3 mins


As change remains the only constant factor in the growth dynamics of India’s beauty industry, Rayed Merchant, Director, SSIZ International, discusses his threepronged approach plan to broaden the business horizon with Priyanka Parshurami.

Riding high on the growth wave, the beauty industry in India is led by talented professionals and industrious entrepreneurs. Amongst the latter, a prominent name is Rayed Merchant, Director, SSIZ International. In an exclusive interaction, he talks to us about nurturing fresh talent, improving salon and vendor relationships and the growth trajectory of his company, for both Indian and international markets.

Here’s the excerpt from the interview:


“It seems like yesterday when we were a one-stop retail outlet for all salon needs. Back then, we noticed gaps in the market that needed to be addressed. Our entire team had a drive and desire to fulfil certain unmet needs of the consumer. To eventually transform into a homegrown brand that not only addressed those needs, but also developed a long-lasting relation of trust and care with consumers, is a special

feeling. None of this would have been possible without years of experience, expertise and insight, as well as the unwavering support of our customers who gave us a fair chance, and have never let go since then!”

The Challenges 

“One thing that should never be forgotten is that it is all about the art and the craft! Consumers today want to associate with a brand that has an original, honest and creative touch. Numbers and statistics may be a pivotal and indispensable part of this business, but in the end, it is honesty and creativity that will seize the day.

A very easy and efficient solution is to stay connected with consumers, peers and the industry.

Another crucial aspect when it comes to the Indian salon sector is the value of young talent. The next generation of talent will come with fresh ideas, which will help industry take the big leap. So, one must never forget the importance of nurturing and supporting fresh talent.

The participation and development of young talent is embedded in SSIZ’s very core. In-house programmes and shoots often give a platform to a bustling array of budding talents, who get a ‘hands on’ chance to work in a professional environment, and apply their craft in a tangible way while collaborating with us.”

The Relationships

“The relationship between salons and brands has come a long way. In today’s day and age, the entire process is mature, seamless and transparent. Both parties have realised that the salon industry is bursting with massive growth, with a potential for much more. This has cemented a firm and strong rapport. We have also realised that rather than squeezing one another, a symbiotic relationship is much more rewarding.”

The Plans

“We have adopted a three-pronged approach for business growth:

“Exciting would be an UNDERSTATEMENT WHEN IT COMES TO TALK ING ABOUT THE JOURNEY till now. SSIZ’S HISTORY HAS ALL THE INGREDIENTS that make for a very interesting story!”

• Firstly, we will imbibe the best and finest of international industry standards in all the key areas of our business.

• The second pillar of our plan will be to expand our long-standing commitment to technology. Tech will be at the forefront of all our processes, especially the consumer facing ones.

• Last but not the least, we will continue to grow and nurture our in-house talent, so that they can take on senior positions and roles, and eventually groom the next set of fresh talent.

These three pillars will form the core of the SSIZ story moving forward.”

Looking Ahead

• Innovations in men’s grooming.

• Launch of new product designs from the house of SSIZ.

• Ikonic will delve into an exclusive consumer range, and explore international markets right from the Middle East to Europe.

• Tailor-made skincare products by Biosoft.

“Time is a luxurious resource in our industry, and while everyone is occupied, there’s a need for a positive shift. Building connections on a deeper human level is a challenge, given our busy schedules. Even when we do come together, it’s often for work-related purposes, leaving little room for casual conversations. Incorporating more leisure led conversations into our interactions is essential to preventing the industry from becoming monotonous. In an industry that relies on creativity, dynamism and innovation, it’s imperative for us to balance hard work with enjoyable moments.” PBHJ

This article appears in the Dec 23 - Jan 23 Issue of Professional Beauty/ Hairdressers Journal India

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This article appears in the Dec 23 - Jan 23 Issue of Professional Beauty/ Hairdressers Journal India