As organisations all over the world are affected during the Covid-19 pandemic, the 'new normal' is about to rise. How would it appear for the start-ups during the post-pandemic era
With the pandemic having shaken up the globe at the beginning of 2020, theories regarding how the situation is going to elaborate the 'new normal' are being discussed. Social distancing appears to be an essential requirement for now and it is expected to remain so in the post-pandemic era.
The short-term impact on India Inc. is visible and relatable to many. It can be said that the pandemic has moved the proverbial 'cheese'. In such times, businesses need to determine the most effective way to capitalise on the opportunities which the new circumstances present.
Remote working - consequences, and opportunities. Several organisations are shifting their focus to the 'online' business model. Businesses other than traditional e-commerce, such as consultancy of several kinds - be it legal, financial, medical - now possess a digital address to adapt to the current situation. This provides a great opportunity for the smaller tech-based organisations that are engaged in offering remote working solutions at affordable rates. This is one area where start-ups may possess a head-start as most of these organisations are tech-based and reliant with using technology conducting their daily business activities.
The pandemic might offer a level playing field to the young entrepreneurs who are looking to compete uniquely. The online entertainment industry is one of the sections, which is expected to have a huge influx since the entertainment avenues with physical involvement, would now be pushed back for some time. Virtual reality (VR) gaming, streaming visual content on top platforms have been doing the rounds for entertaining the audiences during the pandemic and are expected to do the same in the times to come.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, society has seen a sudden rise in the demand for sanitisation products and accessories. This avenue is expected to have significant opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses to create products that help in the sanitisation process such as disinfectants and protective gear at affordable costs. Making use of technology aptly to cater to the sanitation needs of different industries could also be a potential line of business for the entrepreneurs.
Businesses catering to cloud kitchens, and food delivery services have already been popular in the past. They are expected to increase their stake in the market. In the education sector tech-based solutions that enable the institutions to perform several activities, such as conducting lessons, giving assessments and feedback, remotely, are likely to see an upsurge in demand.
An expected challenge that several businesses may face during the post-pandemic era is the lack of technology infrastructure which is supported by a regulatory regime to cater to the needs of modern-day businesses. The Government should enable the creation of a robust technology infrastructure to assist the requirements while ensuring adequate regulation. Steps such as the rise of the 5G spectrum, enactment of the different data-related laws, including the much-awaited Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019, would also be taken up.
*Disclaimer: The views expressed herein constitute the sole prerogative of the author. They neither imply nor suggest the orientation, views, current thinking, or position of FICCI.