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Viah Beauty grew at 300% M-o-M in just 5 months: Co-founder David Pritchett

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Mannu Mathew
Mannu Mathew
With over four years of experience, Mannu Mathew specializes in business journalism with a focus on technology, the retail sector, D2C, and E-commerce brands. He is working as the Assistant Editor for India Retailing and Images Retail Magazine.

The five-month-old D2C beauty brand also boasts of a monthly repeat customer rate of 40%, said co-founder David Pritchett

New Delhi: In just five months since it was launched in February 2024, D2C skincare brand Viah Beauty is growing at a rate of around 250%-300% month on month (M-o-M).

“This number is accelerating as we amplify our highly targeted ad campaigns. The next short-term milestone for Viah is 100 orders per day,” said David Pritchett co-founder, Viah Beauty.

Viah develops skincare formulations using globally sourced ingredients. The company sells skincare products like moisturizers, serums, toners, cleansers, sunscreens, eye care, and other products in the price range between Rs 549 to Rs 1,699 on average.

It is present on its D2C platform and Amazon and is in the process of expanding its online presence through other channels.

“We will introduce quick commerce options once we have further enhanced brand awareness. Our focus is entirely on online sales whilst we explore all options to expand our retail channels digitally and physically,” added Pritchett.

The company works primarily on Shopify, which enables managing the online store.

“We utilise a variety of other platforms for different applications to enhance our operations. We use WhatsApp and email marketing tools for effective customer engagement, and specialized platforms for managing customer reviews to maintain transparency and trust. We use Shiprocket to streamline our delivery system, ensuring timely and reliable shipping,” said Pritchett.

In addition to the company’s tech stack, Pritchett speaks to Indiaretailing about its marketing strategy, expansion plans, and more. Edited Excerpts…
Tell us about the company’s journey.

Viah has been two years in the making. We envisioned bringing to market a beauty brand that focuses especially on Indian skin concerns. After months of extensive research, product development, and testing, we developed manufacturing and distribution capabilities in India. We soft-launched Viah in late February 2024.

We sold almost 10 times more than we had envisaged. If our sales trajectory continues, we expect to leave the financial year FY (2024-2025) with a very conservative annual recurring revenue (ARR) of Rs 3.5 crore.

What sets you apart from the sea of other beauty products?

We conducted extensive research and engaged a research and development (R&D) specialist with over 30 years of experience to identify the most effective ingredients and formulations.

Our focus continues to be on creating formulations that are uniquely enriched with the world’s finest botanicals.  Each active ingredient needs to be clinically proven and make a real difference to one’s skin. We will never compromise on the ingredients we use. Additionally, through consumer research, we identified key pain points and formulated a complete range of products to address these issues, including multi-corrective solutions. Our products are not only highly effective but also come in opulent packaging, offering consumers a complete and luxurious skincare experience.

Good performing products… 

Our standout product so far is the high-performance moisturiser, which accounts for nearly 20% of our sales.  Other standout products include skin-tightening serum.

Are you looking at jumping into any new category?

In the pipeline for this year is a range of luxury body care and fragrances. We are planning to venture into new categories, maintaining our core mission of bridging the gap between international and Indian products.

In the pipeline for this year is a range of luxury body care and fragrances
Please share insights on fundraises

We wanted to invest our own money up to and including the business seeding phase. A larger investment is now required to fully realise Viah’s potential.  We are connecting with potential investment partners.

What’s your omnichannel approach?

Currently, our focus is entirely on the online space. Our primary goal is to enhance our online reach and provide a seamless shopping experience through our website and Amazon. We are actively working on adding more e-commerce channels to expand our accessibility and meet our customers where they are. By focusing on the online platform, we aim to ensure convenience, efficiency, and a wide range of choices for our customers, while continuously exploring new digital avenues to grow our brand presence.

How do you work on customer acquisition?

We are constantly creating media content that keeps attracting new customers to our young brand. Our monthly repeat customer rate is approximately 40%. Our growth rate and return on ad spends (ROAS), together with our repeat customer rates, are encouraging based on a modest amount of advertising spend.

How do you ensure sustainability?

One significant step we’ve taken is the use of glass packaging for many of our products, which is not only recyclable but also helps in reducing plastic waste.

Our approach to sustainability includes sourcing ingredients ethically and responsibly, ensuring that our production processes are cruelty-free, and adhering to environmentally friendly practices. We are continually seeking ways to reduce our carbon footprint, from optimizing our supply chain to supporting sustainable initiatives.

How do you ensure a good customer experience? 

We have developed a robust communication system to keep our customers informed and engaged. Customers receive constant notifications about their order status, shipping updates, and any promotional offers, ensuring they are always in the loop.

The company works primarily on Shopify, which enables managing the online store.

To address queries and provide instant support, we have integrated chatbots on WhatsApp. For more complex queries, our dedicated customer service team is always ready to assist, ensuring that all customer concerns are resolved promptly and satisfactorily.

Additionally, we follow up with personalized post-purchase communication via email, tips for getting the best results, invitations to provide feedback and a newsletter.

Any tech innovations…

One of the major areas we are exploring is the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI) for consumer interaction—using AI-driven solutions that provide personalized skincare recommendations based on individual skin profiles.

What’s on the expansion plan? 

We plan to expand in the Indian market for the next 36 to 48 months, then go international.

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