Organic Beauty is the formulation of cosmetic products using organically farmed ingredients. These ingredients are grown without the use of Genetically Modified Organisms (GM), herbicides, synthetic fertilisers, etc. Many research articles deem organic beauty products better for your skin. In fact, it’s not only good for us but also for the environment. Organic farming combines a high level of biodiversity with environmental practices that preserve natural resources and has rigorous standards for animal welfare.
With it’s philosophy rooted in crafting products that are organic, safe and offer long-term benefits, Organic Harvest which today has a workforce of about 700 odd people, was established in 2013 by a man on a mission, Mr. Rahul Agarwal. He started off his career in the dynamic world of Finance and after working 5 years with Ernst & Young, the entrepreneurial bug had landed its bite. He went on to teach students in the USA with an army of Indian teachers under a Government Funded Programme (No Child Left Behind), organised by the US Federal Government. Though this pursuit was a cash cow, with a dire need to create long term value and with a reason to believe that the Government policies had a tendency to change or be scrapped in this case the Programme being jettisoned in 2015, he ventured out looking for something new. After days of careful deliberation, he chose the Personal Care field and in it, beauty products. Although something according to him was missing, he brainstormed a little more and Voilà! “Organic” was the missing bit.
After 2 years of thorough research and development, he went on to get the ECOCERT certification which was bestowed upon them by one of the biggest European Organic Certification Organisations by the same name. As per rules organic products unlike Ayurvedic ones require a certification. This organisation demands that in order to receive the certification, the ingredients utilised in a product have to be 95% organic making sure that they are absolutely safe to use and quite healthy for the skin.
When the company launched, it was out in the traditional distribution network with there eventually being 300 outlets in the top metropolitan cities. Each of the outlets was equipped with a “Beauty Advisor”, a highly trained sales person, who would not only consult the clients but also introduce and suggest the products based on their requirements. Now, this omni-channel present brand with it’s vast range of skin and hair care products has targeted an audience between the ages of 25-45 years, especially working women residing in top 12-15 cities with an inclination towards green products and a healthy lifestyle in and around those ages.
By offering a little blood, toil, tears and sweat, the company has completed 8 years in the industry. They have their physical presence in about 15,000 outlets. They also sell products via their own website as well as third party websites and apps including Nykaa, Vanity Wagon, Flipkart and many more. Speaking of their E-com, their second largest networking channel, they have managed to secure export ties through Amazon to countries around the world, viz; UK, USA, Canada, Germany, etc. As for the traditional channels, they have export ties with the Middle East, UAE and parts of Europe where they distribute their wide range of products via local distributors. Other than specially curated products for online and offline channels, Organic Harvest has also arranged for an exclusive assortment of products specially for Salons.
According to Mr. Rahul one of the most prominent challenges they had to overcome in their process of creating Organic Harvest was initiating the brand in an already competitive market and building the consumer’s trust. They nonetheless managed to overcome this through efficient brand communication and their go to market strategy; The Beauty Advisor Route. Placing a beauty advisor in their high footfall outlets and engaging in one-on-one direct consumer interaction they have successfully gained peoples trust all around the world today. He also found his silver lining in the pandemic situation with the inevitable change in the consumer psychology. COVID-19 has promoted people to buy almost everything from basic necessities to luxury items online. Initially every person wanted to try things out, especially beauty products in physical stores before making their purchase. However, owing to the pandemic situation, people are switching to buying goods online in a heartbeat which Mr. Rahul has used to his advantage.
With a monthly revenue of 600 crores, spot on marketing and sales techniques, appropriate product distribution, smart capitalisation of various sales channels and all organic skin and hair care products ranging all way from shampoos to face masks to lip balms, Organic Harvest is most certainly on the rise to becoming India’s No. 1 Organic Beauty Brand just as Mr. Rahul intended it to be.
“Start-ups survive on experimentation and innovation”
– Rahul Agarwal