KPMG 2021 Consumer & Retail CEO Outlook Pulse Survey

Business leaders have managed to stabilize most of their operations and are looking ahead at new prospects for the future.

Matt Kramer

Matt Kramer

National Sector Leader, Consumer & Retail, KPMG LLP

+1 614-241-4666

With the recent introduction of vaccines and the hope for greater stability in many countries and industries, what is the outlook for the consumer and retail industry? What promising opportunities do CEOs see on the horizon for their organizations? Do they expect a return to normal?

The 2021 KPMG CEO Outlook Pulse Survey, conducted between February and March 2021, sought answers to these questions. By a large majority, CEOs have confidence in the longer-term growth prospects for consumer and retail businesses globally (92 percent) and their own companies specifically (90 percent). Yet more than one-third of the consumer and retail executives surveyed revealed that their companies have been changed forever. Many of those expecting to return to more normal operations do not anticipate doing so until 2022.

Health and safety are top of mind and essential elements in the recovery, with 93 percent of CEOs reporting that their employees will be asked to inform their employers when they complete their vaccinations.

When will your company return to a new normal course of business?


The pandemic's accelerator effect

Read our report for more insights from consumer and retail CEOs on:

  • customer-centric technologies
  • the digitization of operations
  • new workforce models
  • the power of purpose
  • appetite for mergers and acquisitions.
As optimism continues to build with many markets opening, Consumer & Retail CEOs continue to focus and invest in digital engagement and enabling channel flexibility in response to customer behaviours. Going forward the top down focus will lean heavily towards the stability and efficiency of the supply chain, integrating successful pandemic pivots permanently into business models, and ensuring ESG strategies become realities.
Matt Kramer, National Sector Leader, Consumer & Retail