Time to work ‘together’
Anil Malhotra, President, HOTREMAI, says that hotels can achieve stability by helping suppliers dependent on them
TO SAFEGUARD and represent the interests of its members in particular and of the industry in general by taking up various issues adversely affecting their business with government bodies, hotels, restaurants as also the associations, Hotel and Restaurant Equipment Manufacturers Association of India (HOTREMAI) was established in 1982 and formally registered under the Societies Registration Act, 1860 in 1994. Today, it is the leading association of renowned hotel and restaurant equipment manufacturers, suppliers, service providers and consultant companies.
HOTREMAI also strives for standardisation of equipment/ product/ services to hotels, restaurants and allied establishments. It also publishes newsletters and literature for the benefit of the members of the Association as well as hotels, restaurants and allied establishments in India and abroad. The aim is to establish, sponsor or collaborate with other agencies, organisations, institutions or services in fulfilment of any or all the above objectives. The Association keeps its members informed about different expositions related to the hotels and restaurant equipment globally. “HOTREMAI organises in-house meets for purchase managers, hotel consultants, F&B managers and other events where representatives of the hospitality industry interact with its members, know their products and services, discuss problems and make collective efforts for effective solutions besides establishing mutual understanding and workout fruitful business deals,” says Anil Malhotra, President, HOTREMAI. He adds that the Association facilitates special discounted rates for participating in business exhibitions, fairs, shows and events organised by the Government and non-government trade and industry promotion bodies for its members.
Please let us know more about the challenges the industry faced during the period of the pandemic.
The last two years have wiped off more of newcomers like those smaller plants or slightly older saplings which could not bear the tsunami wave like the pandemic. Even bigger and stronger trees like established organisations wilted under the pandemic pressure and their roots got severely affected. The payment procedures worsened too. This is the time to work together by the hotels to support their associates in whatever ways they can. At present, the clear-cut terms are ‘Cash & Carry’! Only a few chains are the privileged ones getting credit from the manufacturers. If the hotels pay 100 per cent advance to the foreign suppliers and wait another eight-10 weeks for the supplies, why this step-motherly treatment towards the national suppliers?
With the easing of Covid19 restrictions, the hospitality industry is in its recovery mode. Will you please share your plans for the year ahead and after?
Recovery mode is being connected with the current ongoing projects getting revived. However, the hotels’ purchasing and finance departments are still accepting the recovery word sheepishly. With energy costs going up both for users as well as suppliers, the credit flow has to be maintained for an uninterrupted supply of materials to the former. This is a precarious situation and needs to be balanced out. For hotels to keep cash flow reach pre-pandemic levels to maintain stability is by helping the ailing supplier who is more dependent on them.
Not just as a reputed vendor to the industry but as the President, HOTREMAI, what initiatives did you undertake for a strong comeback of your member partners?
HOTREMAI is an associate member at ASSOCHAM, FICCI & PHD Chamber of Commerce. We are also actively taking part in the new Policy Announcement for Export Promotions which are, in turn, made clear to us in toto through such independent commercial bodies I mentioned above. We represented our case to the Government through these bodies in the proximity of requests sent by the hotel bodies to the Government. I regret to say a hotel which is in itself bringing in such a big chunk of Foreign Exchange earnings for the Indian GDP was given a treatment we all are aware of. Unfortunately, our requests to the Government have not been successful.
When will the industry hit the purple patch that will help it regain pre-pandemic levels of stability, income and more importantly, days of glory and growth?
We shall hit the purple patch with the help of hotels and not because the fourth wave not hitting India. This precarious balance due to current high energy costs, metals bearing the brunt in the international/ domestic markets has to be equally borne by the hotels and hotel suppliers. There is no third party like the Government to help this balance as we have seen in the past.
This article was published in BW hotelier issue dated '' with cover story titled 'MARCH-APRIL 2022 F&B SPECIAL'
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