Sri Lanka’s emerging middle class spend more on convenience

Standing left to right – Mr. Dinesh Jebamani (Chief Manager Liability Product Management and New Age Media – Seylan Bank), Mr.Sudesh Peiris (Senior Manager – Digital Banking Channels – Seylan Bank), Ms. S.Senevirathne (Representative of the Revenue Department – Western Province), Mr. Tilan Wijeyesekera (Deputy General Manager – Retail Banking – Seylan Bank) and Mr. Malik Wickremanayaka (Deputy General Manager – Operations – Seylan Bank)

Oct 16, 2008 (LBO) – Changing Sri Lankan middle class consumer habits and inflation reducing spending power is forcing consumer goods marketers to change strategies to keep growth ticking.

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Emerging middle class consumers are showing a growing preference for easy to prepare food and home cleaning products, according to market research firm Nielsen.

However, demand for widely used products like soap, soft drinks and margarine is falling because inflation is eating in to the disposable incomes of poorer consumers.

Inflation is having an impact. We can see that consumers are cutting spending on basic items. As a result they maybe spending a little bit more on food and drink today and leaving less money for other items, says Shaheen Cader from market research firm Nielsen.

The company has just completed a survey covering 3000 retail outlets – excluding supermarkets – tracking consumer trends.

Inflation bite

Roaring inflation caused by profligate government spending has put the brakes on discretionary spending.

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