Grocery chains have played a huge role during the successive lockdowns by enabling an uninterrupted supply of essentials for millions of households in the country. One such chain is national capital New Delhi’s leading brand name Pansari Group.
Pansari Group began its foray into the world of the grocery business in 1962 with a single shop aiming to serve people with the best quality products and a dream of creating our own identity. With over 70+ years of experience and the third generation now entering the business, the name Pansari has become the most trusted brand in Delhi NCR with the highest market share.
In an exclusive interview with DKODING Media, Shammi Agarwal, Director, Pansari Group opens up on how the brand is overcoming several challenges and ensuring safe and hygienic, contactless grocery delivery for more than 100,000 families, not just in India but also abroad.
Q: Please tell us about the current exploits of Pansari Group.
We have a portfolio of over 270+ SKUs and a network of 729+ distributors and 145527+ retailers. We are associated with some of the biggest institutional clients and government organizations for regular supplies. Furthermore, our products are also exported to over 33+ countries globally. The journey for Pansari Group has been quite rewarding, and I am sure that with our continuous efforts we will soon be India’s most trusted and loved brand too.
Watch: Range of Pansari Group Products
Q: How has the pandemic and successive lockdowns impacted you?
Well, it’s quite unfortunate how this pandemic has pushed our economy down with different industries being impacted adversely. However, we have been grateful to be a part of the FMCG industry with the selling of essentials. We have experienced a stark increase in demand for products from the direct consumer.
On the contrary, the demand from the hotel industry shows a slump due to shutting down of restaurants and hotels due to successive lockdowns. Though the business has been great for us and the numbers look positive, we are facing a challenge with manufacturing and supply chain due to migration of labour in heavy numbers to rural areas. Therefore, it has been a stressful environment.
Q: How do you see Coronavirus affecting the FMCG sector in the long term?
There are multiple impacts that this pandemic is expected to leave on consumer choices and industry as a whole.
If we talk about the consumer end, the realization of the benefits of healthy living, the importance of high immunity, and fresh and healthy eating has made consumers more conscious about their choices. We expect consumers to shift towards eating fresh and healthy home-cooked food. Consumption from households has increased substantially and we expect it to be the trend for a good period from now.
Moreover, the lockdown has encouraged the consumer to switch to online shopping and we can expect online sales of FMCG products to contribute substantially to the growth of this sector. We have seen high demand from online sales portals like Grofers, Amazon, Big Basket etc. In addition, we have also launched our website and app with the name of World of Mart to further support and promote online buying behaviour, keeping the consumer home and safe.
On the operational side, however, the migration of workers to rural areas has impacted logistics and supply chains. This shortage of labour is expected to remain in the long run as well.
In terms of exports, since the lockdown has happened across the globe, essential demand has risen throughout the world. We are also seeing a lot of demand for ready to eat products. To cater to them we also introduced a healthy and tasty whole wheat instant pasta by the name of TAPAS.
Also, with the encouragement of Make in India, and lesser availability of foreign products during this period, we can expect Indian consumers to consume more Indian brands, therefore increasing the demand in the long run.
Q: From the CEO’s perspective, what are the biggest challenges in the future for the distribution setup?
Well from my perspective, there are 2 major challenges that I see.
The first is that arising from the shortage of workers moving back to rural areas, as their model is majorly dependent on the workforce for meeting the demand from the market.
The second challenge that distributor setups can probably face in the future is that arising due to the shift of consumers to online shopping. The market for local distributors could squeeze a little in the future pertaining to this shift.
Having said that, we are still in a very early stage to accurately gauge the long-term trends that the market might experience due to this pandemic.
Watch: Director of Pansari Group Mr Shammi Agarwal