As India battles the second wave of COVID, there have been lockdown-like restrictions across the country. Harsh Mariwala, Chairman of Marico, gauged the current consumer sentiment as India begins to unlock.
“I strongly feel that growth will definitely improve in the July-September quarter,” he said in an interview with CNBC-TV18.
“I believe that the second wave of COVID-19 ebbing down is definitely going to have a positive impact on the overall demand because the mood has improved in the last two weeks,” he added.
In terms of demand, Mariwala said overall growth would be impacted because of the pandemic.
He believes e-commerce trend will increase in the future. “The consumer is now used to ordering on e-commerce platforms and it is much more convenient. So, I see that trend increasing in the future also. But to say that the brick and mortar is going to fall is completely false. We ourselves have seen that the smaller grocers have done extremely well in the last level of closures. The percentage of e-commerce will go up but brick and mortar stores are likely to remain as well. Consumers want to go to the stores to see the products, experience the modern trade,” he stated.
In terms of consumer sentiment in rural India, he mentioned, “More than urban/rural, I would talk about the sector - if you are talking about loan defaults, whether it is business loans or personal loans. In case of business loans, a lot will depend on what sector are you in. So, sectors which have been badly impacted - whether it is hospitality, hotels, tourism – will have higher default of loans.”
For the full interview, watch the accompanying video.