The ubiquitous face mask does more than protect against viral spread; it also changes the way we look at one another—and thus symbolizes the mystery of customer behavior in the pandemic. Several new McKinsey research efforts analyze the changes taking place in the homes of consumers, on their phones, and in stores. “Reimagining marketing in the next normal,” for example, documents six of the biggest shifts emerging from COVID-19. One of the most intriguing is the rising importance of neighborhoods: with travel largely shut down, marketers must figure out how to localize their outreach.

SOURCE: Mc Kinsey

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The pandemic has focused attention on how dependent we all are on what happens in other parts of the world for the products we use every day. As businesses look to reinvigorate their operations after the crisis, current innovations in sustainability certification can help build more resilient supply chains through a stronger focus on continuous improvement, transparency and shared responsibility. Here are three ways to do just that.

SOURCE: World Economic Forum

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Long queues outside essential services establishments, strained supply chains, rapidly shifting customer purchase patterns, wildly disconnected demand-supply requirements; these are just some of the visible impacts of the current COVID-19 situation in India. Disruptions to supply chains have been unprecedented in their scale and severity, and these are further amplified when the underlying supply chain is global in nature.

The current situation has truly brought to forefront the interconnectivity and interdependency that exists in every aspect of our lives, but nowhere else has this been more acutely felt than in the global supply chain. In this article, we highlight some of the expected changes and deliberate on impending issues in the supply chain industry in the ‘COVIDian’ era, from both customer and business perspectives.

SOURCE: Business Today

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COVID-19 is seen as the first crisis of the Anthropocene where economic activity has come in direct opposition to public health. When we are forced to think of new ways to make things work, it is likely that we will have new trends in the way we produce, distribute, purchase and consume things. Those trends, influenced by our new limitations, seem to favour a circular economy – the only economic philosophy that can sustainably cater to people’s needs in the long run.

SOURCE: World Economic Forum

Image credit: REUTERS/Tobias Schwarz

The order to shut down operations or force employees to work from home has affected almost all sectors of the economy and increased the number of unemployed. The negative impact on national economies is devastating with almost all economies in the world likely to register steep decline inactivity. Covid-19 has become the new dreaded word, forcing many companies to change and adapt to survive or face the bleak choice of bankruptcy. One sector that is helping find solutions for businesses, both big and small, is fintech, offering relatively low-cost digital services in a number of ways.

SOURCE: Financial Mirror

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Many businesses in Africa have discovered new ways to bring goods and services to their clients during the COVID-19 lockdown. Both big and small entrepreneurs stand to benefit from online trade after the pandemic.

SOURCE: DW

Image credit: alliance/dpa/G.Jun

One of the most striking impacts of the Covid-19 outbreak is the harsh way it has exposed the weaknesses in supply chains for businesses around the world. Many were caught out amid panic buying of daily necessities, such as toilet paper, the unexpected demand surges for baking products and some food items, and most tragic of all, the scarcity of life-saving drugs, ventilators, masks and personal protective equipment. Despite decades spent fine-tuning supply chains, most companies found themselves struggling to fulfil their needs for raw materials or finished products.

SOURCE: The Straits Times

Image credit: .ST PHOTO: ZHANG XUAN

Over the next 15 months, Africa is set to receive a total of $50bn towards its economic recovery from the World Bank, which has identified the protection of the region’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) as essential to its economic bounce-back from the coronavirus. Financial technology (fintech) has a key role to play in this.

SOURCE: Oxford Business Group

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After the devastation wreaked by Hurricane Maria in 2017, the Dominican company, Rodney’s Wellness Retreat used a Direct Assistance Grant to rebuild and enhance the company’s resilience. Despite the halt to operations due to the COVID- 19 pandemic, Managing Director of the Retreat, Lucilla Lewis anticipates “a strong recovery”.

SOURCE: Carib-export

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