In just seven years, SUGAR has established itself as the premium beauty brand and has successfully created a Rs 100 crore business. IIM Ahmedabad Alumni Vineeta Singh and Kaushik Mukherjee founded SUGAR when leading brands like Lakmé, MAC Cosmetics and L’Oréal were dominating the cosmetic market.
Mukherjee recalls We realised there was a gap in the range of prices offered by the brands. Lipsticks were priced at either Rs 150 or Rs 1400. We introduced SUGAR lipsticks with a mid-range of Rs 500 to Rs 600.”
The products are available on SUGAR’s website and online platforms such as Amazon and Nykaa. Mukherjee stated that “When we introduced our first offline retail with Lifestyle in Hyderabad, we used the database of our online customers to invite them to visit the store. To not use data for your business in today’s age is the most stupid thing.” Within a short period, the company has 195 outlets in India.
The company has achieved tremendous growth with a team of only about 100 people. Mukherjee asserted that “In the next ten years, we want to grow 20 times and aspire to become a Rs 1000 crore business.”
The company reportedly is earning about 10 per cent of total income from the international market — rest of 45 per cent from retail and 45 per cent online platforms.
With the idea of not selling its product through “an ideal beauty”, the company does not have a brand ambassador. Recently, the company collaborated with the influencers on different social media platforms such as Instagram and Youtube to reach maximum numbers of young women. Mukherjee claimed that “This strategy saved a lot of money and has been effective.”
Capital Venture Firm A91 invested Rs 70 crore in SUGAR cosmetics to expand its offline presence through exclusive outlets and multi-brand retail.
To appeal to the younger women, the company used a triangulated illustration style with the quirkiness in its packaging. Jet black matte eye lines are one of the best-selling products of the company.