The pandemic has posed new challenges for most but has also brought new opportunities for some. For Suparna Mitra, it brought both. While the country was grappling with the first round of stringent lockdowns in early 2020, the responsibility of managing the Rs 4,000-crore Titan Company's watches and wearables division landed on her shoulders. It was both an opportunity and a challenge. Mitra, who is a sales and marketing veteran with close to 30 years of experience, faced the challenge head on, a situation she prefers. "You get stressed not when events are happening, but the outcome is outside your control," she says.
The past 20 months have been difficult for her and the business. Sales have only begun to recover in the second half of 2021. But the learnings that she and her team have gathered have given the business a new direction. Under her leadership, the division has rapidly adopted and implemented the omni-channel strategy that has become indispensable in the post-Covid-19 world. From only a few dozen stores in early 2020, now all its outlets are omni-enabled, which boosted its online sales to 17 per cent of the total.
Further, the local consumers' growing affinity towards premium products is now being taken into account more seriously. While the company already has global brands like Tommy Hilfiger under its fold, she is now overseeing the transformation of its outlets that are expected to present more premium offerings to watch and wearable lovers in India.
Mitra, who is a big fan of Satyajit Ray movies, is a believer in his vision of social freedom and equality that continues to stay relevant even in the 21st century. And much like Ray's Charulata, a movie that fascinates Mitra, she visualises a society where women are not frowned upon for their aspirations. For now, though, she is busy getting the business ready for the next set of disruptions.
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