For Indian online beauty retailer Nykaa, fashion is the next biggest frontier

Jeans and a belt, a perennial fashion choices.

Online beauty retailer Nykaa, which entered the unicorn club recently, is betting big on fashion and has seen sales recover by over 90% compared to pre-covid levels, said a top executive.

Nykaa Fashion, which was launched in 2018, currently lists more than 600 brands and expects to have 200 more by the end of the year.

“Fashion may be nearly 20% of our GMV (gross merchandise volume) in the near term. And we are working towards building it to almost 40% of our business in the next 3-5 years … our fashion category is already trending 160% of February (or business as usual) levels,” Falguni Nayar, founder and CEO, Nykaa said in an interview.

As covid-19 continues to disrupt businesses, Nykaa is capitalising on the trend of offline fashion retailers trying to sell their inventory online, as customers flock to shop virtually.

“…However, we at Nykaa pride ourselves on a small percentage of our goods being discounted. With offline stores being disrupted, fashion brands want to sell 20-30% of their goods on e-commerce, and with that they are bringing their new seasons online,” she said.

“For a lot of fashion brands, which continue to look at India as a strong growth market, and establish a presence, Nykaa is not just an online retailer, but also has a strong omni-channel play with offline stores. And brands are looking to partner with us to not just help them create a presence but also retail their products, creating an end-to-end.” said Anchit Nayar, CEO, Retail, Nykaa.

During the lockdown, Nykaa saw sales drop as much as 70% in April and started listing essential products to avoid overwhelming customers with non-deliverable inventory. Subsequently, Nykaa also started optimising its 70 pan-India stores by providing hyperlocal delivery.

Nykaa has also seen a consumer shift towards essential categories, including personal skin and hair care products.

“The essential business, which includes everything apart from cosmetics and fragrances, continues to be very strong and is performing at a much higher percentage share, compared to pre-covid. In July, during our sale, we also saw customers buying makeup. Personal care including skin and hair products are definitely making up for the loss in makeup and other categories,” added Nayar.

This article was first published on livemint.com.

Singapore Reporter/s

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Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

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  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.