Vineet Gautam, CEO, Bestseller, India, talked about the response of his brand to COVID-19, said, “COVID-19 has put to challenging times and all retailers are reacting differently. At present, Bestseller is concentrating on making new business plans – how to look at stores, how to look at hygiene, how consumer requirements will change and how technology will change.”
“In the near future, when we have customers in our stores, we cannot afford to not stock the right products. Similarly, none of us can afford to have too much inventory lying in one place, blocking cash and in another place have nothing,” he further said. Gautam was answering questions posed to him by Stylumia in a webinar.
Stylumia, founded by Ganesh Subramanian, is focused on creating the world’s easiest user experience. It builds platforms for securing data, integrating and layered with applications for user-friendly AI-assisted analysis.
“Considering the pandemic situation, capital has become a key part for all business. As cash is a big constraint amid Covid-19, we have to be conscious and ensure that cash is used and deployed well. We must also use the right technology, algorithms and logic to figure out the most relevant product in each market today – this can be key to every brand’s success,” Gautam said.
He added that going hyperlocal will become a reality, with changing consumer behaviour post Covid-19. “Once businesses stabilize in the next one year, the agenda of sustainability will again come to the forefront. It will once more, become a top priority for consumers,” he explained.
Learning from Other Countries
He said that Bestseller has 7,000 stores in China and in the 7 weeks that they have re-opened their stores in that country, the brand has witnessed a 70 percent business revival and is confident that it will go 100 percent soon.
“The big learning which is coming from the Covid-19 pandemic is that social selling is picking up pace. In Europe, we are observing that stores have already re-opened in high-streets and have gained about 30 percent of their business back. Also, Instagram shopping is leading the way. So, going ahead, digital commerce is going to become big,” he concluded.