Buildingandinteriors.com presents part 3* of the series on what the leading manufacturers and stakeholders in the Indian building materials industry think could define the post-Covid19 markets.
The Covid19 pandemic has had no parallel in the history of mankind – we are faced with an adversity in which health and economy had to be tackled together. It’s effect on the global and the Indian economy is unprecedented. A new normal would emerge out of this adversity. Businesses across the world have been going to the extent of dividing the time on pre-corona and post-corona eras.
As businesses start to open in the post-corona period, some of the prominent changes which look imminent would be in the areas of:
1. Global supply chains – Could be less efficient but more resilient amidst rising industrial nationalism.
2. Faster route to market – Agility and flexibility would be the key. Digitization of services and organisation would be ‘the’ way to operate.
3. Core manufacturing could lead way to service and solution organisations.
4. Work from home would be the new way of office infra structure. Space optimization would further lead to crash of commercial realty sector.
5. It may lead to GIG economy. Peak time recruitment, furloughs, contractual manpower could be the new norm.
6. Leadership and team management would change. Structured hierarchies would pave way for networked businesses. Teams and its management beyond borders would be the new normal.
7. Face to face meetings, conferences, events would make way for a virtual world!
8. Last but not the least, minimization would replace extravagant and luxury sector. Value for money would take precedence over rest of the considerations.
Mr.Shyam Sujan, Secretary General, ELCOMA
In the field of lighting, we can expect many changes in the post Covid19 world. Work from home – a concept popular mainly with the software/backend industry till recently, has come to define the work culture across industries. Going forward, a large portion of the workforce will work from home. This will give rise to new kinds of domestic lighting, which would need to change according to the environment of the user. After the work is over, he/she may like to change to softer/relaxed colours – lighting that will change the mood. Here futuristic intelligent lighting will come into play.
We could be looking at many lighting applications that were limited to office/commercial applications that now enter home segments. In that context, the segmentation between the domestic lighting and commercial lighting may blur. With more people working from home, offices could become smaller and require different lighting solutions. Besides, artificial intelligence (AI) will help in giving well programmed results to create required ambience. I think technology and AI will play an important role in lighting in the post-Covid19 world.
Mr.Gaurav Malhotra, Managing Director, Hansgrohe India Pvt.Ltd.
I believe that one of the first takeaways from this unfortunate pandemic will be the increased levels of hygiene and sanitation across the country. As has been the practice at Hansgrohe, we will continue to be a leading provider of solutions aiding hygiene. We also have a large range of contact-less, sensor based faucets which are generally used in commercial applications. We will work closely with the external stakeholders to ensure the product portfolio meets the customer needs.
It will be fair to say that the sales process has been severely impacted by the current state of affairs. In the month of April, all our channel partners were closed and hence there was very limited activity on the ground. I believe that the sales process will undergo some changes in the coming future. The bathroom fittings category has not been dominant on the e-commerce platforms and I feel it’s only a matter of time when the share of this category’s participation in the e-commerce platform grows significantly. We are working to be prepared for the same.
This is the time when relationships matter at both the manufacturer and channel partners’ end. We have to be aware and recognize the liquidity challenge that our channel partners would face in the short term and work on the support for the same. At the same time, our channel partners would also double their efforts to generate business at a stronger pace. Safety would have to be factored in as paramount, both for the employees and customers. We expect things to stabilize in the mid-term.
Mr.C.V.Dilipkumar, Managing Director, Schell India Pvt.Ltd.
Covid19 pandemic has had a major impact on the markets worldwide. With India been in lockdown for almost 2 months, the India market has also been adversely affected. SCHELL is in the business of plumbing solutions. We need to take care of not just selling our products but also offer help in installation and after sales support. As markets start opening, and with the need for hand hygiene, we see a good demand for our sensor-based and touch-less solutions.
We already have our detailed catalogues in the digital formats and that we will be able to give to the Architects and Consultants. In my view, most of the information flow will move to the online space, as has already happened with markets in Europe and United States some years ago. Covid19 only fast forwarded that to markets like India.