30 industries seeing a surge in demand due to the Covid-19 pandemic
A pandemic and quarantine -- unprecedented in our lifetimes – has transformed the global economy and almost every industry in just a few weeks. While many industries have been deeply damaged by the pandemic, many others are seeing a surge in demand.
As the world’s largest online market research store, we have identified thirty areas seeing growth and investment opportunities:
COVID-19 is not an airborne virus, but it can be transmitted through droplets in the air, so some retailers are seeing a surge in interest in air purifiers, HEPA filters, and other air quality systems. The electronics retailer Gain City, in particular, said they were seeing ten times more sales than last year at this time. Even if medical professionals question their effectiveness at stopping the virus, consumers might still want them to maintain air quality when isolated in close quarters.
Biological agents like pathogens and treatments can be used for good or harm, so security measures are critical for laboratories, medical facilities, and industries, expanding the need for bio-safety intelligence, bio-manufacturing, and crisis management.
Facial Recognition companies, like Dermalog in Germany and Telpo in China, are pitching facial recognition software as a sanitary, contactless alternative to fingerprint scanners. Companies are also adapting their facial recognition software to work when people are wearing masks.
Experts have found COVID-19 viruses to remain alive and infectious three days after being left on a surface – and if that surface is a keypad, it can be touched by thousands of other people in a day. For that reason, governments are increasing the limits of contactless payments, changing the landscape of digital payments and security measures. Food delivery companies like the UK’s Deliveroo have switched to contactless payments to minimise risk to employees, and other firms are following suit.
Remote banking, finance, working and learning through electronic devices creates a widespread and urgent need for security, and pandemics and other crises create additional risks. For example, the World Health Organization (WHO) recently issued a warning regarding cybercriminals impersonating the WHO in an attempt to steal money or sensitive information. Personal Identity Management, VPN, VOIPs, firewalls, Unified Endpoint Management and other online security measures will be vital in the months ahead.
As cleaning and disinfecting is vital to preventing the spread of disease, detergents and other cleaners have seen a boom in sales -- more than 200% in Italy in March, for example -- and manufacturers must boost production to meet the demand.
There aren’t enough COVID-19 tests to meet the demand, so creating new tests will be urgently needed, and companies that deal in diagnostics, microbiology, biotechnology and screening will see an increased need for services in the months ahead.
Many consumers are turning to internet shopping during the crisis, opening up new opportunities for online retailers, supermarkets and other sellers of consumer goods. Those businesses, in turn, will need identity management software, cyber-security measures and distribution, as well as social and electronic media for advertising. At the same time, warehouse and delivery employees will be at greater risk of infection -- one reason Amazon increased hourly pay and overtime pay for employees in its fulfilment network.
More and more people are turning to competitive gaming to fill the void left by traditional sports. E-Sports competitions usually feature popular franchises such as League of Legends, Overwatch and Dota among others. However, traditional sports bodies are taking advantage of the new opportunity to engage with fans. Recently, Formula One launched the Virtual Grand Prix series which will see current F1 drivers competing alongside celebrities and gamers on the official F1 2019 video game. An 128-team FIFA 20 tournament the "Ultimate Quaren-Team Cup" has also been announced which will see teams like AS Roma, Benfica and West Ham compete on the virtual pitch.
During a civil crisis, security companies, police, military and private individuals are seeing a need for increased firearms, ammunition, and security devices of all kinds. The online retailer ammo.com noted its sales increase by 222 percent over February, and gun manufacturers are struggling to meet the demand.
There has been a surge in demand for home food delivery with more and more people staying indoors and practicing social distancing. Delivery services like Deliveroo, Postmates and UberEats are all experiencing increased demand for their services and have taken steps like offering contactless delivery to protect customers and delivery drivers. This trend towards contactless delivery has created a unique opportunity for delivery robot companies to put their technology to the test. Driverless delivery startup Neolix Technologies recently announced it has raised nearly $28.7 million to mass produce its self-driving vehicles.
The crisis has created a sudden demand for hand sanitiser among businesses, hospitals, and personal consumers. The shortage has led many businesses to shift their operations quickly to meet the demand; in Ireland, a number of alcohol distilleries switched to producing hand sanitiser in a matter of weeks.
Hardware stores are seeing unprecedented demand for tools and hardware supplies as consumers in self-isolation use the time to complete home improvement projects.
With most gyms closed and the virus keeping everyone indoors, consumers are turning to home equipment, exercise bikes, weights, personal fitness trackers and other gear to stay fit while confined. Personal trainers are offering e-fitness courses, and online retailers report running out of exercise equipment.
