Headquartered in New Delhi and founded in 2002, Kama Ayurveda offered a range of traditional and holistic treatments for beauty and wellness, including night serums, hair treatments and brightening face oils. Sitting at the more premium end of the market, all products used pure, natural and organic ingredients and were largely vegetarian and vegan.
Puig had held a minority stake in the Indian company since 2019.
The move to acquire a majority stake largely stemmed from the Puig’s desire to strengthen its foothold in the Indian market, according to the company announcement. Under the deal, Puig said it would continue to “boost the brand’s leadership in the Indian market” where Kama Ayurveda already operated 54 stores across the country, aiming to help increase this to 60 by the end of 2022.
India ‘incredibly exciting’ for Puig
Marc Puig, chairman and CEO of Puig, said: “India represents an incredibly exciting opportunity for Puig, and with this investment we will continue our strategy of consolidating Kama Ayurveda’s strong domestic presence and of pursuing compelling opportunities in key markets abroad.”
The CEO said the move was especially exciting given how Kama Ayurveda was now a “leading brand in India” that had earned the loyalty of millions of beauty consumers looking for sustainable, plant-based skin care and lifestyle products.
Vivek Sahni, co-founder and CEO of Kama Ayurveda, said: “We are proud to be writing this new chapter in our successful partnership with Puig, which has helped accelerate Kama Ayurveda’s growth and expansion across India. By leveraging the wealth of Puig experience in nurturing founders and growing global beauty and skin care brands, together we will bring the experience of authentic Ayurvedic beauty and wellness to new audiences.”
A global boost for Kama Ayurveda
Under the deal, Puig said would support global expansion of Kama Ayurveda – notably bringing the beauty and wellness brand into the UK in early 2023.
“With a sophisticated online presence and strong domestic brand recognition, Kama Ayurveda is ideally positioned to take its products to the global stage,” Puig said.
Clotilde Drapé, beauty and personal care global analyst at Mintel, said the majority stake made sense given trends in today’s beauty market.
“Not only does Kama Ayurveda’s brand positioning benefit from strong appeal to local India consumers, it’s also a brand that could bode well in Western markets thanks to the growing trend of wellness and holistic beauty,” Drapé told CosmeticsDesign-Europe.
According to Mintel GNPD [Global New Product Development] data, products with an Ayurveda positioning in Europe’s beauty and personal care market grew 36.8% between 2018 and 2021.
In India, Drapé said the deal would see Puig take on a “competitive stance” in the domestic market and also align with interest and movement here – Estée Lauder, for example, recently launched an incubator for Indian beauty entrepreneurs in partnership with beauty and wellness e-commerce platform Nykaa.
Puig beyond fragrances
The majority stake acquisition also pushed Puig “outside of its traditional fragrance portfolio and into the world of wellness”, according to the analyst.
And this was something the Spanish firm had been working on for some time already. In January 2021, Puig carved out a dedicated derma division featuring its Uriage and Apivita brands and Puig’s 50% stake in Spanish skin care firm Isdin. This newly carved out derma division made Puig the third largest player in Europe in the sector of dermo-cosmetic products for sale in pharmacies and formed part of the company’s wider growth plans that aimed to generate €3bn in sales by 2023 and more than €4bn by 2025.