D2C brands in India are growing at 40% CAGR: Utsav Malhotra, COO, Noise

The year 2023 has started on a rollercoaster note, with an accelerated adoption of generative AI, AI chatbots, and digital innovations. This is bringing in new operational efficiencies, stronger strategies, a far greater emphasis on building deep bonds with various stakeholders and consumers. In keeping with the current market ecosystem, technology and a human approach are seen as going hand in hand.

As part of our annual TRENDING NOW series, Adgully has been approaching key industry leaders to Crystal Gaze into 2023 to highlight the major trends and developments that they see dominating the industry in the year ahead.

In conversation with Adgully, Utsav Malhotra, Chief Operating Officer, Noise, speaks at length about key trends dominating the D2C industry, how D2C brands in India are growing at a CAGR of 40%, and much more.

Key trends dominating the D2C industry in 2023

The space has witnessed tremendous growth in the last few years and there is a big pool of opportunities soaring for D2C brands this year as well. It is estimated that D2C brands in India are growing at a CAGR of 40% and we are extremely proud to say that Noise, being one of India’s largest bootstrapped D2C brands, has been playing a significant role in this growth.

There are a plethora of trends dominating this space currently. To begin with, D2C brands have shown excellence in leveraging technology to the fullest.

  • We have also witnessed the expansion and increase of purpose-driven brands entering the D2C space in categories that we didn’t foresee could exist
  • D2C brands are making their shift towards an omnichannel approach wherein they’re looking at expanding their footprint beyond digital medium to offline channels, in order to make their offerings available to consumers across the nation
  • Another interesting key trend in the D2C space that we have witnessed in the last 6-8 months is hyper-personalization. The trend of hyper-personalization is a step forward for D2C brands to build a stronger connection with their end users and create higher brand recall and loyalty

We are on the cusp of a thrilling new wave of D2C, with new trends such as digital-first or omnichannel emerging on the regular and there is a long way for this industry to go. We can see D2C becoming a mindset nowadays. For D2C brands across sectors, it is very critical to stay connected with the end users, understanding their requirements and providing solutions is key.

Major expectations from 2023

The D2C space has witnessed tremendous growth in the last few years and there is a big pool of opportunities running high for D2C brands in 2023. It is estimated that D2C brands in India are growing at a CAGR of 40%.

In the coming years, the D2C model is transforming further into more of a ‘direct-to-me’ model, where hyper-personalisation plays a massive role. Constantly connecting with the consumer is a pivotal task for D2C brands to increase brand awareness and recall in a space where players are constantly battling to create distinct differentiation for their offerings.

At Noise, we have driven campaigns following this approach such as our AI-driven campaign in partnership with Rishabh Pant was focused on sending out personalised messages to the potential buyers of our flagship smartwatch, the ColorFit Pro 4 series, offering an increased recall and conversion.

Furthermore, as this space is directly reaching out to consumers, they need to understand their ever-evolving requirements. With practices ranging from sustainability, ethics, transparent business practices, gender diversity and inclusion, D2C brands are expected to walk the talk and be as open with their consumers as they can. Consumers today see value in brands building sound businesses which put people first.

Key focus areas for Noise in 2023

We have been growing more than 100% YoY over the last 3-4 years and we hope to continue this growth trajectory as we move ahead. We closed the year FY22 at a whopping Rs 850 crore. Having been one of the first Indian brands to localise production of smart wearables in India, we strongly believe in Make in India and we are continuing to bolster our manufacturing efforts in India. Over 90% of our smartwatches are being manufactured in India starting this year, and we are proud to be the first brand to ship a whopping 3M+ made-in-India smartwatches so far. This is a testament to us being a true Made in India, Made for India brand that started with the dream to revolutionise the Indian wearable market, and we pride ourselves in being the first-mover towards localising smart wearable production in the country.

Our endeavour is to also continue to expand our consumer touchpoints and expand our reach across offline channels.


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