The Adverse Effect of Coronavirus (nCovid) in Businesses and How They Will Rein The Situation

2 April 2020
#NBFC #Retail #Healthcare #Hospitality

Coronavirus (nCovid) is one of the trending and quotidian topics these days because this deadly virus has claimed more than 33,000 lives all over the world and has infiltrated almost 202 countries. After evaluating its outbreak and tragedies, on March 12, WHO (World Health Organization) has declared this as pandemic and is spreading awareness so that every nation can come together to combat this lethal virus. This virus has not only claimed a chunk of lives but also made a great impact on the global economy. Almost all public and private sectors are forced to shut down in order to slow down the pace of the infections and illness. This virus has affected every business sector, but in this article, we are going to mention those sectors which have affected it the most.

Retail sector:

ever since the panic broke out, many retail shops and malls all over the world have witnessed a huge drop in their footfalls and revenues. As per the Retailers Association of India, by the end of February, the business had dropped nearly 20-25 per cent. Near about 15 lakh modern retail stores are only in India which generate Rs 4.74 lakh crore worth business every year. Almost 60 lakh people are associated with these stores for their bread and butter. Now, due to lock down all the shops are closed and these people have become jobless. Though most of the companies have granted paid leaves for 1-2 months for their employees, still the situation will become miserable if the lockdown continues till May. The stores which are selling essential items are only allowed to open during this lockdown period, but they are also losing profit as they can’t sell other general merchandise. Coronavirus has also disrupted the supply chains, as a result, online retailers like Amazon, Flipkart, etc. are struggling to bring goods into the country. Most of the online stores have suspended their services temporarily making thousands of people jobless.

Banks and NBFCs:

Banking sector is another sector which has affected hugely due to the coronavirus outbreak. Reserve Bank governor Mr Shaktikanta Das has quoted that banks and NBFCs have prepared themselves for the upcoming challenges due to the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. A potential drop in bank visits has witnessed as the government has banned public gathering in any place. Moreover, banks have also reduced their operational hours or temporarily closed their branches to combat the coronavirus outcome. As the market is rolling down, most of the banks and NBFCs have lost almost 30-40% value in the last month. The revenue has also got down because of fewer transactions, loan repayments, etc. The Reserve bank of India has also reduced the repo rate to 4 per cent. The finance minister of India said, “All commercial, regional, rural, NBFCs and small finance banks are being permitted to allow a 3-month moratorium on payment of instalments in respect of all term loan EMIs outstanding on March 31”. EMIs will resume once the moratorium period gets over. This is a huge relief for all EMI payers. Moreover, there will be no charge on ATM transactions on any bank and no minimum balance is required. Since customers are not coming physically to the banks, hence, banks are encouraging them to use the online payment method for their transaction. But for this, all banks should simplify their online operations so that customers can make their transactions in a hassle-free way.


Healthcare:

coronavirus is shaking up healthcare businesses on a massive scale. Most of the hospitals and clinics are not allowing patients to come physically for their regular check-ups. But they are providing teleconsultation and video consultations with the healthcare experts so that the patients will get continuous assistance for their diseases. The hospitals and clinics are implementing remote patient monitoring (RPM) systems to monitor the conditions of their patients. Since coronavirus originated in China (Wuhan), hence the medical device industry is facing a huge loss because India is highly dependent on China for purchasing raw materials and electronic components. Many manufacturing companies have claimed that there is a huge gap between the demand and supply of products such as masks and sanitizers. Over the past few months, this shortage has started impacting the margins and profitability of Indian companies who used to import medical devices and small components. This time many pharmaceutical companies are trying to make partnerships with biotech companies so that they can invent coronavirus vaccines and drugs to combat this lethal disease.

Hospitality and tourism:

Due to the cascading effect of coronavirus outbreak, the Indian hospitality industry will lose up to 620 crores. Hotelivate, a hospitality consultancy firm has claimed that “Unfortunately, business for the second half of March seems to have dropped off a cliff, pretty much across the board”. Like all other governments, the Indian government has suspected visas, domestic and international flight operations till April 15, 2020. Moreover, the government has requested people to stay at home, this can lead to a huge loss to the hotels and other accommodation providers. A plethora of statistics has claimed that the chain and standalone hotel segment is staring at losses over ₹130-155 crore, whereas the alternate accommodation segment may lose up to ₹420-470 crore. Adding to these facts, it is also found that nearly 15-25 per cent of the employees of the various eminent hotel chains in India are either contracted or casual staff. If this situation persists for long, then they may lose their job.

Apart from the above-mentioned industries, there are also other industries like IT, telecom, aviation, FMCG, etc. are facing a chunk of losses due to coronavirus outbreak.

How can businesses combat the situation?

To overcome the situation, businesses should provide work from home options to their employees so that they can stay healthy and robust. For those who can’t provide work from home, must stop their operations till the situation gets better. Every company should spread the awareness and personal hygiene campaign to its employees to prevent this outbreak. During this tough time, all companies should try to boost up the mental health of their employees by sending some motivational messages or emails. The companies should provide financial and healthcare assistance to their employees and should not cut salary or leaves to make their employees motivated and content. Every company should try to use their CSR fund to support all the needy and underprivileged people who are unable to arrange food and other basic needs for them.

Coronavirus has reached a critical phase; the prime aim is to contain and mitigate the disease itself. But the economic impacts are also significant, and many companies are feeling their way towards understanding, reacting to, and learning lessons from rapidly unfolding events. During this time, companies should engage their employees in study and research so that they can come out with a solid plan regarding how they can survive after this pandemic. Every company should motivate their employees to spend some time on various social media channels and forums to acquire knowledge about coronavirus and its effect on the businesses. Because businesses who plan earlier will only be able to survive once the pandemic will get over.

This is indubitably a tough and precarious situation for every nation of the world. Rather considering their profits and revenues, every company should give priority to humanity. They must provide every assistance to their employees and other needy people to combat the deadly effect of coronavirus.

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