Natural and organic products in India have started experiencing a boom as conscious consumers are taking them on a large scale. Consumers today are more careful to choose products that are natural, chemical-free, locally fragrant and environmentally friendly.
Amrita Gaddam began to experience this new “organic wave” while studying for an MBA at Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Bengaluru. Amrita, who lives in a hostel away from her home in Rajahmundry, Andhra Pradesh, was troubled by skin care and hair care problems, something she has never had to face at home.
Desiring to take better care of himself, he asked his mother to send him his homemade self-care product. Her mother had always used her father’s Ayurvedic recipes, which were an Ayurveda expert, prepared for more than 30 years, to make homemade options for hair oils, facial and hair cleansing.
All these products were liked by her friends living in their hostels and were getting favourable results.
“Since many people were liking it, it was always on my mind that I should take it to a big level,” Amrita says.
Considering the popularity and effectiveness of these homemade products, her childhood dreams combined with entrepreneurship, Amrita launched the organic hair care and skincare brand in May 2019, Tribe Concepts Introduced.
When he thought about the idea while in college, he opted to join Atria Convergence Technologies through campus placements to gain experience. While working at the company, he did research using his father’s formulations and mother’s help.
He quit his job and along with his sister Apuropa Gaddam, a doctor and Nitya Mohan, founded Trib Concepts, which started commercial operations with a manufacturing unit in Rajahmundry and head office in Bengaluru.
With an investment of Rs 20,000, he started operating in an old building owned by his father in Rajahmundry. Amrita debuted her product line with 90 Days of Miracle Hair Oil which got her much attention and positive reviews online
However, being an entrepreneur has its own set of challenges.
From designing products to hiring the right people to convincing potential customers at the quality, quantity and price point, and finding the right vendors for packaging and logistics, Amrita remembers that it was initially a trying time. Was.
Although the entrepreneur says that the core team consists of co-founders and two others, his mother Dr Kamalanjali and Vamshi Krishna learned work to find solutions to every challenge that comes their way.
Want to do something different
During the organic boom, Amrita came to know that it is important to differentiate from other products.
“Organic and natural are being used loosely, and everyone is coming home with DIY products. Our products are different because they are made using my father’s professional knowledge of Ayurvedic practice. Even a 10–20 percent change in a component matters a lot. ”
Another difference is that all products are either powder-based or oil-based and are made from plant-based materials only.
“When I was building a startup, I was very particular about getting the right content from the right people,” says Amrita. This is why soaps used in Shikakai and most of its products include six key ingredients purchased from the tribal society living in the forest of Rampachhodavaram near their hometown.
Apart from being preservative-free and chemical-free, Amrita pointed out that the products use ancient and forgotten Ayurvedic forest-based ingredients such as Bakuchi, Rasna, Manjistha, which would have made Trib Concepts a truly “Made in India” brand. is.
With stability as a core ethos and a zero-waste philosophy, the products are packaged in reusable steel tins and glass bottles.
The brand’s products are available on its website and e-commerce platforms such as Healthy Note and Mytara.
Business in the Corona era
The coronavirus epidemic has affected startups like most industries and businesses. Amrita says that in the first two months of the lockdown, sales were down by 80–90 percent. He also experienced financial pressure as he had to pay salaries to his 20-staff team.
Another challenge faced was the lack of startup raw material availability, packaging and delivery delays, which have forced some of its products to go out of stock. The epidemic has also delayed the launch of about 10 new products.
However, with the lockdown relaxed, he is happy that things are looking to improve. The orders are going back to pre-epidemic numbers and they have stepped up their digital marketing efforts with YouTube and Instagram influencers to make products more visible.
They believe that after the epidemic, startups will have to expand new sales channels with potential sales in the B2B market, giving solutions and offline presence through kiosks in stores and malls. Amrita expects Trib Concepts to grow with 100X growth in the next few months.