India has six distinct growth engines to drive economy: Harish Bhat

Our Bureau Chennai | Updated on October 12, 2019 Published on October 12, 2019

Harish Bhat, Brand Custodian, Tata Sons (file photo).   -  Bijoy Ghosh

“Each day you open the newspaper you will listen about falling growth but when you are an entrepreneur for a long time then don’t let this short term cyclical swings impact what you going to do for the long term," said Harish Bhat, Brand Custodian, Tata Sons.

Delivering an address titled ‘The India opportunity’ at the 12th edition of TiECON Chennai 2019 event here on Saturday, Bhat said India is a land of opportunity with not just one but six distinct growth engines that is powering the economy.

Six big trends

“The six big trends that are driving the growth of India are Affluent India, Young India, Boom Town India, Connected India, Health seeking India and Inclusive India,” Bhat said. Explaining Affluent India, Bhat said in 2005, 151 million (or 69 per cent) out of the total 219 million households were classified as low income, while 51 million people were classified as lower middle income households.

In 2018, he said the number of lower income household came down to 127 million while high and upper middle income households grew rapidly to about 70 million or 24 per cent of the total households of 293 million. “By 2030 we will have nearly 200 million households in high and upper middle income segment which means 1 in 2 households will be that group,” Bhat said adding that the entrepreneurs should think about how they are going to benefit from this huge opportunity.

Highlighting the benefits of ‘Young India’, Bhat said by 2028, 77 per cent of the Indian population will be millenials and Gen Z while 31 will be the median age of the population. “This means that 90 million new households are going to be created by that point of time who will consume houses and consumer durables. So we have a huge opportunity here, which I think we should keep our eyes on,” Bhat said.

Citing a Nielsen survey, he said, in addition to 9 metros, India has 31 ‘boomtowns’ with more than 1 million population, 5,000 urban towns and 50,000 developed rural towns. “Often, if you are bound to cities and large towns, somewhere you are going to lose out on the potential that the boomtown India offers,” Bhat added.

By 2030, Bhat said ‘Connected India’ will have 1.1 billion internet users with 90 per cent being mobile first consumers. Noting that 80 per cent of internet users are likely to transact in vernacular, he said only 6 per cent of people in India can speak in English out of which 12 per cent are in Urban while 3 per cent in rural India.

Urban population

“If you wish to connect with connected India then you must find a way to connect with the disconnected India,” Bhat said. Urging entrepreneurs to support the ‘health seeking India’, Bhat said 14 out of 20 polluted cities in the world are in India while 70 per cent of the country's urban population are obese or overweight. “63 per cent of all deaths in India attributed to lifestyle diseases.”

Bhat said ‘Inclusive India’ can be created by only by creating more jobs, focus on rural areas, empowerment of women, minimum damage to the environment and by providing rural India with access to all facilities enjoyed by the urban India. He urged the existing as well as aspiring entrepreneurs to seize at least any one of these distinct growth opportunities to grow their business.

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Published on October 12, 2019
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