Rupa Shinh, Tech investor

Rupa Shinh, Tech investor

Businesses which can provide technology-led solutions to the challenges of a post-Covid world are of great interest to investors right now, says Rupa Shinh, a serial entrepreneur, established board advisor and an investor in technology businesses.

“Technology is going to play a crucial role in the global economic recovery from Covid-19 – there will be priority investment in cloud products in addition to the adoption of a permanent digital first attitude which has already been promptly accelerated,” says Rupa Shinh a multi-award-winning serial entrepreneur, board advisor and investor in technology businesses.

She says, “Throughout these unprecedented times, it has been incredibly encouraging to witness the positive and empowering effects the implementation of technology, tools and further innovation has had on businesses, employees and also on the wider communities.”

She adds: “A key element is that in several cases, the technological changes inspired by Covid-19 will come in the form of an acceleration of existing trends and new trends.”

Rupa says that some of the trends created or accelerated by COVID -19 are likely to change the way that we live, work, learn and relax long after the pandemic is over. Certainly, there is barely an industry that has not been transformed by technology.

She says: “Businesses which can provide technology-led solutions to the challenges of a post-Covid world are of great interest to investors right now. There are a lot of start-ups and growing businesses that are pivoting their business models and developing technologies which are more aligned with solving problems that we are experiencing in the current climate.”

She says that investors are interested in finding businesses which have technology solutions right across the industry spectrum, from telehealth applications in the healthcare sector, to greater industrial automation, to online learning solutions in the education sector and more.

“Even the way businesses interact with their customers is changing and driving new technological advances such as customer service going virtual, with conversational AI, chatbots, cloud call centres and branchless banking.”

She adds: “Whilst last year was a really difficult time and investments really slowed, the fantastic news is that there are investors who are now accelerating investments into new and growing technology businesses that can do the work to adapt to these new circumstances and have a compelling service and product value propositions. Additionally, those that are showing a trend trajectory of growth as per some of the industries mentioned previously. So, for these businesses, this would be the ideal time to start sourcing investment.”

Rupa says: “Whilst, physical travel is making it harder to meet and negotiate with investors face to face, video conferencing is making it possible for entrepreneurs to reach out to potential investors to establish relationships and to gauge if these investors are interested in investing in their companies. Keeping investors informed of growth plans moving forward is also very important.”

Rupa’s Top Tips

1. Adapt operations, stay flexible, increase resilience and achieve a more agile cost base with reducing and slowing cash flows.

2. Reframe or pivot the business value proposition as it is a new value-based economy that lies beyond. Businesses need to adapt to a new kind of customer and must focus on how their businesses truly demonstrate and deliver benefits to society and not just the bottom line.

3. Make sure all your documentation is ready and that you have a really good business plan. Show your investors that you have a long term forecast as well as a 2-3 month forecast. Also present a contingency plan to investors in case the impact of the pandemic continues for longer than expected and show them evidence that you are mitigating their risk as much as possible.

4. Start networking online and start conversations with investors early. Look at your existing network and see who might be able to refer you to a potential investor. A lot of businesses wait to get to a certain trajectory of growth but if you can start establishing that relationship with the investor from the outset by giving them monthly updates then it will be really beneficial.

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