scorecardNykaa open to funding beauty startups without equity, initially
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Nykaa open to funding beauty startups without equity, initially

Nykaa open to funding beauty startups without equity, initially
Business2 min read
  • Nykaa launches an incubator programme to help potential beauty startups with finance and guidance to grow bigger in the space.
  • Brands are to participate in the programme and showcase their brand value and the winning brand will earn a grant of ₹4 crore ($500,000).
  • A set of judges including actress Katrina Kaif, designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee, stylist Anita Shroff Adajania will be in the jury judging and mentoring the potential beauty brand.
India’s largest beauty e-commerce player, Nykaa has come up with an initiative to support some of the many beauty startups and help build homegrown brands.

Nykaa’s new incubator programme allows beauty startups in the country to showcase their brand and earn a grant of up to ₹4 crore ($500,000) and even an acquisition opportunity in the future.

On July 20, Nykaa launched ‘Beauty&You’ in partnership with American beauty giant Estee Lauder with a prize pool of ₹4 crore that will be distributed among companies chosen by a panel of fashion entrepreneurs.

“We are looking for brands that have innovative ideas and have a sustainable competitive edge and that would be unique products, unique technologies, engaging with new audiences in different ways, creating new business models, offerings, channels.” Shana Randhava, vice-president, ELC New Incubation Ventures told Business Insider India.

Nykaa said that it’s not keen on taking equity in the winning startups in return for the grant amount, but they could.


“There’s a chance that we may invest in these brands but that is not the aim of the programme. The aim is to give them a pure grant of capital without any equity in return. The awarded brands will get the ability to launch on Nykaa’s platform and stores if they are ready for that,” said CEO of the e-commerce giant Nykaa and son of founder Falguni Nayar Achint Nayar.

The programme aims to help founders, innovators, and creators grow their businesses holistically by identifying brand goals, achieving scale ambitions, and curating product portfolios that speak to a new generation of consumers in the Indian market.

A set of judges including actress Katrina Kaif, designer Sabyasachi Mukherjee, stylist Anita Shroff Adajania will be in the jury judging and mentoring the potential beauty brand.

Shana said that they are looking for brands like Haeckel's, a UK based personal care brand whom Estee Lauder recently invested in.

“Our vision is for Beauty & You to harness the entrepreneurial energy in India to advance next-generation beauty brands by presenting opportunities that help put brands on a long-term, sustainable growth path,” said Randhava.

It has not decided on how many winners will be declared, it could be one or even four. The chosen startup brands will be provided with masterclasses, financial support, mentorship, awareness and distribution support.

The application process starts on August 1 on this website and closes on September 30, and winners to be announced in November.

“Brands participating should have passion and the rest we can help with. We have infrastructure to help them build and develop on that,” Achint Nayar, Nykaa, CEO.

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