As the world battles the coronavirus (COVID-19), showing us how interconnected, and interdependent our world has become; investors, entrepreneurs, and even individuals take a blow as the economy stumbles from the great impact of this catastrophe. Investors are seeking, “COVID-immune” alternatives as the pandemic has shown a cogent effect on the economies of many countries around the world as financial markets, tourism, travel, and trade are in disarray. The COVID-19 has disjointed the global economy and reverting to business-as-usual is lethal.
Amidst all the chaos during The Great Plague of 1665-1666, Isaac Newton, then, a student of Trinity College, Cambridge was sent home to isolate. It was during this period he discovered and quantified gravity, calculus, and theory of light. In this regard, we put together this list for that astute Nigerian who in this trying times will strive to be like Isaac Newton and make this period worthwhile despite the uncertainties surrounding the economy.
1. Financial Technology (FinTech)
As we anticipate the possible decline of cash dependency, we predict the skyrocketing of FinTech as more people start to manage their finances digitally. Before the pandemic, FinTech was the largest Venture Capital investment made in Africa raising billions of dollars in 2019. The use of mobile and internet banking to make payments and carry out transfers will accelerate and FinTech companies will benefit strongly during and after the pandemic due to its ease of use and familiarity amongst individuals.
Like FinTech, the e-commerce industry rose to the spotlight, and changed the game of buying, and selling when companies like Jumia, Konga, and Pay Porte emerged. With markets on scheduled opening, social distancing orders, E-commerce is the place to be. One can sit at home, order goods, pay on the spot, and await delivery. As individuals and offices turn to online solutions, the e-commerce industry will not be left in the puddle.
3. Health Care Technology
Nigeria’s fragile healthcare system can only cope with a few COVID-19 cases due to its limited hospitals, and manpower. The introduction of technology into the health system will bridge these gaps as the software is being developed to improve self-assessment, symptoms checking, verification of drugs, and tracking of patient records online. This will enable medical personnel to attend to more severe cases, reducing burden. Governments, and individuals will begin to seek local healthcare innovative solutions to aid mitigation and increased treatment options. The digital delivery of health services post-pandemic will increase drastically.
4. Digital Education
Conventional classroom setting has taken a back seat amidst this crisis, as e-learning methods are adopted by schools in the attempt to curtail disruptions to learn for their students as schools are temporarily shut down. Countries that look to scale up their education sector will take hold of technology, and online learning. This may boost the use of digital tools even in the classroom, and remote learning in a post-COVID world.
The use of mobile phones, laptops, and other gadgets is at rampage as individuals continue to practice social distancing. There has been an outrageous increment in the use of Wi-Fi and mobile data as more people are reading news online, making audio and video calls, watching movies, and the likes. Before the pandemic, there was already prominent usage, it can only shoot up as the world now communicates with less contact.
6. Real Estate
With the growing population, and industrial/urban growth, Lagos, Nigeria has been identified by economists as one of the cities with the highest returns on real estate investment. Its tax rebate and 16500 hectares of land, The Lekki Free Zone has been saluted as one of the biggest economic stimulants in the state and has attracted investors from in and outside the country. No sector is recession-proof but the real estate industry has a level of immunity that investors seek amidst all the uncertainties.
The increase in demand and the decline in the supply of commodities is skyrocketing by the day as food becomes scarce and expensive when available. The need for farmers will begin to rise as individuals seek more food during this pandemic and the demand is predicted to increase post-pandemic. Investments will be made in farming, and technology will be introduced to ensure the availability of food in and out of season. The rain has come, planting season has begun; farmers will smile to the bank in no time!.
8. Digital Currency
The emergence of digital currency is a game-changer in technology. Individuals and companies can buy and sell using these currencies. Cryptocurrencies have a history of a volatile market, and in this crisis, individuals are investing extensively even as the conversion rates fluctuate, with the hope that they hit jackpot. At a time last week, 1 Bitcoin (BTC) was equal to 3.5million naira.
9. Web/Software Development
In recent times, we have seen an increase in business owners taking up the use of websites and mobile apps. Individuals also run websites and use various apps to ease everyday life. Most of these apps come with in-app purchases. We have also seen children gaining interest in becoming a web/software developer. Tech-based industries are likely to avert adverse economic hits.
10. Manufacturing Innovation
Demand and supply hold every business together. When there is high demand and low supply, businesses suffer. Manufacturing innovation is a sector that is yet to be milked and it promises to impact every aspect of manufacturing businesses, from research, design, production, supply chain to marketing, sales, and general life management.
In a country strained by limited capital, the looming recession will hit the economy harshly but companies and individuals will play a role in its recovery. As individuals and workplaces turn to technology solutions, tech-enabled companies will survive this pandemic and benefit in the long run, invest wisely!
Which would you like to venture into? Drop your comment below