mCaffeine, India's first caffeinated personal care brand, was launched in 2016 by Tarun Sharma, Vikas Lachhwani, Vaishali Gupta, Mohit Jain, and Saurabh Singhal.
The brand focuses on making innovative personal care products for Millennials. The D2C brand has sold more than 10 million products in just 5 years of launch. Currently, the products of the brand are available at 18,000 pin codes across India.
The Journey of the Brand
Elaborating on the journey of the brand, Tarun Sharma, Co-founder, mCaffeine said, “India has always been an ingredient-rich kind of a country and if you ask anyone in India about skincare, it is always driven by natural ingredients like curd, orange, etc. Similarly, coffee also has been a part of that list, however, we are more excited about the psychological connection of coffee with the consumers.”
“We saw a gap in the market as there were not many lifestyle brands in the personal care segment which consumers were proud of using in their daily lives. And coffee or caffeine is a miracle ingredient that was not being used as a main ingredient in the products despite the fact it benefits both skin and hair. So, we thought of combining these both and introduced mCaffeine,” he further added.
Currently, the brand has a presence in 4 major categories - Face Care, Hair Care, Body Care, and Lip Care. There are about 55 products in the portfolio so far and the brand plans to further launch 15-20 products in the next year. The products of the brand are available on all major shopping portals namely – Amazon, Nykaa, and Flipkart, and sell through its own e-commerce portal.
The brand is currently present in 12,000 stores in the general and modern trade. These stores include large retailers such as Wellness Forever and Health & Glow. It plans to expand its reach to 25,000 stores in India by the end of the next year, and 1,00,000 stores in the next five years.
“Our biggest channel in terms of retail is our D2C platform. However, we plan to have our own stores in the future, but at present, we are more focussed on expanding our offline presence through modern trade and general trade outlets,” he asserted.
Betting Big on Social Commerce
The brand has a strong presence on the social media platforms like Instagram where with the help of influencer marketing, it diverts the consumers to its own website.
“Social commerce is the future of e-commerce and at present, it is at a very nascent stage in India. It gives you the ability to create far more value over and above what you create.
Apart from this, the brand is also betting big on technology. The very existence of the company revolves around data. The brand has embedded technology right from setting up the website to easing the entire consumer journey including pre and post-experience.
At this point with such vast beauty and personal care market and ever-changing consumer needs, it gets tough to make a place for yourself in an industry that is this highly competitive. But as a brand, mCaffeine has been able to stand out because of its unique approach.
“Needless to say, innovation has been our core idea for the development. Right from day 1, we’ve believed in the idea that we need to be ‘differentiated’. Having launched a product like Coffee Body Scrub just in the beginning, which was one of its kind and had passed the matrices of efficacy and experience, we have always wanted to make the best. I would say, we understand the Indian consumers better than any of our competitors. The latest testimony of this is our patent-pending India’s first coffee bean-shaped bathing bar that launched just last week. The response has been phenomenal and the entire month’s stock has been sold out in just about 4-5 days. Thus, it can be said that innovation has always been at the forefront and has been well mapped keeping in mind our consumer’s needs and demands. We keep up with their trends and speak to our consumers on a regular basis, thus we are able to create the best for them with the best of the ingredients,” he explained.
Making International Coffee Day Special
To make this International Coffee Day special, the brand has announced the launch of the biggest Body Care launch ever.
mCaffeine has been launching innovative products on International Coffee Day for a few years now, to the extent that this day has become synonymous with the brand’s identity. It’s only fitting that this year it is even grander. The brand has come up with its biggest body care launch, ever.
Explaining the significance of their biggest body care launch and International Coffee Day for mCaffeine Sharma said, “Coffee is not just a beverage for us, it’s an emotion that helps us connect with our consumers. And, by making International Coffee Day bigger for our Caffeinators, we want to strengthen our bond. Our biggest body care launch on 27th September has given the customers 9 new ways to celebrate their Coffee connect on this special day. International Coffee Day celebrates Coffee admirers and so does mCaffeine. With this launch, we are aiming to establish International Coffee Day as something people would look forward to.”
The brand has unveiled 9 body care products that are set to revolutionize showers with their unique presence. mCaffeine has added Coffee Shower Oil Body Wash, Hydrating Coffee Body Serum, Coffee Body Shimmer, Coffee Whipped Cream Body Wash, Coffee Bath Bomb, Coffee Bathing Shower Jelly, Coffee Bath Salt, All in One Coffee Body Mask, and Assorted Coffee Bathing Soaps - Pack of 3 to their already popular product portfolio. As per the brand, these products are a collection of pre-shower, shower, and post-shower essentials crafted to transform mundane shower routines into an indulging experience.
mCaffeine has raised approx $41 million across three funding rounds and is profitable on every unit sold. Having a current GMV run rate of Rs 540 crore, the brand’s 90 percent of the sales are driven via online portals and 10 percent offline.
“45 percent of the online sales come from our own D2C website while the rest are from e-commerce platforms. We aim to strengthen our offline presence and increase our sales over the next 4-6 years,” Sharma stated.
“We plan to launch 15-20 products by the end of 2023. We will also be expanding to 12 countries across the globe in the next 3 years,” Sharma added.
mCaffeine also plans to acquire small brands from the beauty industry (across national and international markets). The brand, which has been growing more than 100 percent year-on-year, plans to enter the USA and UAE markets this year.
“Putting an Indian-origin, caffeine-infused, 100 percent vegan, cruelty-free, and natural brand on a global map was always on the cards for us, as we are cognizant of how fast our global customer base is expanding. Anticipating the growing needs of a worldwide audience requires us to augment our innovation capacity and fasten new product development while ensuring environmental stewardship so that we can create offerings that are universal in appeal to ‘Bharat’ as much as ‘NYC’. To enable us to achieve this goal, we plan to absorb/acquire small brands from the beauty industry (across national and international markets) using mCaffeine framework to strengthen our efforts,” he added.
Going ahead, the brand is also planning to foray into new categories like beauty and makeup.