Ankita Wamburkar, mother to an eight-year-old, wanted to build something on her own. A NIFT Hyderabad graduate, Ankita had varied work experience in the retail industry in products ranging from office stationery to garments, and was working as a concept manager for the company, Pretty Women Fashion.
But, it was fashion jewellery that really intrigued her. “I believed in the words of Coco Chanel, the French fashion icon – costume jewellery is made to make women beautiful,” says Ankita. It was this passion that led her to start Just Peachy in October 2018 in Hyderabad.
“While the idea was in place, the biggest challenge was the ‘problem of plenty’. The ecommerce segment has brought in huge competition. To match with the pace, I travelled across the sub-continent to understand the market trends. Right from street markets to big stores, I visited all these places to gauge what women looked for in their jewellery,” says Ankita.
The brand presently employs local artisans from cities like Mumbai, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Delhi and Kolkata to manufacture jewellery. Apart from generating employment for packaging, they also offer internships to NIFT students.
Building the brand
Just Peachy has a small and professional core team from within the family. Neelesh Bam, an IIT and IIM alumni, and Shubhi Gupta, a Company Secretary, are part of the team.
“We started with Rs 2 lakh of our personal savings to buy a few pieces of jewellery, and have rotated all the earnings back into the business to scale up to more than 50,000 pieces in the inventory now,” adds Ankita.
The label began by selling 300 pieces per month, and in just a short time, reached 6000 pieces per month, which was highly encouraging. The brand also achieved higher sell-throughs and lower customer returns indicating its acceptance by the market. The team at Myntra succored the brand in achieving Rs 2 crore worth of business in the very first year of launch.
“In March 2019, we launched ‘sepia’, a one of a kind offering of handmade silver and pearl jewellery, and we were the only brand to sell pearl fine jewellery in an online platform,” adds Ankita.
The brand now has over 1200 products in range, with about 100 new designs being added every month. Once sold out, they don’t bring the same designs again.
The revenue and market
The cost of building a business like this is at least Rs 10-15 lakh. Even with a sizeable catalogue of 200-300 styles, it takes at least three to four years to reach Rs 2 crore worth of sales. However, Ankita’s expertise in curation, where she picked fast moving styles with the right pricing, made it possible to achieve success in such a short span of time.
According to a study by Allied Market Research, the global costume jewellery market size is expected to reach $40.6 billion by 2022. The costume jewellery market has significantly benefited from economic growth in the Asia-Pacific and LAMEA regions.
Some of the core players in the space include – Pipa+Bella, Voylla, Azilaa, and YouShine to name a few.
Just Peachy has a high fashion range of good quality articles ranging from earrings, necklaces, rings, hair accessories, and bracelets. Ankita explains the collection has a global appeal which is high on trend, creativity, craftsmanship and uniqueness, but maintains affordable prices within reach for all.
“Just Peachy is aiming to achieve Rs 25 crore by 2025, and also set up its own jewellery manufacturing unit. We will soon launch other accessories to widen the offerings,” says Ankita.