How COVID-19 is redefining enterprise comms
As COVID-19 has spread globally in recent weeks, remote working is now the norm across the US.
Business owners and corporate staff have quickly woken to a world where traditional face-to-face business has been replaced with digital communications and virtual meetings overnight.
Business events, large and small, have been cancelled or postponed to halt the spread of the virus. This is making ‘business as usual’ an unprecedented challenge, as live press conferences, product launches, investor briefings, customer seminars, town hall meetings, campaign kick-offs and other business-critical communications cannot wait.
In fact, a survey by Econsultancy and Marketing Week in March revealed that 82% of North American marketers say their business customers are reluctant to schedule in-person meetings. Finding effective and professional digital alternatives is now more critical than ever.
First and foremost, the priority of any business is the welfare of its staff, customers, partners and guests. Yet as the halt of up-close personal interactions hits business progress, savvy enterprises are exploring new ways to engage, inform and serve employees, customers, investors, suppliers and other stakeholders. Organizations of all sizes and budgets are seeking effective ways to survive and thrive via digital alternatives.
Many are discovering that they can produce TV-quality broadcasts of corporate events by using a professional studio or creating a specialized remote production environment. We at The Switch are working with enterprises ranging from start-ups to global giants, helping them broadcast to their audiences in a way that takes the virtual event beyond the basic to something that stands out from the crowd.
Leveraging our two decades of broadcast production experience, we are helping enterprises to create the gravitas of a top-calibre live business event, in many instances employing our studios in London, New York or Los Angeles to communicate to global markets.
Running industry summits across continents using studios and connecting in remote locations can enable a worldwide audience to engage in real-time and in a meaningful way. Professional broadcast facilities supported by industry-leading technical crews are unencumbered by the latency/delay problems that other one-size-fits-all conference solutions often come with – and can meet the highly diverse needs of enterprises without breaking the budget.
Pausing all communications until the crisis passes is not an option. Effective communication at every level of society, including between and within businesses, becomes increasingly with each passing day.
What’s more, businesses must come to realize that they are not simply making the best of a bad situation, but in fact must communicate more effectively than ever in order to create new opportunities. Those are the businesses that will emerge from the current crisis as strong as or stronger than before.
Until the worst of the pandemic is over and day-to-day life as we know it returns, it is essential for enterprises to find solutions that minimize the number of people who need to travel while providing a safe environment for them to connect with the people they need to reach.
Taking a professional broadcast approach to live enterprise events enables companies to continue to successfully launch new products, share company news, talk to their employees and create thought leadership to drive home the messages that fuel their business.
By Robert Szabo-Rowe, Senior Vice President of Product Management, The Switch
M&A activity key lever for future tech sector growth
Despite the continuing uncertainty of the pandemic, the tech sector has witnessed soaring dealmaking activity over the past year, rocketing in the second half of 2020, with the last quarter of 2020 a record one for M&A activity, and momentum continuing into 2021.
Dealmaking in tech sector soars in past year
And the latest figures bear this out with the number of technology M&A deals totalling US$208.44bn globally in Q1 2021, according to GlobalData. While the US holds top spot both in volume of deals (1034) and total value (US$140.61bn), Europe ranked next with 649 deals (US$44.49bn) with the UK continuing its reign as Europe’s biggest M&A market with 204 deals.
In particular, megadeals – those valued at US$5bn or more – soared in 2020 representing 59% of all global technology sector deal value in 2020, up from 47% in 2019, according to the latest edition of the EY Technology Global Capital Confidence Barometer.
This tech sector trend towards megadeals is backed up by EY’s CCB data, with 16% of tech sector respondents planning to pursue transformative deals valued at US$5bn or more in the near-term.
While technology deal activity “all but stopped at the beginning of 2020 after fluctuating between historic highs and lows, companies pivoted quickly and tech M&A exploded in the second half of the year”, says Barak Ravid, EY Global TMT Leader for Strategy and Transactions.
M&A activity level for tech sector growth
Looking ahead to the future, technology executives are optimistic, with nearly half (47%) expecting profitability to fully rebound this year, according to CCB data, compared to 23% across all sectors, and with more than half (51%) planning to pursue M&A in the next year in order to sustain growth.
According to Ravid, M&A activity is increasingly becoming a key lever for growth as businesses look to recover.
“To position themselves for future revenue growth, tech companies are now adjusting their M&A strategy to focus more on a target’s business resilience, digital technology alignment and to gain market share through consolidation,” says Ravid.
However, with an increasingly competitive deal market and ongoing geopolitical tensions, the majority of tech execs expect to see more competition in the bidding process for assets over the next year, primarily from private capital.