Forbes India 15th Anniversary Special

Salon man of India

Published: May 16, 2019 05:15:43 AM IST
Updated: May 16, 2019 06:44:07 PM IST

Salon man of India

Kapil Kumar
Pioneer And Mentor: Indian Salon Industry
Years of experience: 35 years

Kapil Kumar is a first-generation entrepreneur who envisioned an industry in a nation where the professional grooming and beauty industry was virtually non-existent, considered trivial, and certainly not worthy of mentioning it in society. His name is etched in the history of the hair and beauty industry and will be inked with gratitude and compliments of every industry professional who either got mentored or inspired by him or were encouraged by him in many ways. Born and brought up in a typical Delhi middle-class family, Mr Kapil had a tough baptism into life. Having lost his father at an early age, he dropped out of chemical engineering to take care of his mother and sister and carried the mantle of his father’s business of manufacturing paint brushes.

His penchant for learning pushed him to embark on the path of self education, something unheard in the 80s. Undeterred, Mr Kapil pursued graduation (distance learning) and MBA and specialised in his favourite subject of how to launch and create brands. Right from introducing a hair brush to a comb-dominated market to sowing seeds of each and every innovation, style, trend in various segments of professional hair and beauty industry, Kapil became the founder of the professional hair and beauty industry in India. Mr Kapil managed to change perspective about a routine profession. His key focus has always been—Innovate, Educate and Lead.

Charting The Path
In the early 90s in India, going to a barber shop was just a morning ritual and for ladies it was an evening errand not to be shared. It was Mr Kapil’s disruptive thinking and global vision that barbers were trained and groomed to become hair stylists. He gave India the brand umbrella called ‘Salon’. It was he who took out grooming from the closet and created the first Unisex Salon with showroom styled ambience. He not only revolutionized grooming, he also opened doors of respect, honour and pride for persons working at these establishments.

Today, being a hair stylist is a profession and going to a salon a metrosexual signature. Kapil’s vision of a highly evolved professional hair and beauty industry started taking shape when the industry started looking up to him to launch products and tools and integrate education to ensure correct usage. Mr Kapil left no stone unturned to ensure all professional appliances become part of every salon, barber shop and beauty parlor. Mr Kapil trained himself as a professional hair stylist, master colorist, cosmetologist and a nail art specialist in various countries like UK & USA. It was his enterprising strides that brought global brands to India under his tutelage and care. Today, he is ready to take the organic culture to a whole new premium level with unparalleled product ranges propelled by a mission to make beauty and wellness a life transforming potion for everyone.

Life Lessons
• Think Big enough to feel you can become a game changer. Mr Kapil’s entrepreneurial life is based on this rule as it clearly emanates the self-made spirit with distinction.
• There is an enterprising professional in everyone. Respecting the other person next is one of his unshakable principles.
• Always be transparent and truthful, come what may. Many industry insiders echo that this is one of his strongest qualities.
• Keep learning with total humility. He defines this maxim in his own words, “Forever being a student is the best way to be ahead in whatever you do. Simply because your work discipline is forever evolving by your honest endeavors. Respect that truly and strive relentlessly to ensure this cycle is always in motion”.
• Societal good must be an essential prerequisite of every business initiative.
• Wealth cannot be created unless it is shared. He believes that the best way to grow on a firm footing is to ensure that value creation trancends all levels of stakeholders.
• Paint your own story on a blank canvas.
• Never say die. He has never allowed failures or any negativity to affect his journey of innovation and leadership.
• Leaders create more leaders. Mr Kapil is a leader who empowers his team to ensure that more leaders come out of the ranks.

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