Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Retail onslaught - my comments

When I started this blog sometime back, I just wanted to document some of my experiences based on my interaction with the members of the marketing and trading community in our town.

Little did I know that I would end up documenting protests against the retail onslaught at a national level.

Never did I imagine in my wildest thoughts that there would be such large scale protests in the country against the big players as a result of which a giant of the size and stature of Reliance would have to shut down its outlefts and consider withdrawal from some of the states.

We are at a stage where government intervention is desirable so that all parties involved survive and thrive.

Protest by Retailers in Maharashtra at Mumbai

Today (10-October-2007), representatives from all sections of the supply chain including farmers, traders, wholesalers, hawkers and daily wage workers from areas around Mumbai gathered at Azad Maidan in Mumbai to protest the decision of the government to allow FDI in retail ventures by overseas and big domestic businesses.

Most establishments, including wholesale markets and retail shops across Mumbai, the financial capital of the country, and its suburbs were closed. The protest was organized under the banner of Federation of Associations of Maharashtra (FAM) who had given a voluntary trade shutdown across the state.

Click here for details of the protest.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Indian Druggist Association launches marketing arm to keep off competition

The All India Druggists and Chemists Association has launched a marketing company in which many of its members have joined as shareholders.

The move was initiated by the top brass of the association to head-off multinational pharmaceutical marketing companies that have been trying to enter the Indian arena on a large scale.

In these competitive times activities of the large corporates are being fine tuned to harness their strengths, the weaknesses are being either off-loaded or out-sourced. Specialized marketing outfits have been reported to be approaching the Indian pharmaceutical manufacturers to take onus of marketing their products at all levels - distribution to retail.

When the office bearers of the national association learnt of the forthcoming threat to their existing work culture the initial reaction was to not allow such marketing companies to start operations in the country.

After subsequent deliberations and discussions is was accepted that such invasions by marketing outfits could only be delayed and not completely stopped. So instead of beating the competition they decided to join them.

As a result the association has floated a limited company and invited applications for promotional shares from its members.

This I believe is a novel way of surviving the retail onslaught that is making inroads in the country.