Guwahati: Sporting events come to a complete halt in the past few months due to the pandemic. Many stadiums across the country have been converted into COVID centres. Businesses large and small dealing with equipment, trophies and sportswear took a big hit. With social distancing in place, the only sport that saw tremendous growth was cycling.
Sports shops in Guwahati city are not different. Agin Kumar of Bombay Sports, a leading sports apparel store in the Ulubari says their business has gone down significantly. Although they have not reduced the salaries of their employees, they had to layoff people.
“If we had sales of around Rs 10,000-15,000, now we have sales of around Rs 3000-4000, we even had to reduce our staff because of that”, says Agin Kumar.
Agin Kumar is hopeful that once the season resumes their sales will pick up. He has stocked up in the hope of seeing a COVID-19 vaccine soon.
Ashish Maggu of Sports Galaxy, who sells sports equipment and trophies believes their sales will only pick up once stadiums open.
“Footfall has decreased, sales have gone down significantly. We used to sell at least 100 trophies, cricket bats, etc. Today we are selling just 10 a day. The sports industry is not in good condition. We have not been able to clear the old stocks yet and therefore this we are not planning to purchase any new stock”, says Ashish.
Ravi Tandon of Silver Sports says, “We are down by 30-40 percent in business, although we have purchased new stock, it is a very small quantity,” says Ravi. He even said that the price of imported goods have sky rocketed, however to their relief the Indian companies have kept their prices under check.
With sporting activity slowly resuming across the city, business owners are hopeful of improving their sales and recovering their losses in the next few months.