Concerns over the spread of coronavirus has led to increased interest in ultraviolet LED technology which can be used to kill influenza germs and sterilize surfaces, leading companies like GermFalcon and Viosys to capitalise on this opportunity.
The pandemic has caused massive disruption in the global shipping of goods. Ports need to screen incoming goods more carefully, leading to delays. Wooden pallets from China are being destroyed rather than reused, for fear of contagion, creating a sudden demand for that resource. With online retailers shipping goods directly to customers, businesses must expand their infrastructure for trucking, warehousing, parcel delivery, fulfilment centres and security. Warehouse workers must stay on the job and even increase the workforce; Amazon said it is hiring 100,000 new workers to beef up its shipping operations, but many of its orders will still be delayed.
More people are engaging with social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram in order to stay in contact with friends and family while in self-isolation. Popular video sharing app TikTok has seen an uptake in users as people use it to vent and share their experiences of how Covid19 has impacted their lives.
With hospitals overstretched by the crisis and mild cases of COVID-19 treatable with paracetamol and other common drugs, pharmacies and other retailers will have to keep well stocked. Also, other health problems don’t stop for a pandemic, and people have all the same diseases they would ordinarily have, with the same demand for pharmaceuticals.
As consumers prepare for weeks of isolation, many are stocking up on packaged foods, and companies like General Mills are increasing production to meet the demand. Nielsen reported that “comfort food” sales are spiking, with pastry purchases up almost 20%.
Drug companies around the world are scrambling, not just to find a vaccine for COVID-19, but to supply drugs that would treat the symptoms. Companies like Eli Lily, Moderna and Gilead Sciences saw their stocks shoot up once they began working on cures for the pandemic.
The World Health Organisation estimates that 89 million medical masks will be required every month during this crisis, yet many countries are facing a severe shortage. They estimate a 40% increase in manufacturing to meet this new demand. Gloves, hazmat suits and other health protective gear will also be urgently needed.
To avoid the human crowds that can spread disease, schools at all levels – for children and adults alike – are switching to an online model. This threatens to collapse the increasingly expensive model of traditional colleges and leave the market wide open for video streaming, educational software, home-schooling, game-based learning and other remote-learning innovations.
During a crisis that threatens to overwhelm the healthcare system, more consumers will turn to any electronic and online means to monitor their health and seek treatment, including telemonitoring, health apps, and various healthcare software and web services. Online health consultant companies like Dialogue report a surge in customer interest in the last two weeks, causing them to almost double their number of employees, and medical app InkBlot has seen a 200% increase in demand.
Temperature scanning technology is vital in hospitals, to monitor a pandemic characterised by fever, but also in airport security at a time when borders are being monitored. Companies like Ramco are combining thermal sensors with facial recognition as a contactless alternative to less sanitary forms of personal identification.
Dozens of companies around the world launched into a global race to find a COVID-19 vaccine, and pharmaceutical companies will need immediate information in virology, antivirals, virus removal and inactivation, drug delivery and testing, and licensing. Medical professionals will require information on respiratory diseases and infection, and officials at all levels will need the best inside information the moment it becomes available.
COVID-19’s main symptoms are respiratory, so ventilators, spirometers, oxygen concentrators, and other breathing devices are seeing a sudden demand. Ventilator manufacturers like Airon, which ordinarily sell 50 a month, are getting orders for thousands and aren’t able to fulfil them all.
Companies scrambled to meet the sudden demand for telecommuting options during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic, creating an immediate and widespread need for video conferencing, certification services, mobile network equipment, terminals and software, as well as VPNs and other security measures. The video-conferencing company Zoom saw its shares double since the start of the outbreak in December, making it now worth more than Uber and Lyft combined.
Perhaps the most obvious beneficiary of the current situation has been home entertainment companies like Netflix and other streaming services, to the point that Youtube and Netflix have reduced image quality to help internet providers cope with the surging demand for bandwidth. Online subscription companies, video-on-demand, livestreams and other such services will continue to flourish in the months ahead.
With a new interest in home entertainment of all kinds, this is an opportunity for creators of virtual and augmented reality systems to promote their products.
Workplace chat solutions like Slack, Troop Messenger and Brosix offer a fast and convenient way to communicate with colleagues. As an increased number of companies switch to remote working to limit the risk of infection, they are relying more and more on workplace chat to facilitate communication and collaboration between team members.
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