While over a decade ago, Diwali meant the time for annual pay bonus for many employees and a box of sweets and dry fruits for all employees and business associates, in recent years companies have become more creative in their way of showing appreciation toward their stakeholders. There has been a clear shift from traditional gifts to customised gifts (as well as their innovative packaging) in the corporate gifting segment. And this increasing demand for unique gifts by the corporate world has helped establish gifting as a booming business stream in itself over the years.
Every festive season, the corporate world witnesses a remarkable increase in the number of innovative gifting solutions providers than the previous year. The corporate gifting industry is growing at a whopping pace of 200 per cent annually, as per a 2017 report by Technopak – a management consulting firm. The report also stated that the market size of personal and corporate gifting is around INR 2.5 crore, of which the corporate sector alone contributes an approximate amount of INR 12,000 crore.
founderINDIA connected with different players in the space to understand the needs of corporates and where the trend of corporate gifting is headed other than including personal gifting solutions in their portfolio.
Gifting something new under the sun
“We came with our website, corporategifts.in, six to seven years back. This venture became so interesting for us that we launched our own brand called Xech, this year in January. Xech is all about gadgets, and all our corporate gifts have artificial intelligence built in the products,” said Mahendra Hemdev, director and cofounder of the Mumbai-based company whose portfolio boasts of innovative products like voice assisted wireless speakers, headphones, smart watches, alarm clock with sunrise and sunlight simulation light and bluetooth connectivity to add preferred alarm sounds, waterproof trekking backpack with in-built bluetooth speaker, power banks, and many more such products.
“There is innovation in the technology sector every year. Table top gifts like mugs, desk accessories and basic t-shirts are all outdated. People prefer new every time and so, we provide them with futuristic products.”
We all know that innovation is an everyday affair in the gadget industry. But so is the case with eateries too. And even gifting sweets is a seriously creative affair today. As long as 20 years ago, Dadu’s Sweet Emporio entered the corporate gifting segment with its delectable sweets.
Rusheel Dadu, the managing partner of the family-run business, shared his thoughts on the current trend in the sector. “Earlier, people were not aware of what they wanted to gift. Now they know exactly what they want.
We have dry fruit bites made of different flavours like chocolate, toffee, blueberry, ginger, lemon, coffee, and many others. We also have dry fruit chikki made of dried flowers like cranberry chikki. Fusion dessert items are in demand as they have a longer shelf life and also very new for people to taste. Beautiful packaging is an important element too. The customised sweet boxes with the company name and logo on it bring in the required personal touch alongside taking care of the company’s branding needs.”
Along with the old ventures, the new entrants in the corporate gifting world are also excited about the new trends in the industry. One of them is Khalis Organics which is a cafe and organic food store in Delhi. The company’s motto is to keep the environment safe and people healthy. All its products are organic in nature, as claimed by Brahmdeep Singh, co-owner of the two-year-old company. Khalis Organics ventured into corporate gifting this year and currently caters to several startups and small companies.
While explaining why they are approaching the corporates with their products, Brahmdeep said, “We deal in organic food and it is different from what people generally gift. To stand apart in the organic food industry, we got into corporate gifting. Also, we use bio-degradable material and glass for packaging. There is no use of plastic. Companies always look for new and different products. Organic gifts show that they care about their employees. Also, in bigger companies, they see it as their corporate liability to take care of the environment. Our products appeal in that way too.”
Change is constant in the common gifting segment like home décor and furniture too.
Zaga, an interior concept store in Pune that was launched in January this year, provides unique artifacts, home décor items, cutleries, and tastefully-done furniture. Tirtha Misal, co-owner of the store, told that all these products were made by local and international artisans and designers. She further added, “There is always a demand for gifts in the corporate sector. Our products like aroma candles available in unusual designs, stainless steel coffee mugs, dining set, table mats, batik coasters, table runners, paintings, cement products like handmade wall hangings, and terrazzo candle holder are loved by our clients. So, we thought of offering them as corporate gift packages too.”
Spoilt with choices
With the umpteen options available today, the customer is surely spoilt for choice. It is, hence, pertinent today to choose something innovative and personal at the same time. Thus, many gifting companies like Archies, Ferns N Petals, Hallmark, and other brands in the league, have diversified their range of products. Brands like Happily Unmarried and Chumbak offer a refreshing approach with their quirky gift range.
With this series, we will be tracking such trends and connecting with many more creative players that are constantly bringing newness to the space of corporate gifting.