Bullish on growth prospects in India, FMCG major Nestle said it would strengthen its presence in diverse segments, including health and nutrition, and make further investments in the country.
“We are in this country for more than 100 years and we want to be there for another 100 years… So definitely in India we want to continue to invest because of the potential,” Nestle Head of South Asia Region, Etienne Benet, told reporters on the sidelines of the India Economic Summit.
There are enormous opportunities in India and it is definitely a country where the company can do better, he added.
The company, which sells brands like Maggi and Kit Kat in the country, remains optimistic about India’s long-term growth potential.
“We definitely see a great opportunity in India, I will say that we have not witnessed buoyancy so far in the market and yes there have been some good signals and in the near future we expect the market to show some positive signals,” he added.
Benet said the company expects the Indian economy to grow despite there being some hiccups in the Indian growth story.
“Also, I think consumer spending is going to grow,” Benet added.
When asked about the focus of the company in India, Benet said: “I think nutrition health and wellness area is our core target and our core driver for the future… people are getting more and more conscious of nutrition and they want to be healthier so definitely this is a big area of growth and potential for the businesses.”
The company’s ambition is to be recognised as a world leader in nutrition, health and wellness segments and this applies to all Nestle companies, he added.
The company expects the rules and regulations in the country to be positive for the industry in the way that it will incentivise to do better, Benet said.
Elaborating further, he said: “Well I would not comment specifically what we expect from the government but generally we as an industrial player expect that there should be better understanding between the different stakeholders.
“So the only point that we expect from the government is just to be a good driver, giving inspirational leadership to the country and listening to different voices.”
He added: “What we want as an industry is just the goodwill from authorities to listen when we have problems and to be enablers… we have extremely good connections with the rural sectors, with our partners, suppliers, clients.”
When asked about the effect of inflation on the company’s business, Benet said: “Inflation is always a concern… we are a company that is long-term oriented so I would not comment if one month inflation is high and another’s low… what we are saying is that we have to live with those elements.”