India to be $10tn economy in 2030, says D Shivakumar of Aditya Birla at ISA CEO Conference

Shivakumar, Group Executive President Corporate-Strategy and Business Development, Aditya Birla, talks about how digital as an emerging market is a huge unifier and not a divider

by exchange4media Staff
Published - Mar 19, 2019 9:10 AM Updated: Mar 19, 2019 9:10 AM
shivakumar

The second edition of the ISA CEO Conference that was held on Monday saw many dignitaries talk about the connectedness paradox. D Shivakumar, Group Executive President, Corporate-Strategy and Business Development, Aditya Birla, gave an insightful speech on Rethink and Rework, Competitive strategies for a new interconnected paradigm. 

Speaking about being interconnected, Shivakumar explained how more than advertising, engagement would be the key in the coming days. “Every business connects to the other. No business is an island. Every event that happens has an impact on your business. You recognise that if you want to stay in an interconnected world. In the next decade, you will be more interconnected than you can imagine.”

Shivakumar explains how everything we use today - be it phones, cameras or clothes - are all interconnected. “All toys are from China, speakers from Vietnam, cameras from Japan and apparels are from Bangladesh,” he pointed out. “The best global brands are the best local brands today. Global best brands like McDonald’s adapt their menu to their relevant country. In India, they have aloo tikka.” 

Coming to statistics, Shivakumar made some interesting predictions regarding the fate of digital India in the coming years. He predicted that India would be a $10 trillion economy in 2030. “About 60 per cent of that will be domestic consumption. India has always been a domestic-led market. China is about 40 per cent. India will be richer, younger and a more educated country, and also more connected.” He also shared how the income of the Indian middle class would change dramatically in 2030.

Furthermore to his analysis of what India would be in 2030, Shivakumar continued, “India will be digitally united by 2030. Digital as an emerging market is a huge unifier. It is not a divider. India will have 1 billion people on the internet via smartphones. We have skipped once and for all the laptop age, we flirted with tablet era, that’s also gone. Now, the phone screens will go bigger and will have all the functionalities of either a laptop or a tablet, we tend to use the phone a lot more. Smartphones will be a dominant tool in the future.”

Shivakumar also reveals how video will become big in the coming years. “Search engines are going vernacular. We have seen that with concepts like ‘Who wants to be a Billionaire’ or ‘Dancing With the Stars’. All these big concepts globally, when translated into vernacular, are as popular in Odisha, Tamil Nadu or Kerala as it is in the USA. Consumer voice matters a lot and if you are not serious about taking that right into your boardroom, then you will be in trouble.”
India has the cheapest data price in the world. It is at $0.26/1GB of mobile data whereas Switzerland has the highest price of $20.22/1GB for mobile data. “Everybody is talking and sharing with everybody. This is the interconnected world we live in. India has the second cheapest handsets in the world. So if you see, to enable interconnectedness, we have two of the biggest ones already,” explained Shivakumar.

Digital transparency will ensure newer business models. “For example, the subscription business model of Bombay Shaving Club. We have never thought of the subscription business model in the pass. Only a subscription business model that was successful in India in the past was magazines. But I believe more and more business will get into subscription today,” Shivakumar said. He also broadly explained how renting furniture would become a big business in future. That’s because people don’t want to own. They would rather pay money. “Why I am renting? Because I am closer to the information of seller buyer and user. I know exactly who used it and what I am willing to pay,” said Shivakumar. He also mentioned how it would be the same in the case for cars, apparels and many more. As for e-commerce, he predicted that ease of shopping would be a huge factor for interconnectedness.

Premiumization will accelerate and the growth will be 53 per cent with more attention grabbing technology at the point of purchase. Consumers will give their right arm for both education and health. Training in companies will be interconnected now. Health and food sector will grow dramatically in the next few years, he added. 

The physical distribution of technology will not work anymore in this digital age. “Those who are big today, the digital guys will mercilessly murder them. They have zero cost, have all the margin and premium. If they play smart, India is waiting to premiumize and waiting for better options,” Shivakumar signed off.

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