Melbourne-based Australian health, wellness, and natural skincare brand Swisse today announced its launch into the Indian market. Discerning Indian consumers will now have access to high-quality vitamins, supplements and skincare products from one of Australia’s largest vitamins, minerals and health supplements (VMHS) and skincare brands.
The launch in India coincides with Swisse’s 50th anniversary. The brand was unveiled at a special event in Mumbai this afternoon, led by Bollywood star Ms. Nushrat Bharucha.
From an Indian perspective in a country of 120 billion Indians out of which 60% are young millennials, the world’s largest millennial population, with very hectic lifestyles, and a lot of things to manage. Swisse coming in India at this point in time is just right as the millennials are just understanding the value of having good health, which is from a holistic point of view of wellness inside as wellness outside. The Indian market is at the cusp of awareness and the options are limited as the products you want to experiment with, quality and trust factor, there is a dearth of this in the Indian market in this category as well as in the beauty category. Swisse which is the core three values, which is premium, natural, and the power of science which the brand believes in, this entry will make a mark in the Indian wellness segment.
According to Gonul Serbest, CEO, Global Victoria, “It’s a pleasure to launch one of Australia’s largest brands in vitamins, minerals and health supplements in India. Swisse is based in the Australian state of Victoria and is a major contributor to the state’s highly successful exports in medical, pharmaceutical and nutraceutical products. The Victorian Government has proudly supported Swisse on its export journey and today’s launch is another outcome of our fantastic collaboration with this great Victorian company. Congratulations to Nick Mann, the Swisse team and their partners in India who have been instrumental in introducing Swisse to India.”
At the launch event, MediaNews4U spoke to Nick Mann, MD – Swisse Australia, and New Zealand.
Late entry into India
Swisse is a 50 years old company but for 45 or approximately of those years, we were only in Australia. Then we went into China, New Zealand, later into Italy and the Netherlands and Hungary and Singapore, so it’s only about 12 markets we are available. Just a maturation of the company, we got to a point in the scale where we were able to afford to launch into new markets, now here we are, and every market we’ve launched, and it’s been really successful. So we’re extremely optimistic about India as our next frontier. We as a brand are very digital-first and the kind of transformation digital has seen is only built in the last 10-12 years, so with E-Commerce growing at 50% plus YoY and the focus on digitization happening across India, that’s when I think from a market entry point we felt it was the right time to enter the Indian market.
Our brand rests on four pillars, premium, proven, aspirational and experiential. So we look around the world for the very best ingredients, as they’re not always found in Australia, for example, we get our blood oranges from Italy, we get our cranberries from Massachusetts, as an example, most of the products are ultimately made in Australia. So they’re very, very premium ingredients and goes thru a very stringent check as per Australia regulatory environment, make sure that they have the highest quality as well, we don’t touch anything unless it’s proven. It has to have the backing of either science or traditional evidence which is mandatory. Then we use big marketing to be a premium brand or make it very aspirational and we use celebrities a lot, we create a brand that’s a lifestyle that most consumers want to be part of, it’s been very, very successful around the world. The next is experiential. A lot of our marketing and our products have an element of experiential reality about it. We create almost like a club or an environment that people want to be part of. The consumers are not only buying these wonderful products, but they’re buying into the lifestyle as well.
Experiential Marketing in India
From a brand perception, we want to say that it revolves around the ingredients. Unless we bring the connection to the ingredients, we wouldn’t be able to create an experiential point of view, the launch and the kind of setup is to experience as to what Swisse is all about. We want to be digital-first and we are getting hugely into digital. It’s an eCommerce strategy that we’re set to do in India, our products are online and available on Amazon, Flipkart, Myntra. We are not going to go really heavy on a retail offline retail strategy. The stores we will open will be experience stores similar to the set up you are seeing here, full of nature, full of the goodness of the ingredients that are being used the consumer is seeing our products and sampling them the way we want them to. Other than this we are also looking into building conversations with E influencer’s and even if we participate in an event offline it has to eventually link back to digital amplification that needs to happen in an online format in some way. Even if it’s an out of home activity we are planning to do, there should be a clear call to action on the digital format that will be similar to everywhere in the world. So if we are sponsoring an event, even if it’s a sporting event that will sponsor will create Swisse zones around that where we can make smoothies with our products and immerse people in the ingredients that we use and just give them a little Swiss experience on the way through making a bit more interesting.
We have been interacting with all the key opinion leaders in the specific categories because we want to start the right kind of conversation its not about pushing your product but believing in fitness as a whole fitness is a lifestyle thing. It’s you can’t just go out and one day say I’m going to get into fitness and have the enthusiasm, it is a lifestyle choice. We are partnering with people all key opinion leaders who believe in the brand ethics, which is basically celebrating life every day, believing and believing in fitness, from the inside out perspective, it’s almost like beauty within and beauty outside. The way we build our brand in every market is we have global ambassadors. We have a series of global ambassadors and that gives us global consistency. But equally as important is the next layer down which is local ambassadors, they really drive that product message, interact with the brand. They post a lot on their own social channels to get that nice, big brand global field with the global ambassadors, but they’re less interacting with the product. They’re more about setting the kind of overall or the brand and then local parallels will bring it to life and talk more about the product.
This is my first time in India which is was always been on my bucket list. So I’m very glad to tick it off, India is just incredibly vibrant and beautiful with kind people around with a smile on their face and amazing food. From a business perspective it’s just a massive opportunity for global brands, just do the right things and invest in the local market. I think it’s important that we chose to set up our own team here, got our own office in Bangalore. We’ve employed our first three People before we’d sold anything, so we’re prepared to invest and put roots down invest in the local market, which I think is incredibly important.
Before launching we did a little survey in the Tier 1 metros and we realized that the consumers are moving towards the kind of the elements in terms of ingredients in what they eat, what they wear and what they use on their skin. It’s all about sustainable, organic, natural. These trends tell us how the market is becoming aware about these products. We believe that this was the right time for us to enter this market.