There are numerous instances in human history about developments that were triggered by the crisis. Pandemics have fueled technological innovations and helped advance healthcare systems. Even economic crises like the economic downturn in 2008 encouraged innovation and development, as evident from the launch of enterprises like Airbnb and Uber. That the current crisis of the coronavirus that is sweeping across the world will lead to new developments is evident from several emerging trends among entrepreneurs and even bigger companies that are keen to identify opportunities for advancement.
According to Beth Debouvre, businesses have always played a critical role in helping society wade through the crisis, whether economical or otherwise, by encouraging innovations that shape society after the crisis goes away.
Beth Debouvre sees a boost for startups on the horizon
Most businesses have come to a standstill due to the coronavirus that has driven people to seek protection in their homes. They want to prevent the spread of the deadly virus since there is still no cure. But there are some exceptions, too, like groceries, delivery services and cleaning services that help people in their efforts to maintain social distancing and hygiene. The need for sanitizing public places is growing extensively by disinfecting various surfaces like handrails of elevators and conveyor belts, door handles, etc. Some entrepreneurs are latching on the opportunity and have started manufacturing disinfectants of a different kind that can effectively sanitize open surfaces. By using a lightbox that emits UV light, the novel sanitizing device can effectively clean the surface from viruses, germs, and bacteria.
Games and education apps
Businesses that offer learning products for kids like educational aids are also seeing tremendous opportunities from the coronavirus crisis as the focus shifts to home learning when schools and other educational institutions remain closed indefinitely. Besides learning, keeping kids entertained at homes is also a big motivation for these businesses. Learning apps are in high demand, as evident from the steep rise in users of Sharezone and Skills4schools. According to the makers, the average users ranging from 300-500 per day have gone up five times during this time. The company expects the number to rise at the same rate or faster as kids remain at home longer, which is compelling schools to think about online educational tools.
Like educational apps, gaming apps are also in high demand as kids seek more entertainment when stuck up at home. A brand-new gaming platform for kids, Quarantine Kids, has garnered thousands of subscriptions with the first few days of launching. The entrepreneurs behind the product, sisters named Ruth and Anne Löwenstein, chose the moment to convert their hobby into a business opportunity as they tasted success with Ideenpost or Idea Post that went viral.
Companies get a new direction
Companies hit by the coronavirus are trying to seize any opportunity perceivable amid the crisis. They are more innovative in using their infrastructure and resources for manufacturing products for responding to the crisis. Distilleries are now producing hand sanitizers, and apparel makers are producing personal protective equipment (PPE) for hospitals.
Similarly, automotive suppliers are stepping in to manufacture ventilators to meet the unprecedented demand.