Behind Her Empire

Behind Her Empire: How Tatcha Founder Vicky Tsai Quit Her Job and Built an Empire

Yasmin Nouri

Yasmin is the host of the "Behind Her Empire" podcast, focused on highlighting self-made women leaders and entrepreneurs and how they tackle their career, money, family and life.

Each episode covers their unique hero's journey and what it really takes to build an empire with key lessons learned along the way. The goal of the series is to empower you to see what's possible & inspire you to create financial freedom in your own life.

Vicky Tsai, founder of Japanese beauty brand Tatcha, had a nontraditional path to eventually founding one of the top skincare companies today.

About 10 years ago, Tsai decided to leave her thriving career and travel the world in search of happiness and meaning in her life.


When visiting Kyoto, Japan as part of her travels, Tsai said she had a life-changing meeting with a geisha. She learned some of their natural skincare secrets which healed her skin and soul in the truest sense and she wanted to bring the same experience back with her to the U.S.

"I think a lot of us when we feel lost, we travel, it's somehow as if I can't find myself in in this moment in this life, maybe if I take myself out of this situation to you know, places very foreign, and where I have no safety net, then maybe that's when I'll find myself," she said.

Tsai's success did not come easy. She struggled for years to get her company off the ground and was over $600,000 in debt at the time. When she started it, there were few direct-to-consumer brands. Asian beauty and skincare wasn't a thing and no one was interested in clean formulas for their skin.

Today, Tatcha is available in Sephora and QVC and is the second fastest-growing, women-led company on the Inc 5000 list. Last year, Unilever acquired Tatcha for a reported $500 million.

Tsai said Tatcha has also partnered with the nonprofit Room to Read in their mission to educate girls globally. She said the company has so far sponsored over 3 million days of school.

In the rest of this episode, Tsai talks about how social entrepreneurship and business can be a vehicle for social change and how the Room to Read program changed her perspective on money, risk and success.

Want to hear more of the Behind Her Empire podcast? Subscribe on Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, iHeart Radio or wherever you get your podcasts.

dot.LA Audience Engagement Editor Luis Gomez contributed to this post.

Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every headline.

Cadence

A New Invite-Only NFT Marketplace Is Coming out of Beta

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is dot.LA's Editorial Fellow. Prior to that, she was an editorial intern at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

Image courtesy of Folio

For Joey Primiani, designing a new NFT marketplace is just the latest stop in what’s been a long and fascinating trip through the world of tech.

After stints at Google and Cortex and a gig developing Lady Gaga’s online fan community, Primiani, together with business partner Mirko Kiefer, unveiled his latest venture this week: Folio, a social network that offers artists a platform and tools to showcase their NFT creations.

Read more Show less

Introducing 'Moves': Our New Weekly Recap of Job Changes in LA Tech

Molly Wright
Molly Wright is an intern for dot.LA. She previously edited the London School of Economics’ student newspaper in the United Kingdom, interned for The Hollywood Reporter and was the blogging editor for UCLA’s Daily Bruin.
Photo by Clem Onojeghuo on Unsplash

This is the first installment of Moves—a weekly feature highlighting job and career changes around the Los Angeles and Southern California tech ecosystem.

Moves is presented by Interchange.LA, dot.LA's recruiting and career platform connecting Southern California's most exciting companies with top tech talent. Create a free Interchange.LA profile here. And if you're looking for ways to supercharge your recruiting efforts, find out more about Interchange.LA's white-glove recruiting service by emailing sharmineh@dot.LA.

Read more Show less

Shipment Tracking Startup Route Claims Unicorn Status After $200 Million Funding Round

Harri Weber

Do you know something we should know about L.A. tech or venture capital? Reach out securely via Signal: +1 917 434 4978.

Harri is dot.LA's senior finance reporter. She previously worked for Gizmodo, Fast Company, VentureBeat and Flipboard. Find her on Twitter and send tips on L.A. startups and venture capital to harrison@dot.la.

Ecommerce shipment tracking startup Route—which is based in the “Silicon Slopes” hotbed surrounding Salt Lake City but has a growing presence in Los Angeles—is now claiming unicorn status after raising $200 million in new funding at a $1.25 billion valuation.

Read more Show less
RELATEDEDITOR'S PICKS
LA TECH JOBS
interchangeLA
Trending