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skill development 01 Aug 2015

We are aiming to produce 2,000 skilled professionals annually: Acolade Cosmetics MD

Seeing dire crunch of skilled professionals in wellness space, Founder of Acolade Care Cosmetics, Vandana Bharadwaj has entered into training business by opening her first Academy in Mumbai recently to generate skilled manpower.

Leading herbal beauty products manufacturer, Acolade Care Cosmetics, has launch its first ‘Acolade Academy’ in Mumbai recently. Located in the heart of Western Suburbs of Andheri, the academy offers a range of courses, from crash to advance, specialized courses in hairdressing, make-up, skin care, tricology and cosmetology, conducted by experienced faculties and guest faculties may includes eminent doctors, hair stylists and skin experts. The academy aims to impart internationally acclaimed techniques and exposure to latest trends in beauty and personal grooming.

Founded by young woman entrepreneur Vandana Bharadwaj, Acolade Care Cosmetics offers elaborate range of beauty products which are 100 per cent organic, used by renowned salons. Before foraying into the skill development area by opening their first academy, the company has made a remarkable entry into the salon business by launching ‘Acolade Vanity S’lon’ nationally.

Wellness India spoke to Bharadwaj to understand her business model, target segment and much more.

Being herbal beauty products supplier, what inspired you to venture into academy?
Though, there is regular demand for salon and spas workers, however, the market also lacks on technical upgradation among skilled professionals. A large pool of staff in salons across the country still does not have knowledgeable professionals. There is a kind of casual attitude among salon workers while most of them are lacking with work ethics and values. Observing this, I decided to venture into skilling people with internationally acclaimed techniques and exposure to latest trends in beauty and personal grooming.
  The professionalism of my mother inspired me to offer professional education to the students through my academy. I started with my own salon in 2009 and then in 2011, I started manufacturing herbal beauty products under the brand name ‘Acolade care cosmetics’ before launching Accolade Academy for beauty and grooming in July 2015.

How Government’s Skill India Mission has influenced you?
Government should have started Skill India Mission earlier, citing that India is a young country and the beauty and wellness industry need more and more skilled people to fulfill the burgeoning demand. Factors like availability of inadequate number of training institutes and the lack of awareness of skilling courses for better employment opportunity among people results in dearth of skilled manpower in the industry.

With the launch of the academy, what are your plans of skilling people?
There is a huge dearth of skilled and trained personnel in the industry. We aim to bridge this gap by providing globally acclaimed structure, assured placement and empower woman into the fascinating world of beauty and wellness. In Acolade, we are aiming to create 2,000 professionals annually through our short and long term courses. For the same, we are hiring dermatologists and beauticians. These students will be with accorded CIDESCO certificates. The academy will be one-of-its-kind to provide vocational education in different categories of beauty and grooming.
   Acolade academy will ensure 100 per cent Job guarantee for all students at various salons, spas, clinics and wellness centres. The company has tie-up with major beauty and wellness brands which will be channelized by Acolade HR team, specifically, hired to oversee the procedure. The academy will conduct three batches in a day with average headcount of 45 students. Courses will start from Rs 5,000 to Rs 3 lakh, depending upon the course chosen by the students.

What are your expansion plans?
I am planning to open around 8 to 9 Acolade academies in metros and small cities across the country. As well as we are planning to open 20 more salons in the same territories through franchisees by the end of 2017 or beginning 2018. Presently, we have 5 salons successfully functioning in the country.

How much fund you are planning to invest in the expansion or scaling of all your currently functioning projects?
For each of the academy, there will be an investment of Rs50 to Rs60 Lakh. And for each salon, the investment will be of Rs25 to Rs30 Lakh for the regular one and for the premium salons the investment will be of Rs45 to Rs50 Lakh which will be incurred by Franchisees. These academies and salons would be operating through FOCO (Franchise Owned, Company Operated) model.
   For academies, Maharashtra is my focus for expansion because in the interiors of this state, the infrastructure of villages is worst than African countries even.

According to you, how big is the beauty industry in India?
It’s a huge industry with immense potential. Around 60-70 per cent young population of the country and the growing focus on personal care generating huge demand in the market.

By what percentage, Acolade Care Cosmetics is growing Y-O-Y basis?
We are growing by 20 to 25 per cent annually.

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