According to IMF World Economic Outlook (Oct 2016), India is the fourth fastest growing country with its GDP projected to accelerate at 7.6% (2016) (1) and pegged at an estimated value of INR 121.65 lakh crores (2). The quickly evolving retail industry in India constitutes over 10% of the country’s GDP making it a prime attraction for foreign investment. India’s retail sector ranks fifth in the list of favorite global destinations for foreign investments. From US$600 billion in 2015, India’s retail market is estimated to reach US$ 1 trillion by 2020. The domestic retail market is expected to grow at 12% p.a. (3).
Given the favorable statistics, it may be imperative to ask – can retail businesses in India be a part of this joy ride and grow proportionately or beyond?
What constitutes growth?
Increased sales? Yes. Increased profitability? Yes. Decreased expenditure? Mark them all yes. In the last two or three decades, the idea of growth has expanded to include other determinants like increased share value and net worth, low employee turnover, higher customer and employee satisfaction, professional management and so on. With the passage of time and radical changes in the external environment like the internet, LPG etc, the old school parameters of growth albeit quintessential are not enough for business growth. In fact, in a dynamic and ever-evolving business industry like retail, growth, and survival are no longer two different concepts. For a retail business, the need of the hour is customer delight, display, speed, accuracy, integration, HR, risk management, social media, gen X, blazing fast internet, ERP, Big Data, mobile applications, customer and so on. Retailers cannot expect to achieve higher growth by doing just the same old things again and again.
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