Monthly Archives: July 2020


While many industries around the globe are still stressed due to the coronavirus pandemic, some retailers are finding new ways to cope and meet the increase in e-commerce demand. The innovation is not just limited to retailers but examples of it are visible across brands, sectors, and channels. Let’s take a look at the week gone by and see how retail in India fared:

 

Flipkart acquires Walmart India, steps up Kirana game against JioMart

India’s online retailer Flipkart has acquired Walmart India, the cash-and-carry wholesale business of retail giant Walmart.

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Why crowd marketing must become the new normal for brands

The onset of the coronavirus, and the global lockdown that has accompanied it, has had a seismic impact on businesses across the world.

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Don’t just think consumer, think community. It helps build brands

What worked for the brands that helped them upend players with more financial clout and greater market share.

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An FMCG analyst shares a picture of what’s selling in rural India and what’s not

As COVID-19 started to spread across the nation, the lockdown announced in the last week of March did have a knee jerk reaction on the overall demand on the FMCG sector.

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The Big Kirana Revolution

As one more company adopts the brick and mortar model to give it’s business a boost, COVID-19 helped the nation realize how indispensable kirana stores are, it was the stores that people first rushed to during the lockdown.

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What sold or didn’t in lockdown: Bread, jam up, ice-cream down

As India remained locked down in April and May to control the spread of the novel coronavirus, people bought more bread, cheese, coffee, and jams but less fruity cakes.

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Direct to Consumer emerges as an alternate sustainable retail strategy post-COVID-19

The recent lockdown sprees have compelled the brands to look at alternative ways to provide consumers the products they need. Therefore, many brands are offering direct-to-consumer (DTC) home delivery services for the first time amid the COVID-19 lockdown.

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DLF Shopping Malls to go digital to promote contactless dining

The digital technology will empower restaurants and food courts within DLF Shopping Malls to offer a seamless customer journey and a safe dining experience. With convenience features like digital menus, pre-ordering, table booking, digital payments and digital feedback.

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Small cities help online beauty firms Nykaa, Sugar Cosmetics, others get their sheen back

Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities are largely driving the demand, as the lockdown has eased considerably there, while certain pockets in metros- where people are decking up for virtual events like Zoom parties and Instagram videos, are also seeing a spike in orders.

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RIL inches closer to buying Future Group’s retail business

RIL will acquire the retail, supply chain, and related businesses of Future, which will mark the end of founder Kishore Biyani’s play in India’s modern retail.

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Throughout the pandemic, consumer demand has differed across product categories. While the relatively inelastic demand for traditional products such as personal care and hygiene items has driven growth, the discretionary categories have witnessed a decline, depressing overall sales. Consumers have also grown more price-sensitive and have exhibited a larger propensity to buy local and engage in conscious, savings-driven consumption. The future may, however, hold certain surprises. Let’s peep into the past week to discover more:

 

COVID lockdown impact: In cities, pharmacies emerge as a new hotspot for FMCG sales

Chemist shops have emerged as the new grocery store for Indian consumers, particularly in urban areas, as they are allowed to operate for longer hours compared with local kiranas and even modern trade.

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According to Nielsen Global Connect, there are 4 main consumption drivers in post-COVID India

Healthy food, personal and home hygiene, medical expenses, and fitness are main consumer drivers, then there is education and then entertainment and investment.

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79% of consumers change purchase preferences

The report finds that sustainability has risen up the customer’s agenda with 79 percent of consumers changing their purchase preferences based on social responsibility, inclusiveness, or environmental impact.

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FMCG firms partner with businesses to sell hygiene kits

For companies selling sanitizers, soaps, and disinfectants, large orders are likely to firm up as businesses resume.

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Signs of FMCG revival to pre-COVID levels in June; rural beats urban India in the growth trend

The FMCG industry is finally exhibiting signs of revival to pre-COVID levels in the month of June after demand starts to pick up for certain categories.

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RB looking at every opportunity in India to provide a full range of products

RB sells a range of hygiene products in India including Dettol, Lizol, Harpic, while in health it has some popular brands as Disprin and Strepsils. However, some of its global brands such as Cilit Bang, Mucinex, and Nurofen are yet to be introduced here in the country.

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Britannia may have sold more biscuits during the COVID-19 lockdown than ever before

The revenue for India’s largest biscuits maker Britannia is expected to grow anywhere from 18% to 23% in the April-June 2020 period.

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COVID Boom: Ready-to-cook food sales rise as India gives stay-at-home advice

The ready-to-cook foods segment is seeing accelerated growth as the stay-at-home advisory gives people a chance to broaden their culinary engagement and bring home the joy of dining out.

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Godrej aims to grow the hygiene business to Rs 500 crore in 3 years

Godrej’s wider hygiene products portfolio, which includes sanitizers, masks, disinfectant sprays, and dishwash gels, was created over a 90-day period sensing an opportunity as Covid-19 changed consumer behaviour.

