Investor Insights

June - 2020

Post-pandemic potential

Before we look at the post-pandemic world, let’s look at where we are today. China and S. Korea may be post-pandemic already while in Europe, except for the UK, countries seem to be on the downslope with some cautiously opening. Chaos reigns in the US. Everywhere, vaccines seem to be still many months away from general use. This patchy situation leaves everyone, not least investors, very uncertain and is seen most clearly in where people are putting their money. Investor sentiment is sometimes (not always) a reasonable way of gauging future directions of the planet. Right now, investors are expressing their uncertainty through their preference for cash-like instruments. Gold is heading towards the August 2011 50-year high of around USD 1,825 an ounce and, despite the US chaos, the US dollar’s de facto status as the global reserve currency is keeping it strong. Even with the strong dollar, Bitcoin is back to over US$ 9,000.
The story on Bloomberg is that Asia is the place to be for investor value, especially given the growth opportunities and the fact that a number of countries in that area are in the post-pandemic phase. But we are more interested in the industrial sectors – it is here that the longer-term future of our world is being written. So, this short newsletter explores the most likely upcoming industrial areas. Enjoy!

Everything digital

The enforced lockdown came as a shock to us all, but many adapted quickly to working, studying, and socializing online. Although most organizations were reluctant to embrace online working before the lockdown, many are now embracing it. We know that the world has changed when Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey told his employees that they could choose to work online forever. Education institutions are often reluctant to change but many have seen that there are some advantages 

in having at least some of their classes online. Organizations of all types with cash-strapped Balance Sheets are looking for ways to economize. Business travel is always an early cut when times are tight. If people can work from home some of the time, do you need that owering edifice of an office block? Bank of America’s global research team concluded while the health care sector would benefit, travel and real estate would be challenged. In this newsletter we look at the areas that will see an increase in investor interest.   

Inside this issue:

“Cash is king (or queen)” again!

Efficient data centers

One little-know statistic is that data centers consume some 15% of all the electricity generated in the world. Most of this is for cooling the data center rather than running the servers themselves. This is an incredibly inefficient way to keep the electronics cool. As the CEO of a company we are following put it, “If you had a bottle of soda that you wanted to cool, would you cool the entire room, or would you just cool the bottle?”
In an ‘everything digital’ world this waste, cost, and pollution impact is expected to increase massively. The firm we are following has developed a patented way to cool just the servers in a way that wastes none of the energy, significantly reducing the cost of data centers, a veritable contribution to sustainability. Now in the manufacturing and roll-out phase, we will be following this technology and this firm closely. For more information, contact us directly at

Secure medical records

While clinicians and others focus on the practical day-to-day aspects of caring for the sick, the hidden secret to efficient and safe medical care is electronic healthcare records (EHR). Properly administered these ensure that everyone concerned: doctors, nursing staff, pharmacies, carers, and the patients themselves have access to the same critical information, The Bank of America’s Global Research team, in their May 2020 report ‘The World after COVID Primer’, listed EHR among the MedTech/HealthTech areas most likely to benefit in the post-COVID world.
But, how do we ensure that the records are secure, and complete?
One approach is to use blockchain technology. A firm that we are following, has perfected a blockchain-based secure, efficient, medical records technology that is now being rolled-out to selected medical centers.
Although the world’s focus now is on curing and caring for those infected, there is no doubt that, post-pandemic, attention will switch to making all healthcare systems more effective. Watch this space!

Virtual education

According to the World Economic Forum, by 2030 more than one billion people will need to reskill. “In the next two years alone, 42% of core skills required to perform existing jobs are expected to change.” Will this education be conducted in a conventional classroom or learning environment ?
We think not! Online education is already a recognized way of gaining new skills away from the workplace at a relatively low cost. Even for the more practical hands-on skills, virtual reality and mixed reality applications are being rolled-out.  All this move to online education will require a significant investment in education technology (EdTech). 
While the big social-media firms are working on generic ‘home-working’ platforms (article), online educators and firms will be looking to upgrade their toolkits. We are watching this sector closely and will share our findings in a future newsletter.

Where to next?

This is the question everyone is asking. Investors holding cash-instruments for safety are beginning to peek over the parapet to identify opportunities that offer better returns than low-interest funds. We talk to a wide range of firms  mainly early-stage businesses  to identify the ‘next big thing.’ While the world has been badly shaken by recent events there is hope.
We aim to find those beacons of hope for the future, but our focus will always be on the longer term. The world must become more sustainable, more equitable, and healthier. Our aim is to help those firms whose products, services, ethics, and culture meet these aims.
If yours is a firm that aspires to these same objectives, and is in need of investment, talk to us today.
If your firm is looking for innovative opportunities for investment, and find our vision for the future compelling, talk to us today.
We aim to make a difference for firms, on both sides of the investment wall, that also want to make a difference.
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