Four Sectors That Have Thrived Internationally in 2020
In 2020, nothing has been quite as we’d anticipated.
The UK and global economy have experienced an incredible shock as a result of the worldwide pandemic – and we’ve all suffered difficulties in some form or another throughout this past twelve months.
That said, while many of us have understandably been preoccupied with the doom and gloom of it all, some business sectors have not only survived but thrived on an international scale this year.
Many businesses at home and abroad have been compelled to drive their business in new directions, through restructuring and reorganising in order to cater to the requirements of a world with very different needs.
Here are four sectors that have been able to thrive in a challenging economic climate this year.
Ecommerce & Logistics
Thousands of businesses around the world have had to move quickly to focus their energies on digitising their business and selling online throughout this year. In fact, experts predict that ecommerce retail sales are expected to reach $4.13 trillion in 2020.
In the UK alone, Edge Retail Insights claim that the pandemic is expected to account for over £5.3bn ecommerce sales this year – and what’s more, industry insiders predict that this trend will not retract back to a pre-COVID world.
The pandemic has undoubtedly had an influential impact on how consumers are interacting with the retail sector, by reshaping buying habits and redefining how brands and retailers are structuring their operations.
As a direct result of this, the warehousing and logistics sector, which was strong before the pandemic, will continue to strengthen. In fact, in no small part due to the pandemic, the global logistics market is expected to grow by $95.42 billion between now and 2024.
Virtual interaction has been a mainstay for most of us this year. Whether that be for personal or professional use, we’ve all had to make the most of the technology available to us.
In a year that has been dedicated largely to the idea of personal growth and how we can develop as human beings, the way we communicate has certainly been at the forefront of this movement, and it should come as no surprise that the video conferencing sector has seen tremendous growth.
At the end of April this year Microsoft Teams boasted 75 million worldwide daily users, up a massive 70% on the same period six weeks prior. And incredibly, given that Microsoft has been developing IT solutions for almost five decades, Teams became the company’s fastest-growing business app ever.
Zoom, meanwhile, reported an almost 170% increase year-on-year in the first quarter of this year and expects end of year sales to have increased by a whopping $623m!
As we emerge from this crisis and dust ourselves down, many of our new behavioural habits will endure – for example, it’s unlikely that we’ll be attending events or travelling around the world for business meetings, for a little while yet. To put a more positive spin on things though, at least we all now have a much better understanding of a range of different video conferencing platforms.
Tech companies are now recognising the ongoing prospects that lie ahead in a vastly different marketplace and are heavily investing in their conferencing technologies to appeal to new customers, in both domestic and business settings.
Cybersecurity is big business these days, and as we continue our transition to the next industrial revolution, this reliance will only continue to grow.
The trend toward an increasing dependence on online tools and digital working models will only increase post-COVID and indeed, post-Brexit as UK-based manufacturing increases.
From an international perspective, more and more businesses are moving their services online, and professionals have spent much of the past twelve months working from home, using personal devices to connect to home networks.
Indeed, a study by investment publication LearnBonds reports that 68% of major organisations are planning to imminently increase their cybersecurity spending in line with changing working habits.
Health & Wellbeing
In recent weeks, the Pfizer-BioNTech has been approved in both the UK and Canada, with more to follow suit.
As we adjust to what comes after this pandemic, the desire to continue to spend on health and wellbeing products will remain strong.
Pharmaceutical and biotech companies will be keen to heed the warnings from what we’ve experienced this year, and research into disease prevention and treatment will continue at pace, which will require further substantial investment.
Not only this, but new technologies are transforming the way we think about looking after ourselves, both mentally and physically. For example, during the height of the pandemic, many suffering with illnesses turned to virtual consultations, and personal trainers continued to lead sessions online.
Recent statistics show that the health and wellbeing sector has continued to be one of the largest and fastest-growing sectors in the world, and there are no signs that this trend will slow in the coming years.
There’s no question that this year has been a tough one for many businesses, but there is indeed light at the end of the tunnel.
However, this blog just goes to show that there is a genuine opportunity, even in such strange times, for businesses to grow and scale-up, domestically and even internationally too.