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Mamaearth and Nykaa v MNC giants; Meet PayPal’s Deepa Vijayaraghavan


Will things at OpenAI settle down this week?

Microsoft has hired Sam Altman to head its artificial intelligence team after OpenAI fired him as the CEO on Friday. Greg Brockman, another co-founder of OpenAI, is also joining the tech giant. 

Meanwhile, the AI startup’s staff has threatened to quit the company and join Altman at Microsoft’s new division unless the board resigns, reported Reuters. The ChatGPT maker will get its third CEO in as many days as Emmett Shear, the former CEO of Amazon’s streaming service Twitch, joins as the company’s interim CEO. He replaces Mira Murati. 

Closer home, The RBI’s decision to tighten norms for unsecured personal loans is credit-positive because lenders will need to allocate higher capital for such loans, improving their loss-absorbing buffers, Moody’s Investors Service said on Monday.

ICYMI: Fintech startups weigh in on the impact of RBI’s decision. 

Elsewhere, the richest 1% of humanity is responsible for more carbon emissions than the poorest 66%, according to a report. 

Did you know? It would take 1,500 years for someone in the bottom 99% to produce as much carbon as the richest billionaires do in a year.

Talk about one massive carbon footprint. 

In today’s newsletter, we will talk about 

  • Making inroads to MNC stronghold
  • Meet PayPal’s Deepa Vijayaraghavan
  • Shopping ideas, feat. creators

Here’s your trivia for today: Which country does the Black Forest cake come from?


Making inroads to MNC stronghold

Nykaa Mamaearth

Mamaearth and Nykaa have something in common, besides having women founders. Both these Indian brands have managed to make inroads into the stronghold of large multinational companies. The achievements of the D2C giants aren’t skin deep—they are shaking up the beauty and personal care space while consistently displaying scale and profits.

What unites the two ventures is the sheer commitment and resilience of its co-founders along with capturing new internet users and beauty beginners.

Goliaths for the win:

  • While Indian beauty brands have existed for several decades, Mamaearth and Nykaa have helped attract meaningful attention to locally made products. 
  • At the same time, these companies have also carved out shelf space for themselves at stores across the country, ones that were typically reserved for MNCs.
  • They have made deep inroads into offline retail, dragging them into the larger beauty market, which is expected to break through the $15 billion mark in the next couple of years.

<Funding Alert>

Startup: Purple Style Labs

Amount: $8M

Round: Series D

Startup: Hanto Workspaces

Amount: Rs 15 Cr

Round: Equity and Debt

Women in Tech

Meet PayPal’s Deepa Vijayaraghavan

women techies

Deepa Vijayaraghavan, Director – Program Management at PayPal, says her father wished she would secure a government job that would bring stability and so enrolled her in an insurance course. However, she wanted to follow her curiosity in technology and build a career in this field.

In HerStory’s Women in Tech series this week, Vijayaraghavan takes us through her journey and tells us why mentorship is important for women to grow, excel, and succeed.

Take charge:

  • Fifteen years ago, Vijayaraghavan joined PayPal in Chennai, a professional move that has seen her rise from strength to strength—from a program manager to a director—with a career arc filled with growth, learning, and transformation.
  • As a woman leader in tech, she has experienced and observed many challenges that make it difficult for women to sustain themselves in this field—primarily due to the intersection of professional and personal lives.
  • Vijayaraghavan advises young women to dream big and never constrain their aspirations with self-doubt or external limitations.


Shopping ideas, feat. creators

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” align=”center”>e-commerce

Indian consumers are increasingly relying on social media to make purchase decisions, a recent study commissioned by Meta—the parent company of Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp—along with GWI, found. 

“Both beauty and fashion verticals are growing strongly on Meta platforms, and an increasing number of advertisers from these verticals are turning to Instagram Reels for engagement and business growth,” said Megha Apparao, Director of Ecommerce and Retail, Meta.


  • According to the study, two out of three viewers of fashion content, and seven out of ten viewers of beauty content follow Indian influencers.
  • In its beauty report, the study found a notable shift in preferences among consumers, particularly post-COVID-19. About 68% of the consumers surveyed, now favoured making beauty purchases online.
  • As for its fashion study, 76% of consumers discover fashion brands on social media, with a significant 97% discovering through Meta platforms, of which 52% credit it to Instagram Reels.

News & updates

  • New plans: Australian stock exchange operator ASX has hired Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) to overhaul its clearing and settlement software, opting for a route that will take less customisation after ditching a much-criticised blockchain-based effort.
  • Acquisition: Cryptocurrency exchange Bullish, run by former New York Stock Exchange President Tom Farley, has bought CoinDesk from crypto-focused investor Digital Currency Group in an all-cash deal.
  • Environment: Waste from at least 19 international brands, including Adidas and Walmart, is being used to fuel kilns in brick factories in Cambodia, and some workers are falling ill.

Which country does the Black Forest cake come from?

Answer: Germany. 

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