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How is coronavirus impacting startup funding?

There is no doubt that as well as posing a grave threat to life, Covid-19 will bring on a recession not seen in any of our lifetimes. Morgan Stanley’s latest GDP forecast for the US is that economic output will drop by 30% in Q2 of this year. With no clear exit strategy for isolation, we are facing as long as two years of disruption to our daily lives, with governments around the world having to prop up their economies and health services as best they can.

Looking for the positives, the existential threat of Covid-19 may well help relieve the existential threat of climate change. It is looking likely we are on track for the first fall in global greenhouse gas emissions since the 2008 financial crisis.

What does all of this mean for startups and technology development in shipping? It’s still early days, but there has been a significant drop in funding rounds closing. We use a number of listening tools to pick up investment and deal announcements across the verticals we monitor. We would normally see around 30 announcements come across our desk each week, in the last week we have seen none. It is quite possible that deals are still closing but announcements are being held back, but there is no doubt that there will be an ongoing drop off.

If any of the investors among our clients and readers are still actively doing deals, I would love to hear about it.

If you’re a startup founder and worried about the impact of Covid-19, I recommend you read this excellent letter of advice sent by Paul Bassat of Square Peg capital to the founders and CEOs in their portfolio.

Disruption always brings opportunity. Sometimes it can be hard to see, but it is always there. If you concentrate on serving your customers and community in whatever way you can, you will find it.

In unrelated news, a number of you have asked to see samples of our market maps and we have been working on a way of redacting them. We now have something to show you so if you want to see a sample hit reply and let me know.

Lastly, there are many thousands of seafarers who are stuck on ships worldwide due to quarantine and travel restrictions. They are playing a crucial role in supporting the supply chains that are keeping society afloat in this difficult time. My hope is that travel restrictions on seafarers will be lifted worldwide as soon as possible, but in the meantime we all owe a debt of gratitude to the men and women who are keeping us all fed.

Stay safe until next time.

 

Source: by Nick Chubb, Thetius