First ever Halal cosmetics in India by two Jain Sisters
Ecotrail Personal Care, a start-up by sisters Mauli and Grishma Teli, is the only company in India that makes halal cosmetics. Launched their brand ‘Iba Halal care’ a year back in Ahmedabad, they are now eyeing International Markets.
It all started when Mauli, 33, who holds a masters degree in pharmaceutical engineering from the University of Michigan, started playing with the idea of starting something of her own on her return to India from the US. Together with her sister Grishma, who armed with a degree in biotechnology from the University of Houston had already done some courses in cosmetics development, Mauli hired a professional agency to conduct a market research across cities like Ahmedabad, Delhi, Mumbai and Kozhikode.
“Our research showed that there is a latent demand for halal products in the cosmetics space, and we decided to tap this need gap,” Teli says.
“We not only had to use ingredients that are natural, but also adhere to halal guidelines of not using fermented products. The entire supply chain behind our products uses halal ingredients. For example, if a supplier is giving us a raw material that uses beeswax, we cannot use it, as it has an animal source. We have to think of an alternative,” Teli explained.
The products, as well as the manufacturing practice and the manufacturing site (at Changodar near Ahmedabad) are certified by the Halal India Authority. The certification is up for renewal every year.
Teli sisters came up with an idea of using coconut butter instead of Pig fat which is one of the common ingredients for lipsticks these days.
“Our products are vegan, cruelty-free and devoid of any harsh chemicals like sulphates, gelatin, carmine etc,” she claims.
Iba may be competition free in India at the moment but in foreign markets it is bound to face tough competition against popular brands like Amara Halal and Crescent Soaps. the halal market comprising food, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics and services is estimated to be around $1.62 trillion and it is estimated to touch $2.47 trillion in 2018. Of this, the cosmetics segment is currently valued at around $26 billion, and is expected to grow to $39 billion by 2018.
According to Teli sisters the current market in India for Halal cosmetics is around 5-6 billion Rupees. With 15% of its population Muslim, India itself is a huge market. Moreover, the market potential does not restrict to one community alone; halal has an appeal for everyone, especially a steadily growing crop of consumers looking for natural products. Iba’s clientele comprises of a healthy mix of Muslim and Non Muslim customers.Teli says that it is a 50:50 mix and the age group ranges between 18 to 30 years.
Having already tapped e-commerce sites of Amazon and Flipkart for its products, Iba Halal Care, which currently runs two stores in Ahmedabad and a franchise store in Aurangabad, plans to add one store every month henceforth. First up on the list are cities in Gujarat, like Vadodara and Surat, followed by a store in Chennai by September, and one in Lucknow in near future.
Ecotrail has already invested 8-10 crore and looking for an investor to come on board for further expansion to other cities of India in next five years.
Original article published on Business Standard
Image source: ibahalalcare.com
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