2022 Predictions from the Pros

As 2021 came to a close, reflecting on the foreseen (and unforeseen) challenges we faced over the previous 365 days was something most did, both on a personal level and a professional one. As is custom, we toasted the end of it, perhaps making resolutions of our own to cope with upcoming struggles while policymakers and game-changers, we hope, did the same for the battles they hope to fight moving forward. 

To that end, the IPBN is proud to share some predictions from our Partners and Members, four of which partnered with us at some of our events in 2021 including the Blue Economy Conference and some of our Tech webinars in both Lisbon and the Algarve. Their predictions range from technology and incubators to tourism and marketing. Perhaps this can help us focus on what is truly important for our personal and our business lives a bit better as we move forward into 2022. 

In the article on Slush.org entitled “How Climate Tech Startups and VCs Can Lead the Fight Against Climate Change,” Leo Johnson of PwC UK took a look at the current carbon crisis’ state of play and offered a few optimistic points regarding increased interest in funding for emerging technologies to battle it. He even offered tips on what exactly VCs are looking for when deciding to invest in climate tech.

According to PwC’s State of Climate Tech 2021 report, increased VC investment is energizing this climate-focused innovation. Johnson writes, “PwC’s 2021 report has identified more than 6,000 unique investors, ranging from VCs, PE, and corporate VCs to angel investors, philanthropists, and government funds. Together, these diverse investors have funded over 3,000 climate tech startups between 2013 and H1 2021, and around 2,500 of them were active between the second half (H2) of 2020 and the first half (H1) of 2021.” That’s good news especially for those in the mobility and transport sectors working on technologies to transition from a fossil-fuel model to a lower- or net-zero economic order. Johnson says that “[this] handful of technology areas [are] seen as ‘safer’ and more certain in terms of returns, [and] are still attracting the majority of early-stage climate tech investment. 

In an interview with Miguel Fontes, Executive Director of Startup Lisboa (SUL) recently posted on the SUL blog, we discovered what the 2021 ecosystem brought with it, what the startup incubator’s role will be in the international ecosystem for entrepreneurs and innovators, and how it plans to celebrate its 10-year anniversary in 2022. Fontes said, “This was also the year in which Portugal reached the number of seven unicorns, which being in itself very significant is, above all, relevant for what it indicates about the quality of the startups that make up our ecosystem. Indeed, for each startup that reaches this valuation, there are many, many others that, even if they are not yet or will never get this level, are still very relevant companies that bring innovation to the market, create wealth, generate skilled employment and, in short, create immense value to the economy and society.” 

Fontes has no doubts that the tenth-anniversary of the incubator program will see a furthering of SUL’s dynamic test and validation space with even more exciting projects capable of bringing big changes to the world stage. He said, “In a market that integrates a common European market, [we will continue to] work…to evaluate product-market fit.”  

Meanwhile, NEST Centro de Inovação do Turismo posted some predictions on Linkedin about the future of the Tourism sector in 2022, pointing out that the skillsets we have developed in 2021 to cope with the pandemic will shape the industry, likely for the better, in the future. They noted that better health and safety regulations coupled with greater flexibility in tour offers will be necessary to attract customers who are nervous about planning too far ahead and risking illness for the sake of travel. They also mentioned that “the process of digitization and the use of new technologies will bring tourists and the sector closer together and allow offer(s) to be increasingly tailored to the client. Lastly, NEST mentioned that, in general, “The restrictions to which tourists were subjected reinforced the desire to live great experiences and make dream trips. The trend in 2022 is that… [which has] has been delayed several times, will be experienced intensely next year.” 

Lastly, the Câmara de Comércio (Portuguese Chamber of Commerce and Industry) presented their 2022 guide to Marketing and Communication trends in their free downloadable e-book entitled, “Tendências de Marketing 2022: A Visão dos Responsáveis de Marketing.” The comprehensive guide is composed of information from 53 contributors from 20 different sectors who shared their personal strategies and offered solutions to problems that might occur or that are already present in the department. The book is available for download by filling a short form here. The book is in Portuguese but luckily, sites like these give us some tips on how to get the gist in our mother tongue for free. 

You can count on the IPBN to follow up and keep you informed on all the challenges outlined above during this new year. So, do join us when you can at any of our events and activities in 2022, and consider joining us as a member to create business liaisons in these sectors and more. A new year of opportunity awaits!