According to May 2019 figures from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), approximately 3.4 million people voluntarily left their jobs in March of 2019. Many of these former employees made the choice to leave corporate America to pursue their own entrepreneurial ambitions.
Are you thinking of doing the same this year? If so, which business opportunities stand out as good possibilities for your new business? Knowing more about some of the new and emerging high-growth industries can help you pinpoint where to direct your entrepreneurial efforts.
Here is a quick look at some of the opportunities available to intrepid entrepreneurs this year.
1. Cannabidiol Products
As cannabis becomes legal in more states, the demand for recreational and medicinal use continues to skyrocket. According to a report by Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics, worldwide legal cannabis spending is expected to hit an all-time high of $16.9 billion in 2019, which represents a whopping 38 percent increase over 2018 spending.
While dispensaries and recreational shops are selling many products, including strains of marijuana, there are advantages to focusing on cannabinoids.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is a natural component of cannabis and hemp and has been shown to have major health benefits, including pain relief, anti-inflammatory properties, and anxiety reduction capabilities.
Cannabidiol can be found in many products, from oils, soaps, and lotions to coffees, ice creams, and sweet treats. Companies and restaurant chains are entering the CBD space to offer a wider range of foods and non-edible products in the near future.
While 47 states, Puerto Rico, and Washington, D.C. have legalized some CBD products, not everything is legal in each state, so it will be important for entrepreneurs in this space to confirm legality before moving forward with their business plans.
2. Food on the Move
Americans are hungry, and always eager to explore with their tastebuds. That is why new, unique, and trendy food services are so popular in communities large and small.
There are many options available to entrepreneurial foodies. Food trucks are popular both in big cities with lots of office buildings and smaller municipalities. Want to feed the lunch crowd in a downtown business district, or share your great new recipe at a street fair? With a food truck, an entrepreneur can move to where the consumers are, rather than waiting for them to come to the business. According to Food Truck Nation, food trucks are currently active in over 300 cities in the U.S., and revenue has increased by 300 percent over the last three years.
Online food subscription services that deliver a new variation on a product each month are also increasingly popular. According to Statistica data, direct-to-door meal service kit delivery alone is projected to grow to approximately $20 billion in revenue by 2020, making this a potentially lucrative field for the food-focused entrepreneur.
3. Technology for Babies
Technology for babies may seem like a niche industry, and it is. However, modern new parents accustomed to connected devices and services are looking to buy technology that helps them with child rearing.
The Internet of Things makes it far easier to embed sensors and storage into products that feed data to apps, devices, and other tools. Popular solutions in this space include tools to track fertility, help with breastfeeding, monitor baby movements, and assist little ones in getting to and staying asleep.
Technology has gotten less expensive for creators and consumers alike. That said, securing venture capital for these projects has proven not to be child’s play. Nevertheless, if you have technical and marketing expertise, this opportunity is nothing to cry at.
4. 3D Printing
By 2024, the global market for 3D printing is projected to reach $34.8 billion with a compound annual growth rate of 23.3 percent. Whether it is forks and knives, auto parts, or a new shelf for your bedroom closet, 3D printing technology has come a long way quickly.
3D printing is likely to shift from being a largely industry-focused sector to one that is increasingly in the consumer space. On-demand 3D printing can make the right entrepreneur a lifesaver for customers desperate to repair a table leg or a bicycle part.
5. Selfies 2.0
Selfies are the common way in which people, especially groups of people, have their picture taken. Today, there are new tools available that allow for better quality photos and great experiences. These technical but simple-to-use solutions allow users more control of their shots and allow more people to be included comfortably.
For business conferences and conventions, high school and college reunions, wedding receptions, and community events, selfie services are a high-demand and popular inclusion.
There are some start-up costs associated with these businesses. Entrepreneurs in this space will need to have reliable photographic and video equipment and software that delivers pictures and videos to participants and popular social media outlets. For those with software development skills, this emerging business idea might be intriguing.
6. Personal Coaching
Entrepreneurs with great people skills may find their niche in personal coaching services, an industry picked by Entrepreneur as a high-growth industry in 2019. According to MarketResearch.com, this $1 billion industry is expected to see average yearly growth of 6.7 percent, a healthy, steady growth rate by most industry standards.
The International Coaching Federation (ICF) defines coaching as "partnering with clients in a thought-provoking and creative process that inspires them to maximize their personal and professional potential." For entrepreneurs with personal and professional life skills they are willing to share, this industry may be a good fit.
