Consumer firms prepare for recovery this year, but challenges still remain

Photo from: The SM Store FB Page

By: Business World

Businesses are preparing for recovery this year on hopes of a further easing of lockdown restrictions and the rollout of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine, but restoring consumer confidence remains a challenge.

SM Supermalls President Steven Tan said 2021 is expected to be a “year of recovery” after the pandemic battered the retail industry last year.

“Malls are open again but consumer confidence is not yet 100% back to normal. Spending is muted. We are hoping 2021 would be a better year for everyone,” he said at the BusinessWorld Insights online forum on Wednesday.

[READ: Private sector hopes to rebuild consumer confidence amid pandemic]

“The first half would still slowly grow but the second half of the year, when the vaccine comes out, it will slowly go back to normal. We think we will be back to 2019 level by the last quarter of the year,” Mr. Tan said.

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