We talked to Divij Bajaj of Power Gummies about nutraceuticals, and he had the following to say:-
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Divij Bajaj: We are doing great and taking all the necessary precautions. After a dead tiring work from home day earlier or working from office taking all the precautions. We try to spend at least one hour together talking about our plans post-pandemic and where we can travel next. I would say we have started spending more quality time together with house party weekends singing jam and hosting our karaoke nights. Such times with family are always memorable.
Tell us about you, your career, how you founded Power Gummies.
Divij Bajaj: To me, the definition of an entrepreneur is not just about a person who sets up a business taking on the financial risk in the hope of reaping profits, but my goal has always been to feel the thrill of exploration. When I look at what I have made as a career, I would say I am a person with an entrepreneurial outlook towards life, trying to explore things. The industry dimensions change drastically in today’s time, and I wanted to experience all and stand true to my virtue against them serving the society. The key to becoming a successful entrepreneur starts from observing, adapting, and responding to people’s needs around you, and the profits shall follow.
This process of starting something from scratch to building it as an entity with a large self-driven team has been an expedition itself, and I am looking forward to the journey ahead. Whenever a person wants to find self-purpose that keeps them going, they should only try to look within and know what allows them to live one day at a time, even in the times when something went wrong. Articulate your goals well, which go in sync with your ideology as well and how you always imagine your life to be. I feel this struggle seems meaningless once you derive great happiness from the process of working towards achieving your goals.
Rowing my way out to find where I belong, I have had short stances at many shores. I founded an Edtech platform called The Admission Portal to ease the admission related problems that later got merged to become justdakhila.com. Later I also adventured to start a silent disco chain, “Headphones,” which became a sensation in Delhi being a distinct concept. Yet, looking further to what will be my next, I thought to try my always practiced technique of doing smart work by trying to find a solution to problems in my surroundings. Since, when we try to think of a good idea, we might not be able to think of a good idea. We just have to find the solution for a problem in our own life, which could be lying there just as a fresh new and untouched idea. Well, that’s how vividly I devised the idea of starting Power Gummies and did the same by 2018.
This entourage has a back story of literally picking up this to develop a pill alternative company for effective nutrition and visioning that advocating taste and healthy living can go together in pursuit of health with happiness. This idea came when I understood from seeing my mother that people find difficulty in taking her supplements, thinking of it as a medicine. It just clicked me.
This initially started with me just being the sole representative for Power Gummies, from procurement to distributing samples for the pilot trials and researching gummy compositions with third-party labs, agencies, and experts. When I felt like a business founder, bringing Power Gummies to reality has daunting times to reality has not just required sowing but nurturing with honest efforts. Truly, my vision is bringing Power Gummies in place to create differentiated products suiting all – fulfilling complete requirements and industry innovations. It was tough, peculiarly when everyone believed it to be another ‘kiddish’ idea. Yet, fortunately, I have had the right set of people who have been walking along with me to establish my nutraceutical startup as a market leader.
How does Power Gummies innovate?
Divij Bajaj: We have a team of health & nutrition researchers who put their exemplary efforts towards developing and improving our gummy compositions solving different health concerns of people. We plan to launch over 40 variants, which are under the pipeline in several stages, such as composition fixation, clinical trials, and development stages. We plan to launch them over the coming years by creating the right customer base set, establishing awareness and education.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Divij Bajaj: Things have changed in the healthcare sector on a revolutionary basis during this Pandemic, changing the potential with the changed consumer behavior of adapting to add healthcare products in their daily lifestyle. Covid19 has seen sales growing in folds during the last months, creating value even after the lockdown has opened up worldwide. The digital consumer brands across verticals are projected to grow at an exponential rate during the coming months as well.
The Pandemic has reminded the importance of health to every person, with CAGR doubling like never before on a global level. Bringing attention of people to what they are putting inside their body is not a tedious task like before, since people are organically looking for nutritional alternatives to build their immune systems. Even our brand has seen massive sales growth with a 6X increase in our valuation over just 6 months. This majorly is a result of how people are resorting to vitamin supplements, be it in any form – pills, powders, or gummy.
