In the recent past, India has witnessed a huge boom in the organic products market. Earlier, organic products from India were mostly exported to Europe and the US. Now, thanks to rising awareness among Indian consumers, the sales figures in the domestic market have started to surpass exports.
In 2011, around the time people had just started waking up to the potential of organic products, Rahul Agarwal, a serial entrepreneur, realised the business opportunity in organic personal care products.
After having worked with Ernst & Young for five years, Rahul had launched his first venture, Innovadia LLC, in 2007. Before launching Organic Harvest in 2013, he spent two years exploring the beauty and skin care segments in India and abroad.
“In recent times, there has been a drastic increase in the number of beauty-conscious consumers who are moving towards an organic skin care regime. We observed that in this segment, the market was either flooded with mainstream beauty products that carry harmful skin-damaging chemicals or international organic skin care brands which were not affordable. Keeping this fact in mind, we thought of introducing our brand, packed with the goodness of nature and the innovation of science, and which is also priced keeping in mind the sensitivities of the consumer,” says Rahul, CEO and Founder, Organic Harvest.
Talking about his product, he says that the raw materials used are certified by global organisations like ECOCERT, OneCert, and NATRUE, proving that they have been sourced from fertiliser- and herbicide-free plants.
“Our brand embraces the organic power of plants and its botanical extracts in abundance combined with organic and natural ingredients,” says Rahul.
Starting out with an initial investment of $6 million, it spent the money on R&D, sales and marketing, and capital expenditure.
Launching the venture with 30 SKUs, today it boasts of more than 100 SKUs spanning across skin care, hair care and body care.
Organic Harvest is currently available in 5,000 outlets and plans to increase the presence to 50,000 in India within a span of one year. It is exporting its products to three countries in the forthcoming year and gradually wants to increase the number to 10. The startup plans to increase its exclusive brand outlets from 10 to 25 in a year. Bangladesh and Nepal are two of the countries where Organic Harvest’s products can be found.
“We clocked a turnover of Rs 25 crore last year. We are targeting a turnover of Rs 100 crore in the next two years,” says Rahul.
According to Transparency Market Research, the global demand for organic personal care products was over $7.6 billion in 2012 and is expected to reach $13.2 billion by 2018, growing at a CAGR of 9.6 per cent from 2012 to 2018.
The international biggies in this segment include Olay, Neutrogena, and L’Oreal, with some other players such as Forest Essentials, Kama Ayurveda and The Body Shop.
The brand desires to establish its presence in Malaysia, Singapore and Indonesia by the next quarter.
Organic Harvest is working on the extension of its existing range, besides which it will soon be introducing new products like alcohol-free hand sanitiser, followed by lines for babies and men.
“Indian consumers are quite conscious of the link between beauty and health. It all started with organic food and now organic skin care products. Consequently, there is a growing demand for chemical-free skin care products and our brand caters to the needs of this health-conscious segment. Consumers have started appreciating Organic Harvest products and we have been receiving tremendous response from the end consumers with both repeat and referral customers. This clearly shows our potential of growth in the near future,” concludes Rahul.