Success Story of Vineeta Singh: Founder of Sugar Cosmetics

Vineeta Singh-Founder of Sugar Cosmetics

Success Story of Vineeta Singh: Founder of Sugar Cosmetics

How did Vineeta Singh establish Sugar Cosmetics by rejecting a job offer worth INR 1 crore per annum?

Sugar cosmetics, though a fairly new company and has grown as one of the most reputed and widely used cosmetics brands.

It is a popular 100% vegan, cruelty-free makeup brand due to its use of natural ingredients, high-quality, and out-of-the-box, low-poly packaging. Cosmetics from Sugar are the best picks for Indians.

This cosmetic giant is a venture of an independent, strong woman – Vineeta Singh. She is an inspiration to many women out there with an awe-inspiring and jaw-dropping success story.

If you are an avid fan of Shark Tank and watch it daily, you might already know Vineeta Singh, as she is one of the leading investors.

Here, we will share the inspirational story of Vineeta Singh and how she becomes one of the most-admired women entrepreneurs.

Early Life of Vineeta Singh

Born in Delhi, India, in 1984, Vineeta Singh completed her schooling in Delhi. Her mother was a Ph.D., and her father was a professor at IIT Madras. She pursued a bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from ​​the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, in 2005.

Immediately, she pursued her MBA (Master of Business Administration) from IIM Ahmedabad and completed 2007.

By the end of pursuing her MBA, she had a strong determination to set up her own startup. As a result, she rejected a job offer worth 1 crore LPA.

While doing the MBA course in Ahmedabad, she met Kaushik Mukherjee, with whom she married in 2011.

Kaushik Mukherjee is the president and chief operating officer of Sugar Cosmetics. Well, he is a business and life partner of Vineeta Singh. The couple is popularly known as the “Ironman couple”.

Entrepreneurial Journey of Vineeta Singh

Though she got multiple job offers after her MBA, she refused all of them. Even her parents were astonished about her decision. However, she was very determined and had a fact in her mind:

“You can be an entrepreneur only by actually being one”.

With this in mind, she moved to Mumbai, full of dreams in her mind and a passion for turning them into reality.

As a student, she worked at Deutsche Bank in 2005. With a strong experience in the banking and financial industry, she got an offer from Quetzal Verify Private Limited, a multinational investment company.

However, she was offered the position of director with a tenure of 5 years and an annual salary of 1 crore. Surprisingly, she rejected the offer.

Establishment of Sugar Cosmetics

Vineeta Singh is also the founder of two other startups, which eventually failed. With two failed startups and a regret of rejecting the lucrative job offer, she found her way out of demotivation and established Sugar Cosmetics.

As she struggled with her professional life, she founded a beauty subscription firm, Fab Bag, offering different types of beauty products.

There she realized the importance of makeup, beauty, and cosmetics in the life of Indian women. She analyzed foreign and local brands and found that many cosmetic companies in India did not cater to the needs of Indian women’s skin tones.

With the insights from her analysis, she and her husband, Kaushik Mukherjee, founded Sugar Cosmetics in 2015.

It was not a plain road for Vineeta Singh initially. Many people said that it is not easy to compete with other cosmetics behemoths, like Lakmé, L’Oréal, and MAC Cosmetics, and it would require a million dollars of investment. Also, many said their products were only basics and won’t be strong moats.

With so much criticism and failure, finally, in 2017, India Quotient, an early backer, and Singapore-based RB Investments raised a helping hand.

They were the first investors for Vineeta Singh and Kaushik Mukherjee. This investor helped her dream turn into reality.

In the first year, the company yielded INR 52 lakhs, which was unexpected for the duo, though not enough.

Only three products rolled out in the first year. Unfortunately, the duo was not able to import one of their products from Germany due to inadequate working capital.

They took a loan and paid manufacturers to import that product from Germany. The product was Lip Crayon.

This product turned out to be the best-selling product in the second year. The revenue multiplied 6 times by the first year – INR 3 crore. By the end of 2017, the sales jumped to INR 11 crore. And in fiscal 2020, the sales turned out to INR 105 crore.

In FY22, the company generated an operating revenue of INR 210.9 crore, which was INR 148.9 in FY21.

Image source

In an interview, Vineeta Singh said:

“My savings were diminishing; I’d hardly ever go out because I was on a strict budget. But I pushed on. I even started a venture, but it didn’t work as planned.

After a year, I felt brave enough to give entrepreneurship another shot with Fab Bag, a beauty subscription company.

But after research, I realized the need for quality cosmetics for Indian women–that’s how Sugar Cosmetics was born.”


Today, Sugar Cosmetics is one of the most remarkable brands known for its vegan and free-from-cruelty makeup products.

From skin, face, and eyes to nails, the firm produces top-notch products and sells across the globe. More than 75% of the employees at the company are women. 

The fastest-growing firm has several offline stores and, obviously, a strong online presence –

The company’s revenue originates from three different sources – 45% from offline stores, 45% from an online store, and 10% from the international market.

Today, the number of retail outlets that sell Sugar products is 40,000 to 45,000, and it is expected to grow to 1,00,000 outlets by the end of 2024, told the founder, Vineeta Singh, to BusinessLine.

Awards and Achievements

  • Between 1993 and 2001, Vineeta won academic gold medals. She is a superb athlete as well.
  • The IIT Madras Badminton Tournament saw her win two gold medals and two silver medals.
  • At IIM Ahmedabad, she was given the Dulari Mattu Award in 2007 for being the best female all-rounder.
  • She was awarded back-to-back medals from the Comrades Marathon Association in 2012 and 2013 for finishing South Africa’s highest Ultra-Marathons, Ups and Downs (89 km), and Comrades Back-to-Back (89 km).
  • She was recognized by the Economic Times in 2020 as one of India’s 40 Under Forty business leaders.
  • She will be among the most influential women in India in 2021, according to Forbes India.
  • She was mentioned as an advisor on one of the questions in Kon Banega Crore Pati (KBC), Amitabh Bachchan’s most popular TV program.
  • Now, she is a leading investor in the show Shark Tank.

Well, Vineeta Singh’s story was extremely inspiring and motivating for women who have a dream of becoming an entrepreneur.

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