Direct selling industry’s growth declines 5.3 pc to ₹ 19,020 cr in FY22

The Indian direct selling industry’s growth has declined 5.3 per cent to Rs 19,020 crore in FY22, impacted by a devastating second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a report. Nearly 60 per cent of the direct selling companies reported negative growth due to multiple challenges faced by them during the pandemic, said an Annual Survey Report released by the industry body Indian Direct Selling Association (IDSA). The direct selling industry stood at Rs 18,067 crore in the FY 2021, reporting a 7.7 per cent growth. ‘The industry is correcting itself from the COVID period and returning to pre-COVID times,” it said. IDSA believes that India has a ”vast untapped market potential” for the industry and the rising middle class, estimated to comprise more than 25 crore, ”has higher disposable income and is more receptive to purchasing premium products”. Now, technology-driven offerings, especially in the wellness and personal care space, have been witnessing great traction among consumers. In FY22, the industry has also added more numbers of direct sellers, taking the total count to around 84 lakhs — registering a growth of 6 per cent from 79 lakh over the previous year, the report said. According to IDSA, there has been a steady growth in the number of Active Direct Sellers in India over the last four years. However, it also said that there is a change in direct seller’s profiles as the person who had engaged with direct selling companies during the pandemic period for additional income have started focusing on their core job and the focus on direct selling seems to have reduced. ”As per the survey, we have noticed a reduction in direct sellers considering direct selling as part of their extra income from 41 per cent in FY21 to 21 per cent in FY22,” it said. Moreover, products like sanitisers, masks and other hygiene, and sanitising products saw a degrowth post-pandemic. Companies handling these products have taken a hit in