Skincare is one of the fastest-growing consumer categories. It’s defining the momentous period of the rising number of millennials and GenZ prioritizing self-care and endorsing minimal makeup looks. We have grown up hearing the importance of using safe ingredients for our skin, and now we are educated and exposed enough to understand the true barometer of safety. At the same time, increasingly women are entering the workforce while continuing to don the hat of a mother or daughter or wife, which has translated to lesser time on hand. A combination of these has made us requisition great skin that can be accomplished through less but great products. The category has just scratched the surface and the tailwinds are here to stay as more women enter the 20+ era and have higher disposable income. With such a volume of information flow, a higher number of people are choosing the better option for themselves in each consumer category.
Jumping on the bandwagon, D2C skincare brand Foxtale was started in 2021. Inspired by the pain points of consumers as well as the Indian skincare market, the brand aims to demystify and democratize the beauty industry by making efficacious skincare accessible to everyone.
“I had once learned in my banking days, that if you serve your consumer, the market will serve you. We have experienced it first-hand. In a year, we have gone from a Rs 2 crore company to a Rs 100 crore company,” said Romita Mazumdar, Founder of Foxtale Skin.
Inspiration Behind Starting the Brand
The skin has always held a sacred place in Founder Romita Mazumdar’s life. During her childhood, her mother instilled in her the belief that a good complexion negates the need for makeup. This notion became deeply ingrained in her, equating skin health to the importance of other vital organs like the liver and kidneys. When she embarked on her undergraduate journey in the United States, she encountered a time-consuming process of trial and error while seeking out effective skincare products. Eventually, she managed to curate a minimalistic regimen that yielded remarkable results.
Upon returning to India at the age of 24, Romita quickly realized that the American skincare products she had come to rely on were ill-suited for the distinct climate here – a predictable outcome. What followed was a three-year-long quest to discover suitable alternatives. Regardless of the amount of money she invested, the influencers she followed, or the advertisements she trusted, every brand seemed to be merely capitalizing on fleeting trends – be it Korean skincare, the pursuit of "glass skin," the allure of ubtan, or the fascination with green apple extracts. As a consumer, this was profoundly frustrating.
Parallel to this, her career as a Venture Capitalist brought her into close contact with many of these skincare brands on a daily basis. To her mounting frustration, each presentation appeared more focused on marketing prowess than on genuine product innovation. There was a conspicuous lack of comprehension regarding the skin's status as a vital organ and the fundamental significance of prioritizing its health for achieving genuine radiance.
It was this exasperating journey that ultimately led her to identify a significant void in the market – an opportunity to establish a company that crafts effective products with a paramount emphasis on tangible outcomes and safety. She envisioned a skincare brand that stands as a true innovator, dedicated to formulating products that unequivocally deliver on their promises.
A Digital-First Brand
Foxtale is primarily focused on its website as the core platform driving its operations, and a significant portion of its revenue originates from this channel. In addition to its website, the brand has successfully established a robust presence on e-commerce platforms such as Amazon, Nykaa, Myntra, and Flipkart. These four channels have proven to be exceptionally fruitful for its business, consistently exhibiting month-on-month growth. “Guided by a "land and expand" strategy deeply embedded in our brand's identity, we have meticulously selected platforms and opportune moments for expansion. Having attained our targeted growth rates while upholding profitability across each channel, our trajectory entails a continued penetration into these avenues,” stated Mazumdar.
“As told above, our reason to exist was to have products that deliver results. Now that entailed a disciplined measurement of seeing if consumers are getting the result with each FoxTale purchase – which is always reflected in retention. Retention as a metric means how many users come back to you after their first purchase. Our choice for D2C was driven by that. We knew we had created great products but we needed the consumers to validate the same. Keeping our retention rate high, we as a brand want to be able to deliver experience and that is something we hold ourselves very close to – Customer Delight,” she further added.
Offline: A Thrust Area
The brand has just started establishing its footprint in the offline market. It is primarily in General Trade and is present across 10+ cities. Foxtale is currently delivering p an-India in 95 percent+ pincodes.
“We will be expanding to close to 50K stores by the end of the year in 30 cities in India. We will always be where the user is and make the shopping experience optimized for her – be it less than 3 days of delivery or accessibility in the nearest store,” she asserted.
Currently, Foxtale’s focus lies exclusively within the realm of skincare, encompassing a range of 13 products. However, in the upcoming year, the brand is poised to venture into the realm of body care. Its demographic comprises individuals aged between 25 and 35, signifying its target audience's age bracket.
“Given the diverse array and sensitivities of Indian skin types, our concentration is directed towards specific regions across the country. This strategic approach allows us to deeply comprehend the needs and preferences of our target market during product development. As our understanding of their concerns deepens, we find it increasingly feasible to capture a significant share of the market by offering solutions tailored to their skincare challenges,” explained Mazumdar.
The brand goal is to achieve a revenue of over Rs 250 crore next year, representing a growth of over 80 percent year-on-year.
“We have successfully established ourselves as a Rs 100 crore brand. At this stage, our primary focus is on expansion, aiming to achieve an Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) of over 250 crore by the conclusion of 2023,” she concluded.