Last week at the HBA Global Expo in New York City my second presentation on the BRIC markets walked the audience through the various channels of distribution in Brazil, Russia, India, and China. We looked at food stores in Brazil, open markets in Russia, kiranas in India, hypermarkets in China, and direct sales and specialty stores across all countries, among others.
I wrapped the talk up with some key takeaways, some of which I will share with you now and in the coming days.
To start: Key Lesson #1 – The economic crisis is global. BRIC countries are more protected but are not immune.
You don’t need me to tell you that the world is in the midst of the worst economic crisis in recent history. Consumers are saving more and are buying less. Virtually every marketer and retailer is struggling. Many firms are going out of business. Brands are being discontinued. Retailers are shutting their doors. Times are bad.
Yes, times are particularly bad in the developed markets, namely the U.S., Japan, and Western Europe. But the BRICs have slowed down too. Growth is still double digit, but we are no longer seeing high double-digit increases. Low consumer confidence levels of neighboring mature markets have rubbed off. Marketers and retailers that once had big expansion plans to the BRICs are now scaling back. These markets have become more penetrated, reducing the opportunity for growth.
Don’t get me wrong, these markets are still booming, and every marketer would be wise to look to these markets for future growth… just don’t expect the explosive sales we had seen in the last decade.
Check back for key lesson #2: All four BRIC markets embrace Western concepts and products.
Thank you for sharing!