How this entrepreneur quit his high paying job in Canada to start an Ayurvedic business

Ayurveda, which was once considered a “sunrise sector”, has now entered the everyday vocabulary of people. Until a few years ago, the market had only a handful of big names such as Baidyanath, Patanjali, Emami, and Hamdard, but today the scenario seems to be changing.

Not only more and more entrepreneurs are curious to explore this space, but the vast potential of this market has also compelled the Indian government to establish the AYUSH (Ayurveda, Yoga, Naturopathy, Unani, Siddha, Sowa-Rigpa and Homeopathy) Ministry promote Ayurveda and traditional medicines.

Launched in February 2020 by Ayush Aggarwal, Based in Faridabad Rasayanam is an Ayurvedic company making its way into this market.

Discovering Ayurveda

In a conversation with SMBShistoryAyush recalls that even though he had a well-paying job in Canada before 2020, the urge to start something of his own made him restless. He found in Ayurveda an interesting opportunity to explore his entrepreneurial dreams. He started working to start a business that made Ayurvedic products while still working full time, however, he quit two months later and returned to India.

“I wasn’t very happy with the products sold in India, so I started doing my own market research and even went to the Himalayas to explore the roots of Ayurveda,” he says.

So, Ayush invested Rs 30 lakh of his savings to start Rasayanam, which is started so far with no plans to raise funds anytime soon.

Rasayanam’s first product was Shilajit resin, which Ayush says is made from shilajit mined from the Gilgit mountain range in the Himalayas, and it took about a year of research to develop it. “Long considered a panacea in Ayurveda, shilajit is widely known to improve immunity and balance metabolism,” he explains.

Gradually, the company launched other products such as Kashmir saffron, Ajwa dates, Ashwagandha, Nano-curcumin, etc.

Combine modern science and traditional knowledge

Ayush says nano-curcumin is one of Rasayanam’s USPs and represents a combination of modern science and traditional knowledge.

Curcumin is the main active compound in turmeric and gives turmeric its antioxidant properties. “We use nanotechnology to extract pure curcumin, which makes it soluble in water and easy for the body to absorb,” says Ayush.

The products are sold between Rs 500-Rs 3,000, and the founder mentions that the pricing strategy was decided keeping in mind the prices offered by the competitors. Company clocks Rs 45 lakh of income per month, Ayush claims.

Ayush also expresses his confidence that the high prices will not deter consumers from buying the products because the quality they provide is better than that of its competitors.

Strategies to stand out

According to a report by ResearchandMarkets, the Indian Ayurveda market was valued at Rs300 billion in 2018 and is expected to reach Rs.710.87 billion by 2024, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16.06%, over the forecast period (2019-2024).

Ayush says he is aware that this market has now become “Deadly competitive”. He further adds that the aim of the company is to generate content to communicate the intention and vision of the brand to its potential customers and target audience.

“Education has been the biggest problem. Since there are so many brands in the market, people don’t know what to buy, ”he said, adding that the content produced by the Rasayanam team conveys information about the products, including their usefulness, benefits, etc.

“It is essential for us that the customer understands the product and its benefits before purchasing,” he adds.

An omnichannel approach

Rasayanam runs on a D2C (direct-to-consumer) strategy and sells on its website as well as on e-commerce platforms such as Amazon and Flipkart.

Ayush also points out that while Delhi and Mumbai are its main markets, the brand is in high demand among towns and small towns in Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Arunachal Pradesh, etc. He also adds that the company also plans to sell its products through high-end Ayurvedic doctors and stores.

As people have become more health conscious amid the pandemic, the crisis has played a major role in accelerating awareness of Ayurvedic products and boosting their uptake. Ayush claims that the company is 20 percent growth per month this year, and forecasts 90 percent revenue growth this fiscal year.

To ensure sustained growth, the brand works with physicians to understand the health issues that plague people and develop Ayurvedic solutions to address them. Rasayananam’s next product line will focus on solving digestive issues.

“We are in no rush to launch products one after the other because our goal is quality. And that takes time, ”he concludes.

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