The COVID-19 pandemic is an unnerving global crisis that has held the world hostage. It’s definitely a challenge to the world’s healthcare system. The repercussions of this viral disease go much further, shaking the economy to its core.
When Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced a 3-week lockdown, a country of 1.3 billion people and a GDP of $3 trillion came to a complete halt. Health experts have hailed this move as “necessary but painful.” However, an extended lockdown would massively hamper the Indian economy both in the short and the long term. In fact, in the light of the ongoing crisis, both Barclays and Moody’s have downgraded India’s 2020 growth forecast from 4.5% to 2.5%.
All businesses, regardless of their size, are going to be affected. But are all their industries that could also see a boom in the current situation? In this blog, we will explore the impact of this pandemic and the subsequent lockdown on different industries.
The Unprecedented Situation
Amidst the lockdown, Indian businesses are not only experiencing massive liquidity crunch but also large-scale supply chain disruptions. Many states have completely closed their border to prevent the spread of the virus, with large quantities of goods, including equipment and raw materials, stuck at the borders and ports. Tourism, Travel, brick-and-mortar, retail, restaurant, and manufacturing industries along with their entire value chains have been the hardest hit with an estimated loss of over $700 billion.
Industries that are thriving
Remote work with the adoption of digital apps
There is a bright side to everyone working from home during this pandemic as it has led to a large-scale digital disruption. Digitization is no longer a relaxed choice for businesses, but a necessary step. A lot of apps like Skype, Zoom, Teams, etc., are seeing high traffic as people collaborate and discuss digitally.
Boom in eCommerce
From building their own integrated eCommerce stores to setting up e-payment platforms, businesses are realizing the full potential of digitization to not only reach customers and drive conversions but also create a seamless buying experience. According to the Quantum metric, online sales have increased by 52% and the number of online shoppers by 8.8% since the pandemic began.
FinTech: More online, contactless transactions
Online sales cannot work without online payments. As physical stores remain closed and e-shopping surges, customers will turn to their bank’s e-platforms to access their accounts.
Moreover, with the WHO recommending people to avoid cash payments and turn to contactless payment as a means to limit the spread of the virus, the pandemic is turning out to be a catalyst for the Fin-tech industry.
“The shift in the payments habit amidst the COVID-19 and post will be fairly visible in the coming months and it will roll out into a full-fledged mechanism. The focus will be on how human touch or interaction can be done away with for payments.” said, Raj Phani, Founder & Chairman of Zaggle in an Economic Times article.
As an online payments company, Zaggle is making strides to make expense management completely digital and seamless with solutions like virtual corporate cards that can be accessed across all platforms. Other upcoming projects include payment solutions for parking making it contactless altogether.
EdTech: Towards digital learning
As most schools are suspended across the country, many have turned to online education. Traditional institutions are accelerating their transformation by adopting technology to enable seamless remote, digital teaching. This brings a huge opportunity for EdTech companies. They are managing their increased server loads, launching more courses, and helping traditional institutions embrace digitization.
Trending entertainment and health and wellness apps
With a lot of free time on their hands, people have also turned to different means of entertainment such as games, Netflix, etc. As gyms are closed down, people are exploring fitness apps to get some exercise during this lockdown.
Amid this lockdown, we are watching companies make their processes digital, fast. Employees are also learning to collaborate better, digitally. Businesses are more concerned about the wellness of their employees. They are exploring how they can automate and digitize employee rewards and recognition, expense management, etc. People at home are looking to grow with online learning and home workouts.
What we are doing
In light of the current situation, we are giving away our all-in-one expense management solution to startups and SMEs for free. Our employees continue to deliver their best as they continue working from 200+ home offices. We have also gone ahead a step further and disbursed a COVID bonus of 10,000 INR to all our employees for their essential needs using our expense management platform and multi-wallet Zinger Card.
These are testing times for sure and we can make it through by being there for each other. Please feel free to reach out to us if you have any questions.