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JioMart’s entry into multiple categories may trigger a wave of consolidation talk

A significant uptick in mergers and acquisitions is anticipated in India’s startup ecosystem over the next three to six months, as companies and their investors gear up for a year starved of both capital and revenue due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

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Demand has picked up with the easing of restrictions but the prevalence of localized lockdowns supply chain still has some way to go before getting back to pre-COVID levels. That being said, innovations during the pandemic has opened new pathways and channels which are here to stay. New products, solutions, and services continue to launch at great speed.  With the contradictions of disruption & innovation, slump & growth in perspective, let’s take a look at the week that was:

 

COVID-19: A global view of how consumer behaviour is changing

Consumer behaviours are settling into a new normal, as people everywhere learn to live with the reality of COVID-19 and as more countries reopen parts of their economies.

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Rural leads the way back for FMCG

FMCG growth is being propelled by rural more than the urban population, mainly due to the huge migration of people from metros to smaller towns and villages.

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Parle, Amul, Clinic Plus shampoo top 3 FMCG brands in India: Report

Findings of the latest edition of the Kantar Worldpanel’s Brand Footprint Report released on Friday shows that Parle, Amul, and Clinic Plus shampoo are the top three fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) brands in India.

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The New Age of Retail – intriguing perspective by CEO of CPM India

As we come to the end of 2025 and talk about the next five years in retail and consumers, let’s reflect on how the last five years came to become perhaps the most interesting years Indian retail has ever seen.

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According to Kantar, the FMCG sector to grow 4-5% in 2020

Covid-19 prompted households to buy more during every trip to the grocery store even as they reduced their frequency of trips.

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According to Sanjiv Goenka, Indian online grocery market can exceed Rs 22,500 cr sales in 2020

The Indian online grocery market could exceed sales of about Rs 22,500 crore in 2020, a substantial 76 percent jump over the previous year, Spencer’s Retail Chairman Sanjiv Goenka said.

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In COVID-19 world, digital distribution platforms become a strong alternative for FMCG majors

The coronavirus lockdown and the distribution disruption thereof, has forced consumer product companies to take a hard look at their distribution strategy.

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ITC, Godrej, Dabur, Emami report robust sales in rural areas

Leading FMCG players such as ITC, Godrej, Dabur, Emami, and Marico are witnessing robust sales in rural and semi-urban markets, bolstering hopes of a speedy recovery from the impact of the COVID-19 crisis.

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British retailer Tesco & Tata infuse fresh capital into JV, Trent Hypermarket

Tesco once again wants to expand the food and grocery retailing business in India, which had lost steam over the past few years to Reliance and Amazon-Samara-owned supermarket chain more in the west and south.

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According to D-Mart, stores recover 80 percent of pre-COVID sales

Avenue Supermarts Ltd, which owns and operates retail chain D-Mart, on Saturday said it has recovered 80 percent of its business in the stores, wherever it has been allowed to operate unhindered.

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Britannia beats coronavirus blues with this much sales growth; outshines peer FMCG firms amid lockdown

Biscuit and bread maker Britannia is an outlier with its sales and PAT estimated to be in double-digit during the lockdown even while FMCG companies, in general, remained downbeat due to coronavirus.

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Neighbourhood gets retail stores on wheels

Reliance Brands, which sells several brands, including Brooks Brothers, Burberry, Jimmy Choo, and Gas, has asked the staff at its stores to showcase products to consumers through video calls with Zoom and MS Teams.

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As we enter the second week of Unlock 2.0, there have been varying responses from states. Some have chosen to continue with most of the restrictions, some have chosen to liberalize faster. Each measure has had an impact, be it good or bad, on retail. The retail sector still continues to be in flux. Having said that, there is cause for cheer with most categories and channels picking up the pace and demand getting back on track. Let’s take a look at what happened in the world of retail in the past week.

 

Record surge in sales of vacuum cleaners, dishwashers, and other DIY products

The June quarter saw a surge in sales in these products as well as products that serve DIY needs for personal grooming like epilators and trimmers. Many companies have completely sold out their stock in most of these categories.

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The ‘new normals’ for consumer-retail-relationship: short-term and long-term

The economic downturn that the pandemic has brought about will make most consumers wary about their shopping expenditures, particularly their ‘discretionary’ spends.

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What’s next for CPG brands in unprecedented times

In response to the evolving impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the consumer packaged goods industry is focused on adapting supply chains, manufacturing, and marketing to meet the rapid changes in demand.

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Kirana stores become new supermarkets amid coronavirus lockdown; aim to go online

While supermarkets and shopping malls were completely shut down during the nationwide lockdown, it’s the local kirana stores that took the baton to supply essential products to households.

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Winning Retail 2.0 with Embedded Analytics

A location-enabled micro-market level planning for sales as well as point of sales visibility and promotions will become really important to win in the new normal.

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Rural sales lead a revival

According to Nielsen, consumption growth in rural India — which make up 36 percent of the expenditure on fast-moving consumer goods (FMCGs) — has touched 85 percent of pre-COVID levels while growth in cities has touched 70 percent of the pre-COVID levels.

