The green trend in the personal care industry is now permeating to the home care and cleaning products industry and there have been a number of brands in this segment that are introducing important initiatives to offer more eco-friendly and sustainable merchandise.
Consumers today are veering towards natural ingredients in addition to conventional ingredients and this has led to 75 percent of today’s millennial and Gen Z consumers demanding natural skincare products. The demand is such that even the established companies are responding by developing greener lines. In 2019, Dettol, the germ protection brand, announced the launch of soaps and hand washes free from parabens and dyes and infused with natural tulsi and jasmine. P&G has been a pioneer with its laundry detergents for cold water washes. Unilever has gone further by launching a dedicated brand of green home care products. Hindustan Unilever Ltd (HUL) has also extended its soap brand Lux into the herbal and naturals segment with the Lux Botanicals range infused with honey, aloe vera and other natural ingredients.
And in competition with these are D2C start-ups offering clean and green product range, at affordable prices and directly to their consumer base. Brand Nourish’s PUER was initiated with the intent of delivering a lifestyle that offers performance as also safety.
Ankit Daga, Co-founder, PUER, avers, “Why does a consumer have to compromise between performance and safety? We want to break the rut of overutilization of chemical-heavy products to deliver clean and safe products. We aim to offer products that will redefine the utility value of home care and personal care products by combining the power and goodness of nature. Non-toxic, completely natural and safe, PUER products facilitate an enhanced and healthier lifestyle without compromising on efficacy or safety. We have three categories: Home Care which includes liquid detergent, dish wash, floor cleaner, fabric conditioner, all-purpose cleaner; Personal Care offering hand wash antiseptic liquid and we are planning to launch body care this November and our average ticket size is approximately Rs 250.”
While categories such as liquid detergents are highly competitive, the brand is focusing on offering clearly differentiated products that are not only formulated with natural ingredients but are also as efficacious as other chemical-laden counterparts. This brand is essentially a D2C first brand and retails through its own website, across e-commerce platforms and other marketplaces.
The Right Kind of Push
Brand Nourish’s PUER was launched in 2021 by Ankit Daga, the second generation of the promoter family of McNROE Consumer Products Pvt Ltd, along with co-founder Sushant Panda, to offer natural and chemical-free products.
The venture leverages the manufacturing strengths of the McNROE Consumer Products as well as third-party vendors.
Ankit Daga maintains, “We use a wide array of natural ingredients: blend of enzymes, ECOCERT and COSMOS ingredients, blend of natural surfactants, essential oil, malodour control technology, deo-odour control, technology, neodour molecule, anti-redeposition technology. PUER offers products with no phthalate, no paraben, no labsa, no artificial brightener, no phosphate, no sulphate, and no harmful chemical. Our product has no harmful chemicals and thus will cause no harm to your clothes or your skin or nature at large. We come in recyclable packs which is an added delight.”
Besides, the newly launched brand is betting big on the D2C business model and believes that this will enable it to reach a maximum number of consumers in a lesser time frame while scaling up faster than the traditional FMCG model.
“Our goal is to build a brand with strong credibility and grow its reach in terms of the number of households looking at the funnel of affordability. We believe the D2C model will enable us to scale up faster than the traditional FMCG model as we will focus on a capital-light strategy. The D2C tide is at an all-time high. It took off right before the pandemic experiencing a steep rise during the lockdown. The TG for D2C has exploded spanning different age groups and personas. We are riding with the tide and are positive that our bottles will be a sure shot delight. At an initial stage, it has been met with such a positive gust that we are all pumped with enthusiasm. While we are starting as a D2C brand, we would like to have a strong presence across channels. We will partner with other marketplaces in the coming months. We would also launch our products on the retail shelves across modern trade and general trade stores in the next few months,” avers Ankit Daga.
PUER is leveraging all the right tools necessary to scale a brand in a competitive market like today’s especially when consumer shopping behavior is rapidly changing and brands are ensuring to offer the best in class products as well as services in order to stay ahead of the curve. PUER aims to be an omnichannel brand leveraging all the tools ranging from automation to order aggregators to website and sales automation, betting big on technological integration for growth. Furthermore, the newly launched brand is also using the power of digital in its marketing strategies.
“In today’s day and age where even established brands can’t ignore the power of digital, we embrace the same in totality. We will go heavy on influencers, PR and social media presence. The idea is not simple. We will not have anyone speak on the brand until they have experienced it for themselves. Sampling activity through social media is being planned to drive believability for nothing speaks as powerfully as the product in itself,” says Ankit Daga.
The Road Ahead
The Indian personal and home care market has seen an upward trend in the post-pandemic era and the major reasons for this growth are the modernization and growth in the number of Indian consumers and their exposure to global markets. While the pandemic did make things challenging but there sure was a potential market waiting to be tapped and the co-founders decided to launch the brand at a right time with all the right ingredients.
“We have experienced the pandemic blues and the only way that we can combat that is advance planning – be it for production or campaign. We have started working in advance to the tune that pandemic setbacks don’t affect us in a big way. Alongside, we have embraced the start-up culture of being truly agile. Our all-women team is no less than a powerhouse to churn out ideas overnight and deliver. We have an extensive range in our NPD stage. Baby Care is due to come this year followed by an extension of Home Care, Personal Care, and Mama Care. With extensive scientific research and development, the brand has combined safety and efficacy to offer a range of products that are inspired by nature to promote cleaner, healthier and safer homes. By replacing the use of strong, residual chemical, products from the PUER range are crafted to harness the goodness of nature to build better homes, better products, better people, and ultimately, a better planet,” concludes Ankit Daga.