COVID- 19 will fuel the next wave of innovation. Economic recessions and pandemics change the trajectory of governments, economies and businesses. As mentioned in our previous article, we spoke about some businesses and industries prospered during a crisis. If past pandemics and crises are any indication, this contagion, just like all the others, will spark a wave of innovation.

Now is the time for individuals and organizations to capitalize on underlying changes and disruptions associated with the pandemic by providing creative and innovative solutions to new and emerging industries. COVID-19 has changed the way businesses will compete over the next decade. In this article, we analyzed industries that will see a spike in businesses now, and change the playing field of the future after.

Embracing Technological Investments.

1. Heathcare Technologies

Last week, we spoke about how ALIBABA prospered through the crisis of SARS in 2002. During this crisis, they have emerged again by developing an AI system capable of detecting COVID-19 in a computerized tomography scan of patient’s chest withing 20 seconds with an accuracy of at least 96%. This is because ALIBABA knew that now is the time to embrace technological investments and ventured into healthcare technologies. Many others have since embarked on this innovative solutions and entered these emerging industries.

Being able to consult with a doctor online has proven to be an effective and convenient method to allow patients to stay at home and avoid catching the disease. In addition, smartphone apps is another innovative tool used to help citizens battle COVID-19. Apps are being built to alert users if they are in the vicinity of a “high-risk” location together with collecting data of infected patients and tracing their location to ensure they are abiding by the stay home notice.

That being said, many businesses and market players have an opportunity to respond to this new need for online/technological health care solutions which may drive greater innovation and investment in this area.

2. E-commerce

There has been a change in consumer behaviors. We can see a major consumer shift in online shopping increasing because of its convenience and ease of use. Increased demand for grocery and food deliveries during the COVID-19 outbreak has created more business opportunities for e-commerce companies. Companies that weren’t online before, should take this chance now. The strong demand for e-commerce has more broadly offset some of the adverse impact of COVID-19 on traditional retail stores. The surge in demand for the products and services of the e-commerce industry also means intensified competition among market players. With higher expectations from consumers on the reliability of services, companies with more solid technological support are more likely to win over consumers.

3. Remote working tools & Online teaching platforms

Platforms such as Zoom has seen a significant spike in their users that they offer unlimited sessions. With schools being closed, a home based learning was set in place. Universities and companies have relied heavily on video conferences as global travel bans have been imposed and classes and events have been cancelled. That way, students can still have their lectures and employees can still hold their meetings in the safety of their own home. The flexibility offered by remote working and education tools have been been more commended than during the COVID-19 outbreak.  Major telecommunications and technological operators can get onboard to support the platform as this may not just be a one-off opportunity but a long-term adoption after the outbreak.

4. Media and cloud

With many people staying at home for quarantine or social distancing purposes, “stay-at-home” media has been boosted. There’s a significant demand for streaming and gaming services. Those in these industries can take advantage of this and step up their services and content. Many television and streaming services have created new content and extended their free services. Gaming services as well have increased promotions on a monthly basis to free games for the month while people are staying at home. This increases the chances of the users purchasing the games themselves. The increased popularity of live-streaming media has also led to increased business for internet and cloud-based applications. With cinemas closed and film releases being postponed, the streaming and gaming industries should step up right now as this is their opportunity to innovate and prosper.

It is evident that every crisis presents an opportunity. At a time when things seem most dark, it is essential that businesses begin to look ahead at new opportunities. How businesses responds to a crisis is crucial. Some might be paralyzed with panic, while others seem to be more motivated and inspired to venture into new services or expand their current ones. In 10 years when we look back, just like how we looked back at the crisis of 2002 and 2008 in our previous article, we will certainly see the emergence of a new generation of strong global companies founded by idealistic and innovative leaders who found solutions to the problems of today’s COVID-19 crisis and helped rebuild their business and economy.

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