Shruti Venkatesh

Staff Writer, The Ken

Based in Mumbai, Shruti covers ecommerce and internet for The Ken. In her previous stints with Forbes India and Outlook Business, she has also covered beats like FMCG, retail, stock market and advertising. When not chasing stories, she loves spending her time binge-watching, shopping and taking a leisurely stroll along the sea-facing promenade at Marine Drive.

5 Articles published

Top Comments by Shruti Venkatesh

Naturals, Lakmé, Urban Company, and the new salon normal

I disagree that there was a bias, as we bring forth the changes in services and strategy of all three players. To your first point of most orders being services like hair cut - well, in fact, Urban Company doesn't have hair cut service for women. It is just for men. And as they are asset light and they earn a commission on each service, their business model is well-suited for current times. To your second point on it being an unfair comparison, I think even if we had multiplied walk-ins into total store count, it would have been confusing. Hence, we chose to give store count and monthly walk-ins separately. But yes, thanks for your feedback. Will surely work on incorporating these nuances better in future charts and graphics.

Shruti Venkatesh

Naturals, Lakmé, Urban Company, and the new salon normal

Thanks Manjari. It is indeed the case that some will find it tougher than others to overcome the Covid wave. To your question on acquisition or shift of employees to Urban Company, I'm afraid I do not have much information on it. Primarily because the industry is highly unorganised, and the reporting on this story was limited to larger chains versus an online player like Urban Company. But it is surely an interesting point. Thanks for bringing it up.

Shruti Venkatesh

The FMCG aftershocks in a Reliance Retail-Future Group earthquake

Hi Hemendu, thank you so much for your feedback. To your first point, the statement was established after we referred to research reports from several brokerages, some of whom have been quoted in the story. The Jefferies report especially lays out the contribution of different channels quite well. To your second point, there are indeed several articles on how growth of private labels has dented sales for FMCG firms globally. In Europe, for instance, private brands even rank as category leaders in certain cases. 

Shruti Venkatesh

The FMCG aftershocks in a Reliance Retail-Future Group earthquake

Hi Thanmaya, you are absolutely right when you say that little has translated into action when it comes to JioMart. However, it does not rule out the fact that RIL is focussed on expanding this network. Also, customers are both brand conscious and price conscious, depending on the product category and its usage, as highlighted in the story. While private labels is an old strategy, the sheer scale post acquisition will allow Reliance Retail to push its products across a much larger network of stores than any of its peers. And yes, like you said, FMCG firms are likely to be working on retaining their hold on the unorganised sector.

Shruti Venkatesh

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