New Delhi: Eighty-two per cent of Indian companies expect to get back to pre-coronavirus revenue run rate by June 2021, according to a report by PwC India. The report is based on a survey of 225 CXOs across industries to assess the impact of the Covid-19 crisis. PwC conducted an anonymous online survey between June 17, 2020 and July 10, 2020, it said adding that the survey respondents were a mix of CXOs and other senior management personnel from various industries in India. The report suggests that infrastructure, real estate, industrials, retail, hospitality and media and entertainment suffered significant revenue decline due to the crisis, as per the report titled ‘COVID-19: Path to Recovery’.
Collapse in demand, supply-chain disruptions and liquidity constraints were the top reasons for the decline, it said. “Sectors such as information technology, healthcare, pharma, telecom, utilities and consumer essentials were somewhat resilient. Crisis management and agility to adapt to the changing market were the key for resilience,” it said. According to the report, 73 per cent respondents are expecting lower revenues in 2020-21, but only 15 per cent expect the decline extending to the next fiscal. Further, an overwhelming 77 per cent of the respondents would like to accelerate digital enablement, it said.
Other significant interventions anticipated by the respondents include localisation of manufacturing/ supply chains, development of newer logistics models, collaboration to add capabilities and navigate bottlenecks and development of newer products and services. “Forty-five per cent of the respondents are keen to consider acquisitions, whereas 20 per cent are considering divesting non-core businesses. Twenty-six per cent of the respondents would be looking to raise funds,” said the report.
Sanjeev Krishan, partner and leader (deals) at PwC India, said business leaders have adapted well to this unprecedented situation and are optimistic of recovery. “We noticed a pragmatic progression in the steps taken by CXOs from ‘repair’ to ‘rethink’ to ‘reconfigure’ in future. In this tougher business environment, digital enablement has become key for remaining competitive and resilient,” he said. He further said value creation has become even more critical and deal-making is going to be an important lever.
The crisis has brought resilience to the fore and we expect boardrooms to take due cognisance of it, he added. The priorities for most respondent organisations have evolved from survival initiatives like employee well-being and availability and business continuity during the lockdown to rebound initiatives like recapturing demand and optimising costs after the unlock, the report said. It further said that while debt moratoriums have helped industries, liquidity continues to be a major concern.
“Fifty-eight per cent of the respondents expect a tougher business environment in the near term for reasons including greater competition, higher costs, increased price sensitivity of customers, funding challenges, and changing regulations,” it said. CXOs were also asked about their definition of success out of Covid-19. Thirty-four per cent would like their organisation to be more resilient, followed by 19 per cent who wanted to gain and protect market share and 19 per cent who wanted to achieve break even cash flows, it said.