A new consumer will emerge in the post-COVID-19 era
Will drive new business models while setting the foundation for innovative products and services
by Anshu Budhraja, CEO, Amway India
“The global pandemic has shown its impact across industries, including the direct selling industry. While we, at Amway India, are expecting short-term to mid-term impact like many businesses, we are positive about coming out of this stronger than ever. However, our priority is to follow all Government guidelines to contain the spread of COVID-19.
Prioritizing the safety of our employees, direct sellers and our consumers, we deployed responsive strategies to ensure business continuity and maintain operational readiness from time to time. We have constituted a COVID-19 Crisis Committee comprising select members of the leadership team. The team is responsible for charting out and guiding the crisis strategy for the Indian market.
Amidst all the limitations and challenges, we thank the Government of India for recognizing the need for including nutraceuticals and health supplements as ‘essential food’ items, allowing us to continue the manufacturing of the essential goods at our plant. Despite the scarcity of labour and supply chain disruptions, we have been able to recover and resume operations.
The public health emergency has paved the way for increased awareness of holistic and preventive healthcare among consumers. Now self-care and immunity building has gained significant momentum among communities. It reflects in a spurt in demand for our products in Nutrilite portfolio with preference for herbal SKUs -. The category’s contribution is expected to grow faster with current contribution of 56% is expected to increase to 65%. We are further building upon the category with special focus on immunity-boosting products such as Nutrilite All Plant Protein Powder, Nutrilite Daily, Nutrilite Natural C, amongst others. At least in the medium term, we expect that these products will remain in grocery shopping lists and become key revenue drivers for the company in the space.
With the increasing volatility in the job market owing to a current crisis scenario, we foresee entrepreneurship as a desired/ viable career by choice. The trend gives a huge thrust to the Direct selling industry as it offers a zero-investment guided entrepreneurial opportunity. As people look for flexibility, personal growth along with supplemental income, we believe the gig economy will become a significant driver of the economy in the coming years.
Interestingly, COVID-19 has proved to be a catalyst for a smooth transition of our business from the offline to the online. We foresee continued digital transformations at every level of our operations. Hence, our efforts will continue to build and strengthen our digital capabilities to ensure efficient functioning of the business. All our training and meetings with the direct sellers has shifted online and have conducted over 2500 online training programs engaging over 5.50 lakhs Amway Direct Sellers since the lockdown. Moreover, there is a significant shift to online ordering from 33.6% in Feb 2020 to 90% that demanded smart management of orders and tie-up with new vendors for product deliveries at home. We are hoping to bounce back our business to stability in next 45 days and with the second phase starting May 18th, post the Government’s direction on labour reforms and factory operations etc., we are hopeful to achieve 80 -90% level of business which was before pre-lockdown by July 2020.
We firmly believe that a new consumer will emerge in the post-COVID-19 era, which will drive new business models while setting the foundation for innovative products and services.”