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Pandemic helped Kirana stores embrace technology: EY survey

The nationwide lockdown prompted kiranas to adopt technology quickly as millions of households moved online to buy essential supplies.

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What’s the impact of migrant movement on retail FMCG consumption?

From buying local brands to change of loyalty and the need for trust, we deep dive to see how migrant labour movement has changed retail FMCG consumption.

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Mars Wrigley India says families consuming more chocolates during the lockdown

Mars Wrigley India believes its diverse portfolio straddling across various price points is aiding the company’s sales during the times of the pandemic.

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Tata Consumer Products to focus on distribution, enter new categories

Packaged consumer goods company Tata Consumer Products Ltd. on Monday said it will work on building its reach and distribution in the Indian market after it moved to consolidate its businesses over the last year.

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COVID pushes ITC to expand personal and home hygiene portfolio

ITC has launched over four to five products under Savlon since cases of COVID-19 started to surge in India, taking the lead along with other companies such as HUL, CavinKare, Reckitt Benckiser, and Marico.

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Marico’s Saffola, Parachute beat lockdown blues; FMCG firm remains optimistic of Revival despite volatility

Two of Marico’s brands Saffola and Parachute have shown high volume growth even amid lockdown. Marico has attributed high sales of Saffola to an increase in in-home consumption as consumers remained confined to homes.

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As the nation gears up for Unlock 2.0 and almost all industries have gotten the nod to operate, almost every sector of retail, from grocers to clothing stores have seen dramatic changes over the past several months. But the news hasn’t all been bad. Plenty of retailers have accelerated adaptations that were in the future, to meet the needs of an increasingly digital society. The post COVID world in every aspect will be interesting, new, and full of innovation. Let us take a look at the week leading to the cusp of Unlock 2.0

 

As early shoppers step out, high street markets win over big malls

Retailers have witnessed tepid response since the lockdown restrictions were eased, with shoppers making short trips, spending less time, and buying exactly what they need from stores on high streets.

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FMCG demand in rural India robust, consumption growth reaches 85% of pre-COVID average sales

Consumption growth in rural India is outpacing the rate of expansion in cities and has already reached 85% of pre-COVID average sales underpinned by higher farm income, minimal retail disruption during the lockdown, and migrant workers returning home.

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RIL close to Future deal, poised to acquire the retail business of Future Group

At least three major entities promoted by Kishore Biyani—Future Retail, Future Lifestyle Fashions, and Future Supply Chain Solutions—would be merged, and the complete business will then be taken over by the oil-to-retail-to-telecom behemoth.

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Gurugram, Faridabad malls to reopen from July 1; social distancing, sanitization focal points

According to the Haryana Government, malls in Gurugram and Faridabad districts are all set to reopen from July 1 onwards after a three-month hiatus. A set of Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) released by the government.

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After hand sanitizers, FMCG firms make a dash for vegetables and fruit washes

After hand sanitizers, FMCG companies are cashing in on the emphasis on hygiene and safety by launching specialized products to disinfect vegetables, fruits, meat, and fish.

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Technology is the next big focus for 13 million Kirana

The onset of the pandemic has accelerated willingness of small businesses to use technology to scale up operations, opening up a market that had in the past viewed technology companies as a competitor.

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Voice and vernacular: The future of e-retail in India

With the Covid-19 pandemic causing a tectonic shift in purchasing trends across the world and in India, and consumers rapidly moving to online platforms, the next wave of e-retail growth in India is expected to significantly be powered by Bharat, or the other India, away from the major metros.

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The luxury retail store post-Covid-19

Luxury retail may bounce back earlier than other categories the world over. But there will be a few tweaks to the luxury retail store in light of the crisis.

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Retailers resort to video calls to curb store visits

To reduce the time spent in the stores and have fewer customers on-premises, customers can now pick products through video consultations and have them delivered or picked up via appointments.

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Shopping redefined: Pre-book slots at the mall, leave your kids at home

Through appointments, mall managers believe that they are more likely to get serious shoppers and it will be an opportunity to provide personalized shopping experiences.

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Momentum in online, app-based sales to stay for retailers

Many large brick-and-mortar retail chains that switched to online during the lockdown have reported a spike in sales from digital channels, and expect the momentum to continue as consumers prefer to order digitally despite restrictions are being eased.

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Fair & Lovely’s rebranding brings new opportunities for HUL and competitors

This forced churning, like all forced churning, might even do the brand franchise good, and enable it to compete in a more mainstream manner and appeal to a wider audience.

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Amazon kicks off Smart Stores retail digitization initiative in India

The initiative gives store owners the ability to create digital storefronts that showcase all their offerings. That feature is useful because it allows merchants to precisely track inventory while letting shoppers know individual stores’ product availability.

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Godrej Appliances sales reach the pre-COVID level, expect full capacity utilization by Sep

The company is expecting to attain its peak capacity by September, just before the festive season starts as the sales are gradually increasing due to various factors, including the opening of markets with reduced restrictions and pent up demand.

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