Posted on 13 April, 2020
Providing guidance to entrepreneurs and business owners from his own experience in the aftermath of 9/11 and the Great Financial Crisis, "Google and PayPal were founded just two years prior to the dot-com crash. A crisis is a terrible thing to waste", writes Mukul Gulati, Managing Partner, Zephyr Peacock.
Below is an excerpt from the post which first appeared on Economic Times on 13 April 2020:
What are the implications of Covid-19 for businesses in India?
· Business leaders need to focus on the health and safety of employees, customers and the community. This public health crisis is posing a direct risk to lives, and businesses need to prioritize safety and health.
· Businesses need to conserve capital and optimize cost. These steps will help the business survive until such time that the economy starts to recover.
· Business leaders need to adapt the business model to the post-crisis reality. We know that the post-coronavirus world will look very different from the current one and the crisis will give rise to long term trends paving way for new business models.
Businesses such as retail, restaurants and movie theatres that rely on the congregation of a large number of people will be impacted for a considerable period of time. In the post-coronavirus world, new opportunities will emerge, and more resilient business models will develop. Long term trends such as online delivery, cloud-kitchens, tele-medicine and ed-tech will accelerate. Businesses will increase investments in deploying remote communications, artificial intelligence and 'contactless' services.
Times of crisis lead to new opportunities
Google and PayPal were founded just two years prior to the dot-com crash. The second World War provided economies of scale to manufacture and laid the foundation of global leadership for American businesses. The balance of payments crisis in India in 1991 led to economic reforms that helped establish the foundation of modern India.
While globalization is here to stay, western economies and businesses will seek to reduce their reliance on China. Will Indian policy makers create the needed policy support by cutting red tape and improving infrastructure? Will Indian businesses be ready to capitalize on these new opportunities? As the saying goes, 'a crisis is a terrible thing to waste'.
Zephyr Management is a global emerging markets investment manager, specializing in the creation and management of highly focused private equity funds
Since its inception in 1994, Zephyr has sponsored and/or managed 26 investment funds in both public and private securities markets representing approximately $1.2 billion in combined commitments and assets under management
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The firm has initiated several private equity funds investing in several African countries, South Korea, Mexico, India, and Sri Lanka since its founding. Zephyr's funds serve medium size enterprises that are often ignored by larger private equity players. Zephyr funds provide growth capital to established companies with proven business models and sustainable competitive advantages.
Investment activities are currently focused on India, Sri Lanka and Africa.
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