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Karan Nangia
Karan Nangia
An IGNOU alumni and travel enthusiast, Karan is an Editorial Assistant at Images Group

ABH’s journey in India: Achievements beyond the brow

Over the last 25 years, the global beauty brand Anastasia Beverly Hills has experienced exponential growth, and its products are now available in over 2,000 stores across more than 30 countries. In India, the brand is available on major e-commerce platforms, including Myntra, Nykaa, and Sephora, and it has expanded its offline presence with stores in metro cities like Delhi and Mumbai.

Anastasia Soare left her home country of Romania and moved to the United States in 1989. She began her career as an esthetician in Beverly Hills, California, where she was responsible for facial and body waxing. She conceived the idea of applying the “Golden Ratio Method” to create the perfect brows. Since the salon where she was working was not convinced, she decided to launch her own salon. In 1997, she opened her flagship salon, and in 2000, she introduced a first-of-its-kind product line devoted to eyebrows. This is how the global beauty brand, Anastasia Beverly Hills (ABH), was born.

Later, Soare became known as the “Eyebrow Queen” in the US and is arguably considered one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the beauty industry. In 2019, she appeared on Forbes’ billionaires list when she sold a minority stake in her cosmetics brand to TPG Capital at a reported $3 billion valuation.

ABH has grown exponentially and is now available in more than 30 countries, with over 2,000 stores. It has a prominent presence on all major social media platforms with a combined following of more than 19 million, and it has partnered with famous figures like Kim Kardashian and Jennifer Lopez. The brand is known for its revolutionary eyebrow products and high-quality makeup, offering a diverse range of multifaceted options, including popular products like the Brow Wiz, Brow Pomade, and Brow Freeze, which have become bestsellers in the brand’s extensive brow collection. After achieving worldwide success, ABH finally entered the subcontinent.

Anastasia Beverly Hills: The Brow Journey
Sanjali Giri, Vice President – International Brands & Retail, House Of Beauty

Indian Market
ABH first entered the Indian market in 2019 through an exclusive partnership with beauty retailer Sephora. However, in 2021, House of Beauty took over the brand’s representation and distribution in India. “ABH’s journey in India has been truly remarkable, and we aim to establish a strong and stable position for the brand, ensuring continued strong performance in the coming years,” says Sanjali Giri, Vice President of International Brands Distribution and Retail at House of Beauty.

Various factors, such as the increasing demand for international beauty brands, a growing young consumer base, rising awareness, higher disposable income, and increased spending capacity, were cited by Giri as reasons for ABH’s venture into the dynamic Indian market.

After partnering with House of Beauty, ABH opened its first flagship store in India. It recently signed Malaika Arora as its first brand ambassador in India as part of its 25th-anniversary celebration. “To create a stronger connection with the Indian audience, on the occasion of our 25th anniversary, we launched Malaika Arora as the brand ambassador endorsing our cult brow category and celebrating the launch of our latest Cosmos eyeshadow palette,” says Giri.

“We experienced exponential business growth in the initial year of our operation with House of Beauty and continue to grow this year as well, with strong double-digit growth. ABH remains dedicated to putting its best foot forward, ensuring a representation that resonates with the diverse Indian audience. We aim to steadily enhance awareness of the ABH brand in a robust manner, aligning our strategy with a long-term commitment to the Indian market,” she elaborates.

Footprint and Expansion
The brand follows a multi-channel approach in the Indian market, which enhances both visibility and revenue, says Giri. ABH has a strong online presence through various e-commerce platforms such as Nykaa, Boddess, Tira, Tata Cliq Luxe, Palette, and Myntra. It is also available offline at Sephora and SS Beauty stores. ABH’s virtual consultations and try-ons are facilitated through omnichannel partnerships with various retail partners. Many of their products fall into the vegan category, she adds.

Regarding offline presence, Giri states, “Although ABH primarily operates as a distribution-focused brand at present, India is the only country with ABH exclusive retail boutiques (Mall of India, Noida, and Phoenix Palladium, Mumbai) to create a holistic brand experience and showcase the brand in its full glory.”

She emphasizes that their strategy aims to reach all ABH consumers irrespective of location, and they are doing so through an extensive online presence and partnerships. Their offline expansion is curated to reach different tiered cities where their consumers are, via beauty specialty retailers like Nykaa, which has an extensive offline market presence as well. Their partnership with Tira also allows consumers to experience ABH brow expertise through exclusive Brow Bars in all Tira stores, which is expanding rapidly, she adds.

Anastasia Beverly Hills: The Brow JourneyBest Performing Products
The brand, founded on its pioneering and patented Golden Ratio Method for eyebrow shaping, is known for its cult eyebrow products and boasts an unparalleled array of 25-30 SKU assortments with clear market winners like Brow Wiz, Dip Brow Pomade, and Brow Freeze.

 

Regarding the availability of their products in the Indian market, Giri says, “Anastasia Beverly Hills has a well-rounded category mix with a strong eyebrow category and an equally strong face and lips category, with 38% and 20% mix, respectively. Some of the most loved products are Luminous Foundation, Magic Touch Concealer Foundation, lip gloss, lipsticks, and loose powder.”

ABH has gained prominence among artists and professionals with its iconic eye palettes, a significant contributor to the brand’s business. When combined, brows and eyes account for a substantial 40-42% of the brand’s overall business. A pivotal aspect of ABH’s global portfolio is its commitment to inclusivity. The diverse range of shades and products is rigorously tested across various skin tones, ensuring comprehensive coverage and suitability for different demographics. When curating products for specific countries like India, ABH strives to offer a range that caters to the diverse skin tones prevalent in that region, Giri maintains.

Anastasia Beverly Hills: The Brow JourneyFuture
The allure of the beauty industry has attracted many investors and new brands to the large and untapped Indian market. The Indian Beauty and Personal Care (BPC) market size reached US$ 26.3 Billion in 2022. According to a report by IMARC Group, it is expected to reach US $38 billion by 2028, exhibiting a growth rate (CAGR) of 6.45% during 2023-2028.

India presents a compelling market for beauty products, particularly in the color cosmetics segment, Giri says. According to her, the beauty industry in India has witnessed a substantial surge in recent years and is propelled by multiple factors that make India an attractive market for both domestic and international beauty brands.

As people become more conscious of their appearance and trends, the demand for makeup and eyebrow products has significantly risen. The premium cosmetics market is growing at a CAGR of 14%, with categories like face and lips seeing the strongest share and growth. As a brand, we are also observing the same trends. Brows are still a very niche segment in India, but they are rapidly growing, she asserts.

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