managed to get the braveness and give up in 2012,” she stated, including that she began engaged on the corporate, from her father’s previous workplace, the very subsequent day.

Preliminary funding for Nykaa, which was launched in October 2012, got here from the household’s private financial savings from years in banking and finance, and Nayar didn’t take cash from different traders till 2014.

She was clear that her firm needs to be a retail enterprise with a inventory of merchandise, not simply an ecommerce platform the place consumers and sellers can transact, as Amazon and Walmart-owned Flipkart have needed to construction themselves in India.

Beside a slick website and app, Nykaa additionally has 85 shops in 40 Indian cities, the place prospects can see and check out beauty and sweetness merchandise earlier than they purchase.

As a result of India restricts overseas funding in multi-brand retail, Nayar has at all times needed to be cautious in fundraising. At a time when SoftBank and different overseas traders have been pouring money into Indian start-ups, Nayak’s first traders have been rich Indians each inside India and abroad, although Henry Kravis, the co-founder of personal fairness group KKR, additionally owns 1.1 per cent.

After the blockbuster IPO, India’s newest billionaire has no plans to relaxation on her laurels. Nayar and her twins, Anchit and Adwaita, who’re 31 and each have high roles on the firm, are working to consolidate its place as the wonder retailer of option to youthful generations.

“The traders have put their belief in us and predict us to develop at a really quick tempo,” Nayar stated.

She additionally hopes the success of Nykaa, a reputation derived from a Sanskrit phrase meaning actress or heroine, will encourage different ladies.

For all her personal doubts, she admits she was at all times propelled ahead by her lack of worry.

“I’m an journey seeker at coronary heart and I don’t see the chance,” she stated. “I’ll be the weakest swimmer in my household and the primary to leap within the water.”



Beauty start-up turns career banker into India’s newest billionaire Source link Beauty start-up turns career banker into India’s newest billionaire

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