On March 11, 2020, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic and the world we live in would never be the same. We have seen so many changes over the past 2 years, one of the biggest changes being how we engage and communicate with people. When cities went into lockdown and people could not leave their homes, every type of business was impacted. In order to survive in the new world, businesses have been forced to change how they operate.
This is an exciting time for Floridians who own an existing business and those who want to start a new business. There is tremendous opportunity for anyone willing and able to leverage and adapt to emerging trends in e-commerce and technology. And our team of lawyers can help you with all your business needs.
According to World Bank Group, a key element for successful business creation is access to digital technology, which can strengthen the path to recovery and unleash the potential of aspiring entrepreneurs. The rate that new businesses are forming is very rapid, which experts believe is a positive sign of the economy. In 2021, 5.4 million applications were submitted to start companies, a 53% jump from 2019 pre-pandemic levels, according to census data. And a third of those were classified as “high-propensity applications,” which means they are new businesses that are expected to create new jobs. And in January 2022 alone, nearly a half million applications were submitted to start a company.
There are numerous factors that have created this environment primed for new businesses and entrepreneurship. Factors which have influenced this include an increase in time and resource availability, which resulted from people being forced to stay at home and restrictions which limited the ability to move about freely. And staying at home, for work, social activities, and shopping, gave people more free time, and studies have shown that most people saved money.
Relief for Existing Businesses and Access to Funding for Startups
The federal government, state government and private sector are all providing different types of financial relief for existing businesses. But what about funding for new Startup companies?
Many financial experts predict funding for startups will be limited as a result of the global pandemic. In particular, startups that are not in close proximity to large technology hubs (such as Silicon Valley) may have a harder time receiving venture capital. There is also lingering concern about the availability of financial assistance for some existing startups.
Venture capital firms and angel investors have shown some concerns that the pandemic will harm “early-stage investment activity” this year. However, there is significant interest in investing in business sectors affected by the pandemic, such as healthcare and logistics, which are obvious choices. Other obvious choices for investors include new ventures that facilitate remote work and productivity.
Technology that Supports and Promotes Virtual Workers
In the past two years there has been a significant increase of new users to digital and remote services. Additionally, a greater number of older consumers are turning to e-commerce. And this is not a temporary change, as a significant percentage of people and businesses who adapted to the use of remote and digital services prior to or during the pandemic will continue to use them. This means there is a huge opportunity for growth to meet the demand for new applications and technology that facilitate remote work, as well as education, entertainment and even physical fitness.
Is Remote Work the Way of the Future?
Telecommuting/telework, work from home (WAH), remote working, virtual work – whatever term you use, the location where people work has been one area where businesses have seen tremendous change. Prior to the pandemic, 23% of workers who had a job where they could work remotely, did so all of the time or most of the time. Within 6 months of COVID being declared a pandemic, more than 71% of workers, were working remotely. As governmental restrictions to isolate are lifted, businesses have moved employees back to the office; but not everyone. An estimated 59% (6 out of 10) of workers who can work remotely continue to do so, many of them by choice.
Services for Home Delivery
The Increased and ongoing demand for home delivery of consumer goods, groceries, and medication has resulted in untold opportunity for new and existing businesses to capitalize on this trend. The transportation and warehouse sectors have never made up a bigger share of the workforce; a strong indicator of our all-time historic appetite for consumer goods.
How We Can Help
All of these changes have legal implications for businesses in Florida. As you work to adapt to this post-pandemic life, we can help you navigate the “new norm” and handle any legal matter, from the formation of a new business to funding for startups and existing businesses. The award-winning attorneys at Battaglia, Ross, Dicus & McQuaid, P.A. have the knowledge and experience to serve you. We want to be your trusted legal advisors for all matters.
Contact us today for a free consultation.