Late November marks the time of the year when most commentators – your author included – pen their annual outlook pieces. We have been thinking and writing about the future for the last decade and this week saw the release of our tenth annual outlook piece (for interested parties, our very first one can be viewed here). In recognition of the time constraints under which we all find ourselves, this week’s Blog post can be seen either as saving readers time or, more optimistically, piquing their interest to read more: below follow the ten top pieces of trivia (in your author’s opinion) from this year’s theme piece. Each is accompanied by a hopefully handy implication too.
Humans produce over 1.3bn tonnes of garbage annually. This is equivalent to over 3,500 Empire State Buildings (per the World Bank). Conclusion: we need better recycling solutions and better alternatives to plastic.
We waste the same amount (1.3bn tonnes) of food annually. This is equivalent to around a third of all food that is produced for human consumption (per the United Nations). Conclusion: we need better food storage solutions.
Nearly 700m people are under-nourished, but at the same time, 2bn adults are either overweight or obese (per the World Economic Forum). Conclusion: private sector businesses and governments have a clear role to play in driving better access to food and healthcare.
There are around 5 connected devices per person on the planet today, but this figure will rise to over 40 per person by 2030 (per IDC). Conclusion: the ‘data deluge’ (a phrase we first coined in 2011) is showing no signs of slowing down.
New cars contain over 200m lines of code and more than 100 controllers (per Aptiv). Conclusion: cars are becoming data centres on wheels; they will be the biggest ‘thing’ in the Internet of Things.
$2.9m of losses occur every minute of the day as a result of cybercrime (per the World Economic Forum). Conclusion: data have no value unless they are secured, stored and analysed.
90% of all new energy projects developed in 2021 and 2022 will be green (per the IEA). Conclusion: renewable energy will become an increasingly important part of the mix. The future will be SWB (solar, wind and batteries).
$120tr of cumulative investment will be required globally by 2050 to reach countries’ currently stated renewable energy targets (per Bloomberg NEF). Conclusion: there should be a massive capex tailwind for the renewable energy industry.
140m square feet of new warehouse space will need to be built in the US in the next five years (per Prologis). Conclusion: the growth in online retail combined with an increased need for inventory build is driving a capex boom in industrial real estate.
We will likely experience more technological progress in the next decade than we did in the preceding 100 years put together (per McKinsey). Conclusion: even if technology is just a means to an end, it’s hard not to be optimistic about the future.
The above does not constitute investment advice and is the sole opinion of the author at the time of publication. Heptagon Capital is an investor in Aptiv and Prologis. The author of this piece has no personal direct investment in the business. Past performance is no guide to future performance and the value of investments and income from them can fall as well as rise.
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