Launched in the year 2018, Super Smelly is the entrepreneurial brainchild of Dipali Mathur Dayal. Mother to an active growing up daughter, Dipali was on the perpetual quest to find safe personal care products for hertween and in the absence of safeoptions in India, she was obligated to use either ineffective babycare products or brands meant for adults. This was when she along with her friend, Milan Sharma (Co-Founder NKPL),set off on the journey of formulating India’s only Gen Z-focused brand of natural and toxin-free personal care solutions.
Super Smelly has raised an undisclosed amount from Singapore-based Lyte Investment Bank along and other angels. It plans to utilize the capital raised for marketing, research and product testing to further expand the product portfolio. In an exclusive conversation with Dipali Mathur Dayal, Co-Founder of Super Smelly talks about vision and future growth road map for the company.
How did Super Smelly start, and journey so far?
As the mother of a tween girl, I was deeply disturbed to realize that there are no options for natural and toxin-free personal care products in the country for adolescents and young adults. It was unfortunate that due to lack of suitable options,India’s youth were exposed to more harmful chemicals than any other age group.
This is where the idea for Super Smelly – India’s first and only 100% toxin-free, personal care products brand for Gen Z – was born. Super Smelly is certified and tested as Made Safe and 100% Toxin free by Safe Cosmetics Australia. The fragrances used in each of the Super Smelly products are IFRA compliant and are 100% cruelty-free with zero tolerance for animal testing.
Super Smelly offers spray deodorant sprays, moisturizers, face-washes, face packs, lip balms, among other products. The journey has been overwhelming, to say the least. We raised funds within the first seven months of operations. The round was led by Singapore-based Lyte Investment Bank along with other angels. This amount is being used to expand operations and create a stronger presence within the country.
As a digital-first brand, our products are available across all major online platforms such as Nykaa, Amazon, BigBasket, and Flipkart, along with major retail outlets in Delhi/NCR. The brand currently also retails its range across over 150 retail outlets in Delhi NCR.
Kindly shed light on your entrepreneurial journey. What were the initial challenges while lunching Super Smelly, and how did you counter the same?
As a successful private banker turned entrepreneur, there were several challenges during this rewarding journey:
- The first challenge was the decision itself - to quit a well-paying career in banking with the hope of traversing a more satisfying but uncertain path. There was only one way to overcome this challenge -by taking it!
- Being a women entrepreneur with no background in entrepreneurship brought its own set of judgments and prejudices – be it from vendors, manufacturers, architects or initial alliances.
- The ecosystem doesn’t expect a woman calling the shots and wearing a businesswoman’s hat. Hence, it takes some amount of getting used to for most. My mantra to overcome this challenge was the right mix of tenacity, persistence and assertion.
- Another challenge was to look after not one but three different ventures - Super Smelly, Bonjuz, and Magnifique - at the same time and put equal dedication to them. Being a mother to a little girl made the task more arduous than I ever thought. However, once you are disciplined and have strong family support, nobody can stop you to excel in whatever you are doing.
What is your assessment of GenZ personal care products market in India? According to you, what are the factors propelling growth in this segment?
Overall, the global personal care market is poised to grow from $500bn to $580bn by 2022. In India, this market will reach a whopping $18bn by the same time, growing at 35% YoY. GenZ currently makes up for the 50% of world population and 30% of Indian population.Interestingly millennials constitute of only 25% of the total population of the country currently which means the key drivers of consumption in the coming years for India will be GenZ.
Issues like climate change, pollution, animal cruelity, toxins in products are some of the biggest concers of this generation thereby leading to higher growth in niche segments within this category.
This is a generation of digital natives and the fact that they are completely clued on to the global trends leads to higher consumption of natural and toxin free solutions.
According to you, what are the biggest challenges as far as GenZ personal care retailing is concerned?
The biggest challenge with personal care retailing for GenZ is the fact that this generation is exposed to global trends very early on in life. They are very aware and won’t settle for anything that is not customized to their requirements as they value customization and niche offerings immensely. Thus any brand that is trying to catch their attention has to understand them very well.
Super Smelly has recently raised funds. How do you plan to utilize those funds? Going forward what are the plans to raise more funds?
We plan to utilize the capital raised for marketing, research and product testing to further expand the product portfolio.
At last, kindly highlight your growth plans?
Our focus is to establish online and offline distribution this year and grow our revenue by 10 times.