Don't wait, create opportunities

Amitabh Vardhan, Chief Executive, PVR Cinemas, shares his experiences and knowledge in an interview to the Retailer


Retailer: What kind of challenges did you face initially?

 (AV): ‘Opportunity makes desire.’, goes an old adage. In my case, there was paucity of opportunity resulting into a greater hunger to achieve and succeed. Nevertheless, dearth of opportunity was only an initial stumbling block for I learnt that one has to create opportunity and not wait for it to come knocking on the door. What used to be instrumental for me then and now was my penchant for reading and following the works of inspirational leaders like Jack Welsh, Warren Buffet and Henry Ford.


Retailer: What have you remarked already in the retail sector?

(AV): What remains absolutely exhilarating is that every day is a new day in the retail sector. Driven by changing lifestyles, strong income growth and favourable demographic patterns, Indian retail is expanding at a rapid pace and this makes the sector dynamic and challenging as well. Today, the discerning Indian consumer is demanding nothing less than the best. He is consistently on the lookout for new experiences through new and exciting products and services.


Retailer: How has the retail sector evolved?

(AV): AT Kearney recently rated India as the most attractive retail destination in the world for three years continuously. Thus, it is for all to see that Indian retail is certainly on an upswing.  Needless to say, the rate at which the Indian market has been growing will certainly ensure that in the next three years, we will carve out an enviable position for ourselves on the global landscape.


Retailer: How do you perceive the future of Indian retail industry?

(AV): The future prospects for this industry are extremely positive. My perception is that we will slowly move into consolidation mode, which will involve a whole lot of forward and backward integration. The hype and hoopla centered around retail in the metros will then gradually shift focus to smaller B and C towns creating opportunities for all.


Retailer: What is your advice to aspiring retail professionals?

(AV): I will only advise them to focus on the smallest and most intricate of details as I strongly believe that God lies in details! One can rarely go wrong if this mantra of specific detailing is followed. The consumer is king and it is imperative that we focus on consumer behaviour and service. And, of course, innovative thinking and ability to make free of stereotypes will assist one is creating a definite identity.


Retailer: What is your educational and professional background?

Amitabh Vardhan(AV): I graduated in Hotel Management and topped it up with an MBA. Then, I did a diploma course in Training and Development. I have had stints with companies like Welcom Group, Pizza Corner, Domino's and HLL. All of these engagements gave me some invaluable exposure and experience.

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