Expansion

Sustainable Is The New Black

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Beco started as a beach clean-up initiative that Aditya Ruia, Akshay Varma and Anuj Ruia participated in regularly. During one of the clean-ups, they found the plastic wrapper of a chocolate lying around, and gleaned that the chocolate had in fact been discontinued in the 1990s. The homecare segment in India had not witnessed any innovation in approximately two decades with most of the daily essentials put in use having a negative impact on the environment. Beco was started to create sustainable homecare products that do not harm the home and nature.

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“The driving belief at Beco is fairly simple: we want to make sustainability convenient and affordable for all consumers. Beco aims to make sustainability convenient for every consumer in terms of quality, accessibility and affordability,” said Ruia, co-founder, Beco.

The company is using an omnichannel strategy, wherein the products are available not only on its D2C website but also present across major e-commerce marketplaces such as Amazon, Flipkart, Cred, and quick commerce platforms such as Blinkit, Instamart, Zepto, and Dunzo. In the offline space, the company’s products are available across 5,000 stores pan-India. Beco plans to expand its presence to 10,000 stores all over India in the upcoming year.

According to Ruia, the company invested a lot on conducting extensive research spread out over 6-12 months to determine compostability and recyclability of a product. The company also checks the solution ingredients closely to make sure that its cleaners have chemical-free ingredients and are not harmful. Running tests for organic packaging at present, Beco has dedicated a proportion of the infusion from the recently concluded fundraise towards its research and development efforts.

Despite many brands coming up in the natural tissue and cleaner space, Ruia believes the competitive or differentiating element is purely derived from distribution and pricing.

“The consumers’ purchasing habits or behaviour patterns, and the dearth of knowledge with respect to sustainable products have been the key challenges we have faced so far. As a result, a major chunk of our focus has been towards educating the consumers about the perils of plastic and chemical products on the planet, and one’s own health, and how Beco is trying to solve these problems,” commented Ruia when asked about the challenges faced by Beco.

The company aims to invest in developing newer products within existing product lines and categories. Beco had raised INR 4 crore in the seed round in 2021 and recently raised $3 million in Series A. The company aims for $10 million in Series B in the next funding round.

“Start with a strong belief to drive change, identify a gap in the market and do your research to cater to consumer demands or create demand,” advices Ruia to budding entrepreneurs.

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