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BW Businessworld

Priyanka Chopra on Anomaly - A Nutrient-rich, Sustainable Brand

Entrepreneur, actress and philanthropist, Priyanka Chopra and Anchit Nayar, CEO - Beauty E-Commerce, Nykaa, speak to BW Businessworld, about Chopra’s haircare brand Anomaly and the collaboration with Nykaa

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What was the inspiration behind Anomaly?
I started getting interested in the business side of entertainment, which came first for me. Outside of that, Bumble was my first big investment, I brought it to India. 

About Anomaly, beauty has been a big part of my work and interesting to me, I started looking for areas where innovation could take place. In haircare, I found what we are offering with Anomaly, a nutrient-rich, sustainable brand that is affordable, did not exist. And, I was interested in creating and innovating in this space and upon research found that it could be done. 

We launched two years ago during the pandemic and today, we are with multiple retail partners in the US. And, have launched Nykaa here in India. 

How did the brand name come about ?
The name came from trying to find a word that describes the unique nature of the brand. I feel like every consumer is an anomaly and has different needs. I liked the sound of anomaly for the brand name. 

What’s unique about Anomaly?
It is sustainable. Our packaging is made out of trash - ocean-bound plastic and landfill. We spent so little on the packaging and therefore, could invest in our formulas. The idea was to democratise formulas and we figured the way to do that was to spend less on the packaging. We give you superior products that are nutrient-rich. In addition, we are clean, vegan and cruelty free and this is what makes Anomaly different. 

As a businesswoman, what can we expect from you in the near future?
There’s always more. I am someone who is creatively greedy, I like to keep my mind active. Anomaly was the product of the pandemic and of not being on a film set. There are many categories in business that one can explore. 

I am hoping that I can give Anomaly a big push. I hope to create access and awareness about the brand across the world. It is the first brand that I have founded and I am very proud of it. At the moment, my focus is the growth of the brand. 

Did being an actor help with the entrepreneurial journey or was it tougher?
Being an actor helped me with my beauty entrepreneurship because I always had the best products used on me. In that, I knew the best of the best, and knew the kind of products I would want to give to the consumer. 

Aside from that, being an entrepreneur is completely different from acting, one has to trust and learn from people. 

Please tell us about your upcoming movie projects.

I have a romantic comedy slated for next year. The show Citadel with Amazon Prime for next year. And, then there are others that are ongoing. 

Your favourite movie?
That’s a tough one. I would say Qayamat Se Qayamat Tak (1988), and Jerry Maguire (1996). 

How do you beat stress?
I totally switch off. My work hours are very clear. When I am done with work, I belong to my family. For me, work-life balance is very important.

“The launch defied our expectations, on the first day, one Anomaly product sold every seven seconds on the platform” Anchit Nayar, CEO - Beauty E-Commerce, Nykaa 

Please tell us about Nykaa’s collaboration with Anomaly.
It is a partnership. Nykaa’s mission is to democratise access to beauty and that means partnering with some of the best global brands and bringing them into the country. And giving the Indian consumer a chance to interact with the best the world has to offer. Anomaly fits perfectly into that mould. 

And, of course, Priyanka Chopra is a global icon and has made a seamless transition to becoming a beauty entrepreneur. We saw a lot of similarities between her and how we began  – a female-founded company, a professional banker turned entrepreneur. 

What makes Anomaly unique?
I would say it is the passion that Priyanka Chopra has brought to this project. She has been involved right from the start with the formulations, packaging etc. The other factors are the high-quality products and the pricing. 

How have the last few months been for Nykaa and Anomaly? 
There’s been a strong performance from us, which is apparent in our results. (The company reported a healthy increase in net profit for Q2FY23). There is an indication that consumer demand is picking up for retail and especially in the beauty segment. 

In India, beauty is still an under-penetrated category. There is so much more consumption that is yet to happen in the category. The timing for a brand like Anomaly to enter the Indian market is perfect. 

We launched Anomaly three months ago. The launch defied our expectations, on the first day, one Anomaly product sold every seven seconds on the platform. The brand certainly has legs, and our focus is to collaborate with Priyanka and help it grow. 

How does Nykaa stay top of mind with consumers?
There is no one thing. 

It is a lot of detailed-oriented work. It is not all about technology. A lot of it is old-school retail and consumer business best practices. 

To simplify, it comes down to being in tune with what the consumer wants. 

At Nykaa, we keep our ears close to the ground, we know our category well and we definitely know the consumer well.

A person who has inspired you the most, and why?
I would say it is my mother. I have had the chance to work with her closely over the last couple of years and the relationship has become that of a mentor and mentee. 

It is incredible to watch what she’s built. I learn something from her every day. 

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