Businesses seem to be undergoing a lot of trauma and this has caused a lot of pain to many across the world. There are several businesses that are going to find it hard to recover and there are several industries that may change for better or for worse. I had taken a look at some of the businesses that would find it hard to recover and return to the same place before this virus broke loose. I want to look at some of the businesses that are going to change for the better and hold great opportunities for startups.
The Education Business
The last time Education underwent a great evolution was just after the industrial revolution got started. Governments wanted Businesses to not employ children and in return, the government agreed to provide trained youth. The schooling system which exists even today was born. Make kids learn a little of everything and prepare them to go to factories. Finally, the day when this wrong can be righted seems to be around the corner. The coronavirus has forced all schools and colleges to be shut down. Harvard University gave its students a 5-day notice. On the 10th March, they sent out a circular asking their students to leave campus by the 15th. A lot of international students were left in a lurch.
Students are required to look at alternate sources which include MooC courses, where they get to see the subject that would like to pursue rather than those forced upon them by the institution. This truly has the potential make everyone take a second look at how education has been disseminated. Why learn and what we learn. I feel Education is one of those segments that stands to benefit a lot from this predicament as more formats get a chance and lots of experiments take place.
The Healthcare Business
Telemedicine is a concept that all of us have heard of but none of us has experienced. The reason for this is because telemedicine is one of those grey areas of medicine. There is no guideline to govern it. As such it can be practised but it is frowned up by the Medical Council of India because they believe physical examination is essential. The current situation has forced the government to make it possible for all doctors to pursue telemedicine. The Government of India has issued a circular making it possible for telemedicine to be practised rather than putting thousands of GPs at risk.
Have you got yourself screened for Coronavirus? I am sure not. The problem is with testing methods. Again the plethora of AI based companies that are trying to break the way blood tests and other tests have been conducted will change the way the next pandemic is dealt with. I am sure governments and medical bodies are going to get much more open minded about using such technology in the future and such startup will thrive.
Perhaps the greatest beneficiaries of the current scenario are SaaS businesses. These tools for team management, accounting, ticketing, etc. are unavoidable in the current work from home situation. It would be impossible to coordinate with a team of even 20 people if everything has to go through mail or slack. SaaS usage will see a huge rise in the coming years and also more and more workplaces will experiment with work from home and avoid having very large offices.
The Business of Drones
I have always maintained that all on-demand delivery will only scale profitably if the same is done through drones. Now, with this contact-based disease, there is further impetus to pursue this path and convincing governments to give this a chance is going to become a lot easier. Don’t be surprised if in the next 2 years you are having your parcel delivered to your terrace by a drone.