In his estimation, IT businessman and investor Rustam Gilfanov shares his vision for future-defining trends and technologies.
Investing in Environmental Social Governance was one of the main trends of the past year. There was an ESG boom in venture capital: funds were required to think about the hugely positive results of investing in projects that solve global environmental problems, such as climate change. In the near future, climate technologies can be integrated into a wide range of segments such as financial technologies, agricultural technology, transport, energy, manufacturing, and construction. And presentations of startups will start to include slides confirming their positive social and environmental impact.
The Growing Popularity of Remote Work
The remote work segment still has room to grow. If Zoom was just a startup in 2011, then in 2020 it became a household name due to COVID-19. Other major enterprise tools such as Cisco Webex, Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting, and Verizon BlueJeans also provide video conferencing services and make remote work easier around the world. Looking for new solutions in this segment is still a great opportunity for small startups.
According to the latest projections, 5G will reach over 60% of the world’s population by 2030. The spread of 5G will have a huge impact on the development of AR, media, and entertainment will contribute to more efficient remote work, and will also raise the level of medicine. For example, implants for diagnosing cardiovascular diseases will be able to send data to doctors automatically.
Despite widespread discussion of new technologies, there are business segments that can go “back” faster than anticipated. For example, this applies to online education, virtual events, online fitness, i.e. areas where the virtual experience does not match the real one. Accordingly, some investors will lose money on investments that do not have a large enough market to survive when the restrictions are lifted.
According to Gilfanov, we have technologies, a need for change, and problems that need to be solved. Experience suggests that periods of crisis and recession can be periods of intense innovation and entrepreneurship. In addition, the venture capital sector is thriving, and many investors are striving to contribute to solving real-world problems by actively working with entrepreneurs to create the next generation of world-class companies.