To the global and Brazilian retail icon, operations in Brazil are in better shape than European points of sale
The speed in which the Coronavirus spreads itself worldwide is the same speed in which we responded to the situation, so far. The speed in which we get information is also fast, and that is one of the main weapons the world’s population have to fight against the pandemic as well as the crisis caused by the Covid-19.
That is why, one of the main icons of Brazilian retail, Abilio Diniz, states that he is witnessing the worst crisis in his long career. “Today, we have around 2.5 billion people connected and receiving information from all sorts. I see the need for quickly adapting and adopting measures, even those no manager have ever imagined doing so, as controlling people access to the stores”, the President of the Administration Board of Península Participações, pointed out.
One of the main aspects related to the consumer behavior change is online shopping, and according to Mr. Diniz, Brazil is performing better than the worldwide average. “In relation to Europe, for instance, we are much better in terms of supermarket operation. We are meeting safety protocols, so that among our 85 thousand associates, we had very few cases of problems related to the Covid-19”, explained the board member of both Carrefour Brasil and Carrefour Global during the live streaming promoted by APAS.
According to the entrepreneur, after the social isolation period, everything should be the same as it was before, without many changes, particularly regarding to travels, friends gatherings, and people going out to bars and restaurants. “Everything people used to do, they will be doing again. In some cases, we have noticed the speeding of processes as the e-commerce, in which we already sell a lot, but is a tool that existed already. Just as working from home, that despite of being a trend before, should increase”, Abílio Diniz said.
Regarding consumer behavior, the domestic retail icon highlights the importance of not creating fantasies about the end of the pandemic. “As long as we do not have any vaccine or medication for treating the Covid-19, people should wear masks and avoid crowds. I love football, but I know that going to stadiums will take a while. Even when we relax restrictions, we will not have a normal life, and it will be long before we feel safe again”, Mr. Diniz affirmed.
New business dynamics
Abílio Diniz highlighted that in Brazil as well as the in rest of the world, people who are confined have little opportunities of spending money, and when everything returns to normal, they will naturally go shopping. “It is the same world, but under different circumstances. Business dynamics, today, is also different. Supermarket owners and managers should learn how to look at it”, says Abílio Diniz.
Considering that every crisis brings opportunities, Mr. Diniz shows that this is a good time for those who want to expand. “The current moment is ideal to look around and having the confidence, as our sector (retail) will remain strong. To those who are bolder, this is a good moment to negotiate buying or renting other stores. In the 2008 crisis we save money cutting all the expenses we could. In 2009, GPA doubled its size. Being reasonable and bold”, explained Mr. Diniz.