BW HOTELIER Webinar, Moderated by Vir Sanghvi, Raises Important Industry Issues

Moderated by Vir Sanghvi, eminent print and TV journalist, columnist and talk show host, the BW HOTELIER webinar on May 22 saw the captains from the Indian hospitality industry discuss, debate and advice on the possible way forward for the sector that has been adversely impacted by Covid-19 pandemic.

In the unprecedented situation created by the Covid-19 pandemic, the country’s economy is hit hard, multiple sectors are feeling the brunt of the lockdown. More so for the hospitality industry in the country that has been at a stand-still since the lockdown, starting March 25. The industry that employs 7.3 million people (NRAI figures) and is the second-largest employer of human capital after agriculture should be in the centre for kick-starting the economy post-pandemic crisis.  

BW HOTELIER hosted a Webinar on 'Getting Indian Hospitality Back... Hear The Leaders'. The live streamed Webinar was anchored by eminent print and television journalist, author, columnist and talk show host Vir Sanghvi. 

The Webinar saw an elite, never seen before panel of key industry stalwarts together on one platform. 

The panel chaired by Vir Sanghvi consisted of Nakul Anand, Executive Director of ITC Limited and Chairman, FAITH; Patu Keswani, Chairman and Managing Director of Lemon Tree Hotels; Vikram Oberoi, CEO, The Oberoi Group; Neeraj Govil, Senior Vice President - South Asia of Marriott International;  K.B. Kachru, Chairman Emeritus and Principal Advisor - South Asia of Radisson Hotel Group; Sunjae Sharma, Country Head and Vice President – India Operations of Hyatt Hotels & Resorts; Dr Jyotsna Suri, Chairperson and Managing Director of Bharat Hotels Ltd (The Lalit); and Priya Paul, Chairperson of Apeejay Surrendra Park Hotels.

Sanghvi, steered the conversation through the problems faced by the hospitality industry such as the impact of social distancing norms on the hospitality sector. Saghvi asked his panelists on the possibilities of availability of vaccination and how soon could the industry expects to see a turnaround? 

He raised the question of why there was a lack of government assistance to the sector in the recently announced economic stimulus packages for various sectors. And it triggered an honest response from one of the industry captains. “If our hospitality industry goes down, so many other industries will also go down,” said K. B. Kachru, an industry veteran.

Since the hotels and restaurants are shut, what would the impact on the jobs associated with this sector, he asked his fellow panelists and got some interesting response. “Despite our industry losing almost Rs 10 lakh crore, we have not got help (from the central government). It is an issue we need to talk about. We really want to know whether the government cares,” asked Kachru, Chairman Emeritus and Principal Advisor - South Asia of Radisson Hotel Group.

Sanghvi also raised the critical question of demand and supply development, demographic with younger people who power the demand and the industry, and sustainability as a keyword for the industry among others. And he did bring upon multiple occasions the pertinent question that is on the mind of one and all—whether social distancing is here to stay or the industry will come back to normal in a couple of years?

Do go to the social media pages of BW Hotelier to watch a truly engaging and meaningful discussion between Sanghvi and the industry captains. The webinar organised by BWHotelier garnered 11000 plus views on facebook and maxed out on zoom platform.


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