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Estée Lauder and Nykaa launch incubator to support Indian beauty entrepreneurs

By Danielle Wightman-Stone


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Business |Beauty

Image: Beauty&You / Estée Lauder and Nykaa

Estée Lauder has teamed up with Nykaa, one of India’s leading omnichannel beauty and lifestyle retailers, to launch an incubator to discover, spotlight, and propel the next generation of Indian beauty brands.

The ‘Beauty&You India’ incubator, aims to help founders, innovators, and creators grow their businesses holistically by identifying brand goals, achieving scale ambitions, and curating product portfolios that speak to a new generation of consumers in the Indian market.

The two companies are looking to accelerate and support the beauty start-up ecosystem in the country and are calling on all India-focused companies and entrepreneurs who are looking to build upon India’s holistic beauty and wellness practices to apply to the incubator by September 30.

Applications must address unmet needs in the beauty industry, including skincare, make-up, haircare, bodycare, fragrance and home fragrance.

Shana Randhava, vice president, new incubation ventures at The Estée Lauder Companies (ELC), said in a statement: “With its incredibly vibrant economy and cutting-edge start-up community, India represents an exciting opportunity for beauty creators and innovators. Our vision is for Beauty&You to harness the entrepreneurial energy in India to advance next-generation beauty brands by presenting opportunities that help put brands on a long-term, sustainable growth path.

“Beauty&You is inspired by the core values and collaborative culture that ELC and Nykaa share. We believe we have a responsibility to share our experiences with the next generation of founders and we hope Beauty&You will be a catalyst for Indian entrepreneurs to fuel their passion, brand, and mission.”

New beauty incubator Beauty&You India calls for founders and innovators to apply

Beauty&You will select winners for both pre-launch and in-market premium beauty concepts in November 2022, with each award recipient having access to ELC and Nykaa relationships and expertise across the beauty ecosystem to nurture their emerging ideas that amplify Indian voices.

All incubator recipients will also receive masterclasses on what it takes to build a sustainable beauty brand from leading global experts, alongside amplification on ELC and Nykaa’s platforms, and distribution support on how to scale and reach consumers at a local and global level. There will also be an opportunity to access Nykaa’s expansive omnichannel reach.

In addition, the incubator will offer financial support, with the total prize pool of 500,000 US dollars geared to support the “most innovative, inspiring, and breakthrough ideas”.

Anchit Nayar, chief executive of beauty for Nykaa e-commerce, added: “Nykaa's emergence as a leading consumer technology platform over the past several years is an outcome of an incredibly vibrant digital India that has spurred innovation and created an entrepreneurial ecosystem that is best in class globally.

“Now it is a chance for us to give back to the ecosystem by fostering the next generation of entrepreneurs in the beauty and lifestyle verticals. Beauty&You is an opportunity for us to identify and nurture talented founders to build truly unique consumer brands for the Indian consumer, and potentially for the world.”

Winners will be selected by a panel of experts from the world of beauty, fashion, media, and technology, including Shana Randhava and Anchit Nayar, as well as Katrina Kaif founder of Kay Beauty, Sabyasachi Mukherjee founder and chief executive of Sabyasachi and Samarth Bedi executive director of Forest Essentials.

Estee Lauder
Estée Lauder Companies