Indian Service Sector

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: In an age where a distinct premium is placed on looking and feeling good, the desire to be attractive is on the rise. Not surprising then that both men and women are seeking the services of beauticians, hairstylists and dermatologists to improve their looks. As this number swells, there is also a perceptible shift happening in the marketplace. The beauty services industry, largely unorganised and pegged at over Rs 12,000 crore by some observers (others peg it as low as Rs 2,000 crore), is slowly but steadily taking the organised route to do business. The emergence of players such as Marico’s Kaya Skin Clinic, Lakme Beauty Salon, VLCC, Shahnaz Husain Herbals, CavinCare’s Limelite and Green Trends, Keune and Jawed Habib Hair & Beauty can be attributed to this trend, say observers. According to industry estimates, the organised and semi-organised beauty services industry in the country is about Rs 1,500-Rs 1,600 crore (some peg it as high as Rs 6,000 crore). Clearly, the scope for conversion from unorganised to organised, is high, say observers. What’s more? The organised beauty segment is growing at about 25%-30% per annum, which only highlights how fast the rate of transformation is, say analysts. Says Vineet Gupta, chief executive officer, Jawed Habib Hair & Beauty, ‘‘In the next five years, there will be a marked shift from the unorganised to organised segments in the industry. This implies a turnaround for the business.’’ Price points of services rendered at the moment depend on the type of treatment and the provider offering the service, though the accent these days is on high-quality at a reasonable price. For instance, the average consumer spend in a Kaya Skin Clinic, Shahnaz Husain Herbal Salon, Lakme Beauty Salon or Limelite works out to about Rs 1,000 per month (Green Trends, in comparison, is Cavincare’s budget parlour targeted at the family, where the spend is about Rs 300 per month per person). Hair specialists such as Jawed Habib’s, on the other hand, may price its hair solutions at a higher level to that of its beauty services (Jawed Habib’s haircuts and styles, for instances, have a premium price tag, though beauty services are moderately priced). Keune, in contrast, which is a hair care brand from Holland, marketed by Brushman India through exclusive, company-owned, branded salons and retail outlets, has services mod- estly priced at about Rs 300-Rs 450 for men’s and women’s haircuts, while applying hair colour works out... hree years ago, Deepa Apte used to drop in at a beauty salon once a fortnight or once in three weeks. Apte, 26, a sales executive at a leading company here, says she does so regularly now because it's important to look good. Hundreds of others like Apte are visiting beauty salons pretty frequently - and business is booming. Lending credence to this, virtually every big company that has a presence in the salon business is on an expansion drive. Hindustan Lever Ltd [ Get Quote ], the country's largest consumer goods company, is looking at doubling the number of its Lakme Beauty Salons in a year, from the current 60. Baccarose, the company that distributes and markets premium lifestyle brands like Elizabeth Arden, Escade, Nina Ricci and Siedo, is planning to open Clarins beauty studios in Bangalore, Delhi [ Images ] and Chennai over the next two years. At present it has only one studio in Mumbai [ Images ]. Meanwhile, several companies that run beauty salons are setting up training institutes. HLL is setting up a Lakme Beauty Training academy in Mumbai, Chennai and New Delhi. L'Oreal Professional, a division of L'Oreal, has invested in four technical centres (in Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata [ Images ] and Bangalore). Schwarzkopf Professional, a division of Henkel Spic, has a training academy in Delhi. "Beauticians trained by the academy will get absorbed both in Lakme beauty salons and in the industry in general," a Lever spokesman says, explaining: "The future growth of the industry...
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