From where I see it, the nutraceutical space has been consistently rising sustainably in domestic markets with increasing demand from tier 2 or tier 3 cities. The grip of fear to be safe from the after-effects or getting infected from Corona or any medical condition is making people aware and conscious about their health and fitness apart from regular food intake, which lacks nutritional value at times. In such disturbing times, I would say people are moving ahead positively and doing the right things by knowing all they have to do is take the right supplementation. There is a need for nutritional alternatives for people apart from regular pills. It’s easier to raise funds from various ventures in present times with any healthcare brand which has a promising alternative to offer, where Power Gummies have raised third funding in series within 2020.
I believe amidst this Pandemic; people want to find easier and less complicated things that bring them happiness—alternatives that can be stocked as well. The gummy alternative has proved to precede all other alternatives with all people’s terms – taste, interest, durability, water retention, weather adaptability, composition, and effectiveness. The business is driving digitally as well during the Pandemic as people have started resorting to every possible alternative as prevention regime and immunity building as well globally. Our brand Power Gummies has also observed a stark growth in sales overall digital e-commerce marketplaces. The Beach Body, our newly launched weight management gummies, are also receiving a huge response, which makes us believe the Pandemic has only influenced our business and not affected it.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Divij Bajaj: As an individual, I always encourage people to never give up and learn as much as they can. Eyeing on your goals whenever facing any setback or difficulty eases the struggle. There are many difficult choices one has to make through the journey. In my case, a lot many people made fun of my idea considering these gummies to be another ‘kiddish’ idea or just candies. Everyone around me poked me, saying it will run through just a season and I will be back to square one. Yet, with my learnings and experiences from an early age.
Being a creative-minded person with a keen interest in dramatics and debate from the college days, managing my academic performance was a tedious task. My resort was using the smart study technique to cover whatever I have missed upon, as I mentioned. Never stopping myself from trying my hand on anything, even If I fail, has helped me. Also, the environment I was brought up in where my father always told me, ‘Those who wait or rely on destiny only get what has been left by those who struggle and achieve.’ I would say I realized victory comes with smart work and not just with hard work at a young age.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety? How do you project yourself and Power Gummies in the future?
Divij Bajaj: I believe in treating myself with a break in about every 3-4 weeks to rewind and recharge. I love to travel and have been to around 38 countries so far. Everyone has different ways to deal with stress and anxiety. I deal with work stress during regular days by taking one day at a time. I keep clarity between my goals for the day, short term, and long term as well.
Also, I love to party hard as well with my set of people and love to meet new people after being productive at what I do. However, when I vision how I would like to take forward my company. I only believe in sustainable growth, which lets my company grow along with the people who are leaving no stones unturned to build along with me. We work together as an army, and I believe in providing a driven but stress-free work environment. Exploration shouldn’t carry the burden of success, yet success is always a byproduct of exploration.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Divij Bajaj: Everyone serving in this arena is our competitor, even the ones who are not offering a gummy format. Surely, all brands are performing their best. However, to name a few in the domestic markets – Sugar Bear, Kapiva, Goli, Top Gummy, and Man Matters. We plan to stay in the game, hitting strategies with customer trust, utmost commitment, and right awareness. To elaborate, we aim to stay fair to our customers without making false promises for observing instant overnight results.
The Indian customer expectation psychic is programmed in such a way wherein people are impatient to seek results or rewards, which has become a behavioral habit. However, we have been upfront with our 90 days promise and understand that our product’s effectiveness requires a direction for regular intake for 90 days to show proven results as per the clinical trials. The period for vitamins to start showing effectiveness and changes depends on the metabolic level of every individual.
Second, when it comes to providing the best quality crafted gummies. We have Pharma grade manufacturing facilities that are not state-of-the-art in India as compared to other countries, which makes it high on cost for us to get them manufactured. Yet, we do not compromise on what we offer as quality commitment. No other brand in the Indian arena provides that level of quality. We manufacture with utmost precision that does not require individual pillow packing like all our other rivals. Has temperature tolerance up to 40* C. Our highest quality ingredients give us a better shelf life of 18 months. We are ahead in the game already with aspects of taste and composition of gummies consisting of multivitamins.
Your final thoughts?
Divij Bajaj: The world may pick on you, but the only key to get through is never stop.