Nykaa Founder Falguni Nayar Becomes India's Wealthiest Self-Made Female Billionaire

As per a report,  Nykaa earned revenues of Rs 1,860 crore in the financial year 2020.

Charvi Kathuria
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falguni Nayar success story
Falguni Nayar Success Story: According to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Falguni Nayar has become India's wealthiest self-made female billionaire. She owns about half of Nykaa which is now worth about $6.5 billion as shares of the firm surged as much as 89% when they started trading on Wednesday.

A few months ago, FSN E-Commerce Ventures, Nykaa's parent entity, had become India's first woman-led unicorn to hit the stock exchange. Nykaa is a woman-led unicorn offering 4,000 beauty, personal care and fashion brands through its website, app and 80-odd brick-and-mortar stores.

Here's what you need to know about Falguni Nayar.

Falguni Nayar is an alumna of Sydenham College of Commerce and Economics.

She pursued her post- graduation from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad with a specialisation in finance.

After this, she joined a consultancy company called AF Ferguson & Co. She was a consultant there and spent working eight years here.

After her successful stint there, she joined Kotak Securities which is Kotak Mahindra’s institutional equities division. She worked there for 19 years and became the Managing director there.


Launch of Nykaa

Nayar after leading this top Indian investment bank, founded Nykaa in 2012. Interestingly, she did that just months before turning 50.

She had a small team working for her within a month of Nykaa's launch.

When asked about her choice of space, she said in an interview that she chose beauty and wellness space as it didn't have much competition at that time. She, however, revealed that it was a bit difficult for her to grow into that space.

Nykaa now has 80 stores across the country and has around 1500 brands in her portfolio. Bobbi Brown, L’Occitane and Estee Lauder are some of the luxury labels that are a part of her portfolio.

As per a report,  Nykaa earned revenues of Rs 1,860 crore in the financial year 2020.


It became the only profitable unicorn that went public.

Nayar bagged the ‘Businessperson of the Year 2019’ by Vogue India and the ‘EY Entrepreneur of The Year 2019 – Start-up Award’ by Ernst and Young.

She was also the winner of SheThePeople's Digital Women Awards in 2015.

Lessons learnt from Entrepreneurship

In an interview with SheThePeople, she had said that during her investment banking years, she was inspired by people creating businesses and building a brand and wanted to build a brand along with her team. "I had to just get over the hump of taking a risk. I am glad I took it because I am really happy with this entrepreneurship journey though it is very different from a business leader journey.", she said.

She also added how confluence of three factors made her entrepreneurship journey possible. First was the digital world which offered the opportunity to build a brand with a small budget. Second factor was the popularity of e-commerce as a way of purchasing and selling of products. Third was her belief that multi brand retail in beauty was the way to go.


Talking about the lessons that entrepreneurship taught her, she said, "Entrepreneurship makes you humble because at every stage you feel that there is so much that needs to be learnt. Entrepreneurship has many low days and down days. Entrepreneurs need to have the courage to not get affected by that and keep moving ahead with renewed energy and passion."

She also explained how single-minded dedication and renewed energy everyday was critical for an entrepreneur to succeed.

Suggested Reading

Banker to Entrepreneur – Falguni Nayar

Who Is Falguni Nayar? The Founder and CEO of Of Nykaa Eyeing An IPO

Falguni Shankar Gaidhane’s knack for creating new things turned her into an entrepreneur

women entrepreneurship falguni nayar Nykaa Founder Female Billionaire Sydenham College of Commerce and Economics.