7. Work-leisure Apparel
As more businesses are encouraging employees to keep it casual more often in the office, there has been a growing brand for stylish, yet comfortable clothing options. it may also be the impetus behind the athleisure industry, a term that Merriam-Webster defines as "casual clothing designed to be worn both for exercising and for general use.
That means creating shirts, blouses, slacks, and other clothing items that are appropriate to wear to the office, yet are comfortable and can cross over as exercise apparel. While there are some major commercial competitors in this field, which could make finding distribution channels and retailers more difficult, this space appeals to younger working-age people.
If you have a knack for fashion, design, and retail, creating clothes that are multifaceted could be the right business.
8. Digital Therapeutics
What are digital therapeutics? Think of them as video games as medicine. If you are wearing an activity tracker to count steps taken in a day, using a mobile app to determine your blood pressure, and using a telemedicine platform for a quick diagnosis of symptoms, you are employing digital therapeutics. But this industry goes even further.
Games and software applications are increasingly being used to addresss different medical conditions, manage or prevent a specific disorder or disease, optimize medication and ultimately to treat the disease or disorder. Some even require a doctor’s prescription.
In 2018, the Food and Drug Administration approved 30 apps in digital therapeutics. They are being used to address asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), depression, and pediatric attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
As products in this category are medical devices, there will be FDA testing and safety regulations to address before going to market, so breaking into this market may prove to be difficult; however, if you're technologically savvy, this may be the right business for you.
9. Mixed Reality
Virtual reality devices and applications are not just fun and games anymore. There are ample business applications to mixed reality technology. Companies are relying on the tech to provide simulated training experiences, demonstrate products to customers and prospective buyers, and help service technicians to diagnose and address problems in the field.
The potential market for augmented reality and mixed reality is staggering. MarketsAndMarkets predicts the market could reach $61.4 billion by 2023, up from $2.4 billion in 2016 at a compound annual growth rate of 55.7 percent.
The scope is broad. There are product opportunities in hardware (cameras, displays, projectors, sensors) and software for devices, including handheld and head-mounted tools.
10. Micro Transportation
Uber and Lyft have reinvented the ground transportation industry, causing massive disruption in the taxi and limo industries. There is a completely new opportunity blossoming that appeals to urban residents looking for a faster way to get around without hailing a ride or using buses, trains, and subways.
Microtransportation isn't just automobiles; it also includes electrically powered items like scooters, bikes, and skateboards. This segment, also known as micromobility, provides users with a great way to commute on congested city streets, while it can also be used for recreation and tourism.
There are some concerns with the growing competition in this space, including increasing regulatory scrutiny is also a challenge as cities and towns set guidelines and restrict usage. In some states, e-scooters and e-bikes are illegal.
If you have an engineering background and like to build new things, this could be a great option for your new business, especially as more of the U.S. and world populations choose to live in urban areas.
There are several business models to choose from beyond retail sales. There are rental options, especially in tourist-rich areas. Fleet sales and subscription services are other possibilities.
11. New Retail
Despite the rumors that retail stores are dead, brick-and-mortar locations still have a place in today’s economy. Although their online counterpart has seen a larger growth in sales, physical retail is still experiencing growth, much in part to the new types of retail experiences.
Increasingly, pop-up retail locations (generally brands that operate mostly online), allow for flexibility and bring products to a larger audience, which in turn helps to grow the brand. Personalized retail services, on the other hand, uses analytical data to predict a customer’s preferences. Then, there is growth in personal shopping services, a model intended to cater to busy professionals with lots of discretionary income, or to elderly/infirmed clients who are unable to do the shopping themselves.
Of course, there’s also e-commerce, still a hallmark of entrepreneurial spirit. If you have a product or service that can be shown, shopped, and delivered via a website or app, you may not need that physical storefront after all.
Making the Business a Reality
There are countless ideas for entrepreneurs looking to start their own company in 2019. At Benetrends, we help small-business owners turn those ideas into real businesses.
Benetrends pioneered the use of 401(k)/IRA retirement funds to launch and grow businesses. Our Rollover as Business Start-Ups (ROBS) strategy gives you the cash you need quickly, without early withdrawal penalties or costly loan interest payments. To learn more about how Benetrends can help with your entrepreneurial pursuits, download Innovative Funding Strategies For Entrepreneurs.