After years of being subdued by the pandemic and subsequent lockdowns and economic pressures, the big fat Indian weddings are set to return this year with a thud. India’s wedding industry is expected to see a growth at the rate of a whopping 200 per cent this year, in terms of an overall market outlook, according to a report quoting Vikaas Gutgutia, founder and managing director of Ferns N Petals Pvt. Ltd. The company claimed that the rate of bookings for the upcoming wedding season has almost returned to the 2019 levels, before the pandemic.
Ferns N Petals, that owns and operates Fnp Weddings & Events India as well as 11 large wedding venues in and around Delhi NCR, expects to grow 100 per cent this year. The company is backed by Lighthouse India Fund III that invested Rs 200 crore in the firm in March this year.
“Popular venues are already chock-a-block for the upcoming season and the upper middle class is still choosing offbeat venues. While destination weddings still remain the preferred pick for HNIs, our venues and weddings business will see more than a 100 per cent growth this year,” Gutgutia was quoted as saying by Livemint.
Even though the wedding market is largely an unorganised sector, a 2016 KPMG report titled Market Study of Online Matrimony and Marriage Services in India estimated that the Indian wedding industry is worth about Rs 3.68 trillion.
“The costs have shot through the roof post-covid owing to increased vendor input costs. But since there are multiple vendors available in each category, it does allow wedding makers to choose and negotiate for deals,” he added.
Rising vendor cost is emerging as an issue as other companies have also addressed the matter. WeddingWire India in a survey conducted last month, the earnings of nearly half of its vendors per month have gone up in 2022 as compared to 2019. The survey also found out the 31 per cent of its vendors hiked their charges due to high product and labour costs across categories.
The wedding season is set to kick in within a few months, after Diwali. The time between November and February sees peak wedding activities.
“Typically, weddings are held on certain auspicious days across the year but the trend is gradually shifting because of both convenience and costs. A wedding held on an auspicious date will cost people almost two times because there is a huge demand for venues, décor and other services. The same wedding can be executed at half the cost if one chooses to overlook ‘auspicious’ dates. Hotels and caterers, too, will inevitably offer discounted rates,“ Gutgutia said.