Vijay C Roy
Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 29
At a time when most of the businesses are facing a downturn, wellness product segment of the direct selling industry has registered a phenomenal growth. According to direct sellers, an increased awareness about the importance of immunity, health and nutrition resulted in the segment recording the highest year-on-year (y-o-y) growth of 20.45% during the first half (H1) of FY21.
Other segments such as homecare and household goods registered a combined y-o-y growth of 15.17% during the H1 of FY21 while sales of ‘cosmetics’ was nearly the same at 0.19%. Wellness, cosmetics and homecare are the biggest segments of direct selling sales in India and together constitute nearly 90% of the overall sales.
Overall, the gross direct selling sales for the H1 of FY21 (April-September) was estimated to have crossed the Rs 7,500-crore mark as compared to Rs 7,200 crore in the same period a year ago, registering 4.7% growth in the H1 of FY21, according to Indian Direct Selling Association (IDSA).
The northern states, including Delhi, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, contribute over 25% to total sales of the direct selling industry and nearly 15 lakh people are engaged in the direct selling business.
Also, during the same period, close to 53 lakh new entrants are estimated to have joined the industry as customers and direct sellers. The northern region added around 20-25% of the total new entrants.
According to the direct sellers, they have witnessed a tremendous upsurge in people exploring business opportunities, especially from the youth below 35 years of age. “What is even more heartening is the fact that the industry has witnessed a significantly higher number of new entrants, many of whom are going to pursue direct selling as a ‘full time’ or ‘part time’ opportunity,” said Rini Sanyal, chairperson, IDSA.
According to the sellers, the emergence of work-from- home concept has also helped the cause of the industry. People are becoming inclined to have an additional source of self-sustainable income while doing work from home and direct selling is emerging as a good source of an additional income. Also, adoption of virtual meeting technologies has enabled the companies and direct sellers to organise more meetings per day with prospective customers to expand their reach.