No country has been spared the wave of job losses as the coronavirus pandemic continues to choke economies. While some people are slowly returning to work, the pay is not as good and there are those who may not recover their jobs. This has left many wondering what the future holds for them amid a major global economic slowdown.
However, the pandemic has also accelerated the uptake of technology and experts believe online platforms should now be the focus. James Mwangi, the Equity Group chief executive believes time has come for the world to “recalibrate” as it seeks a new way of doing things. Mwangi said those specialising in transitioning businesses to online and those who operate logistics networks to deliver the goods and services for these businesses stand to reap big.
He said other opportunities lie in e-learning and health technology solutions, virtual restaurants and cyber security solutions as people work remotely. Mwangi also said: “Covid-19 has become a part of us and all businesses must move online or perish.”
“Businesses built with movement of people and in a socialized environment will not survive into the future.”
He added: “Whoever is able to crack the solution of virtualising businesses will really have the biggest opportunity.” Mwangi said entrepreneurs, as problem solvers, must look for ways to address Covid-19 or go around it.
“The opportunities are where the problems are. Every sustainable business is built to solve a problem and there are many problems at the moment,” Mwangi told The Standard.
He said that even banks need to move their businesses to online platforms where staff work from home and customers access banking services without problems. Mwangi, who is also the chairman of the health committee of the Covid-19 fund, said that for the health sector, tele-medicine, the practice of caring for patients remotely when the provider and patient are not physically present with each other, will become key as people keep off hospitals.
“Covid-19, being a health problem, means those in the medical sector will continue being winners.”
Local manufacturers have positioned themselves to produce Personal Protective Equipment as the demand grows. Latest government data shows that 1.7 million Kenyans lost their jobs between April and June as unemployment rates doubled.