New Delhi: Digitisation has become a significant focus for MSMEs (Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises), as highlighted in a report by FIRST. The report reveals that 72.5 percent of retailers are open to embracing digital tools to enhance their store offerings, while 53 percent are already utilising these tools to improve collaboration across departments.
Recognising the potential benefits of digitisation, the Forum for Internet Retailers, Sellers & Traders, India (FIRST India) organised a workshop in Chennai titled ‘Future Proofing of Indian Enterprises.’ The workshop aimed to create awareness among small businesses about the opportunities that going digital can offer, ultimately leading to self-reliance. Various participants attended the event, including Kanimozhi Karunanidhi, an MP, representatives from industry bodies like the Chennai Jewellers’ Association, Tamil Nadu Small and Tiny Industries Association, Federation of All India Vyapar Mandal, as well as industry players such as Amazon Pay, Tata AIA, and Movin.
Chennai, known for its thriving retail sector and innovative practices, has emerged as a hub for omnichannel retail. The city’s retail landscape successfully combines physical and digital experiences, exemplifying the immense potential of digitisation for retailers. The FIRST report also highlights that 72.5 percent of retailers in Chennai are highly receptive to adopting digital tools to enhance their store offerings, with 53 percent already utilising them to foster collaboration across different departments.
During the event, Kanimozhi Karunanidhi expressed the state government’s support for the transformative journey of MSMEs, affirming their commitment to seamlessly integrate traditional retail with the power of e-commerce. The state government has made substantial investments, surpassing Rs 900 crore so far, as a testament to their dedication to the sector’s growth. Recognising the crucial role played by Tamil Nadu’s vibrant MSME ecosystem in generating employment opportunities for over 1 crore individuals and contributing significantly to the state’s economy, Karunanidhi emphasised the need to promote the adoption of hybrid retail models. Such models strategically leverage the abundant opportunities presented by e-commerce.
Vinod Kumar, president of the India SME Forum and trustee & president of FIRST India, conveyed the mission of empowering MSMEs in Chennai. The organisation aims to achieve this by fostering digital literacy and equipping businesses with the necessary tools to tap into the lucrative $7 billion e-commerce market.
In conclusion, the increasing acceptance and adoption of digital tools among MSMEs, as demonstrated by the statistics from the FIRST report, signify the growing importance of digitisation for retailers. The digitisation workshop in Chennai, supported by various stakeholders, highlighted the opportunities available to small businesses and the government’s commitment to their success. By embracing digital tools and hybrid retail models, MSMEs can unlock their full potential and thrive in the digital era.