Vineeta Singh, Kaushik Mukherjee,co-founders, Sugar Cosmetics
It’s tough to make your mark in the crowded cosmetics market in India, dominated by the likes of L’Oréal, Unilever, and Estée Lauder Companies. If that wasn’t enough, there are local players such as Colorbar to deal with. Yet, in a span of six years, this husband-and-wife duo has managed to build a niche in the highly competitive market. Since its inception in 2015, the couple focussed on products that are more suited to the Indian skin tone, more pigmented to avoid any kind of allergy, and longer lasting. Today, Sugar has an omni-channel distribution network of 10,000 retail outletsacross 130 cities. It claims that at large-format retail chains such as Lifestyle, Shoppers Stop, and Health & Glow, Sugar is one of the top four cosmetics brands in terms of contribution to sales. Earlier this year, it raised $21 million in a Series C funding round led by Elevation Capital. Till date, Sugar has raised $35.5 million in funding. Singh, who studied at IIT Madras and IIM Ahmedabad, manages the whole show along with her husband, a BITS Pilani and IIM Ahmedabad alumnus. And together, they seem to be doing a pretty good job.