This bootstrapped D2C startup is meeting the personal care needs of those in their 40s and above
“I’m the guy who has got the disposable income, but nobody is coming after me,” says VS Srikanth, an advertising professional cum entrepreneur, whose direct to consumer (D2C) startup caters to the needs and requirements of those in the age group of 40-65 years.
Fifty-two-year-old Srikanth, who spent close to three decades in the world of advertising, was irked by the fact that marketers never really catered to his age group when these are the people who really spend.
“Even when I go shopping with my children, it is very noticeable that products are targeted at millennials, but the real purchasing power is with people like us,” says Srikanth.
This triggered him to startalong with Rimona Ganapathy and Binoy Wilson in 2020. Srikanth had earlier co-founded a boutique advertising firm in 2004, which was acquired by WPP in 2014.
The Bengaluru-based startup offers products like shampoos, conditioners, hair serums, and other products for people aged 45 and above.
The trio, who have known each other professionally and personally for quite some time, decided to focus on services and products for slightly older generation.
The startup initially came out with an online discovery destination where one could read the content and connect, but soon realised it would be a very time consuming process.
The team then did a market research and the numbers were revealing. According to Srikanth, if India’s millennial population is around 330 million, then those in the 40-65 age group is around 350 million. Added to this, this group has the purchasing power.
Also, there has been a perceptible change in the mindset of people in their 40s and 50s who have benefitted from the economic reforms of 1991. It has made this generation more experimentative and believe there is life beyond the age of 50 and it is not just retirement.
Amazing Greys then decided to come out with products to cater to this generation in the space of “functional personal care”.
Srikanth believes many of the personal care products used by this generation like shampoos, hair conditioners or face cleaners are the ones which are used by the family, but this may not necessarily be the right option.
“There is a constant change in our human body and this requires products which are in the form of functional personal care,” says Srikanth.
For example, greying of hair is a very common phenomenon for those in their 40s, but Srikanth believes mere colouring is not the solution.
According to him, greying of the hair is also a sign that the hair is damaged, lost its strength or become frizzy.
This led Amazing Greys to come out with a range of specific products, which includes shampoo, conditioner, and serum.
This is just the beginning for the startup as it introduced a range of products in the month of August this year, and it has plans to launch more products soon.
The next area of target is skincare as Srikanth feels it is an unaddressed segment for this category of consumers.
The skin loses its elasticity - the highest is in the neck region - and this D2C startup is coming out with a cream, which will help the body create more elastin naturally.
“We believe in functional solutions and our products should make a difference,” says Srikanth.
Amazing Greys sources these products from outside as there is a strong ecosystem that has been built over the years in the country, which can develop these based on customers’ requirements.
The startup has priced its products in the price range of Rs 500-600, which Srikanth says is at the point of affordable luxury.
The initial response to its products has been overwhelming, according to the co-founder.
The majority of customers have been women, and in many cases, the younger generation is also buying it probably for their parents.
Amazing Greys has identified around 30-40 products, which would be attuned to its targeted customer profile. This would fall in the segment of washaway, leaveons, and ingestible.
“This set of customers are treated as extension of brands as many of them are not thinking through the needs of this generation,” says Srikanth and adds, “there was a huge unmet demand.”
The startup believes its products are true in their nature of promising a certain solution and it follows a stringent quality procedures.
According to Statista, India's beauty and personal care market, estimated at $25.9 billion in 2020, is projected to reach $32.7 billion by 2023, growing at a CAGR of 8.1 percent.
However, Amazing Greys is facing challenges while addressing this segment of consumers.
“It is challenging to convince people to switch from generalist products they use to ones that is very crafted to functional needs. We need to migrate the audience to a concept that they are not used to,” says Srikanth.
The bootstrapped venture, which has not got any direct competition as of now, has raised funding from certain angel investors and is likely to close a pre-series A round soon.
“The needs are endless and the opportunity is so huge,” says Srikanth.
Edited by Megha Reddy