by Samad Miraly
The Boston Consulting Group is one of the world’s top management consulting firms and the world’s leading advisor on business strategy. And it has just completed a report on Bangladesh.
On Thursday, 22 October 2015 in partnership with SD Asia, BCG will unveil its report at an exclusive launch event at the Gardenia Grand Hall. And when BCG talks, people listen. That’s one of the reasons this event’s attendees is made up of many of Bangladesh’s top industrialists and personalities. Another is that when BCG says it’s excited about a market, businesspeople should think about getting excited.
The report, titled Bangladesh: The Surging Consumer Market Nobody Saw Coming, presents the culmination of insights the firm has compiled from its research and work here. And it is truly fascinating.
I can’t tell you exactly how fascinating without getting in trouble for giving away BCG’s valuable insight for free, but the analysis of its authors Zarif Munir (Managing Director & Partner, Malaysia), Olivier Muehlstein (Managing Director & Partner,Singapore) and Vivek Nauhbar (Consultant, Singapore) tell us that Bangladesh is ready for the world’s companies to get going in Bangladesh. Actually, not just ready, but actually missing out if they’re not gearing up to be present here. It also identifies how and where to concentrate efforts for both local and global players to excel.
So, why is all this a big deal? BCG has never done a report on Bangladesh before. It has, however, had clients and done work in Bangladesh. But it hasn’t ever launched a report. So, why now?
Well, probably because they feel, like I do, that Bangladesh is ready to move up in the world. That it is an exciting market, growing steadily and rapidly, with a demographic primed to pay dividends. That it has acceptable government debt, rising wages, a low median population age, solid industries and many other indicators that people bullish on Bangladesh can throw at you. That it’s time for companies—local and international—that are big, looking to grow, and looking to make some money, to start looking at Bangladesh.
With contribution by LightCastle Partners, BCG surveyed around 2,000 households, gaining exceptional insight into the spending habits, behaviour, aspirations, wants, needs, desires of the Bangladeshi consumer. This unique approach speaks to the spending mindset of the middle and affluent class instead of simply spouting off the usual actual expenditure numbers. They’ve taken all this information and combined it with their typical analytical prowess and international experience to draw out the future of the Bangladesh opportunity. And it has concluded that the future is bright.
The BCG report surveys the Bangladeshi consumer landscape and navigates a path to a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. By doing this, it gives validation to those of us working here and shouts out a clear message to the world: Bangladesh is an opportunity that should not be missed. And, coming from a firm like BCG, that’s a big deal.
Full Disclosure: The author is a co-founder of SD Asia and an investor in LightCastle Partners.