Monday, Jul 13, 2015
Dubai: Many companies in the UAE seem to be doing well compared to their counterparts abroad, with nearly half (47 per cent) of the retailers and consumer goods companies in the country saying that their income had improved by more than 10 per cent in 2014.
KPMG and Consumer Goods Forum, which conducted the study, said the figure is higher than the global trend, where only a small number (15 per cent) saw more than 10 per cent growth last year.
All of the companies surveyed in the UAE were also unanimous in saying that over the next one or two years, they will be focusing on further expansion and “top line growth”. Globally, around three quarters rated growth as very important to their business.
Anurag Bajpai, partner retail at KPMG Lower Gulf, said the UAE’s macroeconomic policies have contributed to the positive performance of businesses in the country. “[The policies] have contributed to sustained growth and development of the country over the past few years. Further, a young and growing population, coupled with economic diversification, continued investment in infrastructure projects and increased public and private sector spending has made the UAE a lucrative destination for consumer companies to do business,” he told Gulf News.
Likewise, as more consumers prefer online shopping or turn to social media, companies in the UAE are looking to “omni-channel” to further drive growth. Omni-channel is the use of a variety of channels, including retail stores, mobile and online shops, telephone sales in dealing with customers.
Businesses are, however, concerned about cyber risks, with 70 per cent of the UAE respondents saying that protecting customer and company data in an increasingly digital world is going to be a challenge over the next two years.
“The focus on omni-channel echoes the exceptionally strong annual growth in e-commerce globally, as well as the increased role of the internet throughout the customer’s path to purchase and the supply chain. However, delivering on omni-channel potential is widely recognized as a challenge,” said Anurag Bajpai, partner with KPMG Lower Gulf and head of retail practice.
KPMG’s third annual “Top of Mind” consumer survey, was conducted globally during the first quarter of 2015 among 539 senior executives from companies in the consumer manufacturing and retail sector with at least $250 million in revenues.
Willy Kruh, global chairman of KPMG’s consumer markets practice said that with top line expansion and growth being this year’s top priority as well as the top challenge for companies, the survey data clearly shows that a new battleground is emerging—how to understand and win over customers.
By Cleofe Maceda Senior Web Reporter
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