Chairman and MD Vivek Ltd
In Retrospect: 2012
The year 2012 has witnessed a rather subdued market. In particular, the severe power outages in upcountry towns of Tamil Nadu have led to severe drop in purchases of appliances. With subdued demand, competition has also become more intense. The cumulative impact of all these factors has been severe, posing a great challenge to Viveks as much as to all other retailers in the consumer durables segment. One of the key initiatives taken during 2012 has been to identify IT and Telecom segment as a major focus area considering the fact that IT and Telecom market is more than twice the size of the consumer durables market. While these products were introduced in many of the outlets, we also decided to create a new format exclusively for IT and Telecom products. Christened Viveks Digital 1, the first outlet in this format was opened in Bangalore during mid 2012 where computers, laptops, mobile phones, cameras and accessories are displayed and sold.
Arrival of FDI
The decision on FDI in multi-brand retail has come after a long delay and is indeed a welcome move. This will benefit every stakeholder, with the consumer being the greatest beneficiary. It would help eliminate waste and improve efficiency particularly in the supply chain management of farm produce with establishment of more cold storages. This will in turn ensure remunerative prices for the farmer while offering affordable prices to the consumers. The government will also benefit from greater revenues through better tax compliance.
Looking Ahead: 2013
Emergence of global players will keep domestic players like us on our toes and we will need to constantly improve operating efficiencies and also take initiatives to bring in the best operating practices into our operations. We will need to constantly address changing customer needs and expectations and keep pace with the times to ensure that we attract and retain customers. Innovation will play a key role in differentiating ourselves from competition and provide an important competitive advantage to sustain and grow in the market place.