The word ‘disruption’ comes with some unfavourable associations. After all, the dictionary definition refers to a “disturbance or problems which interrupt an event, activity, or process”. It has all the connotations of a bad guest or an unwanted intrusion.
But, in recent years, we’ve begun to see disruption through the same lens as innovation; as a way of reinventing markets, products and services, of streamlining systems, of eking out new opportunities and of improving the way we interact with the world.
Some of these disruptors are in our lives, in our homes and in our work places right now, and their tendrils run long and deep. Consider the impact of the internet, digital innovations, social media and mobile. All of these are game changers which have impacted industries as diverse as healthcare, banking, tourism and the automotive sector. Groundbreaking innovations are just around the corner or already here, such as blockchain and the Internet of Things. Doubtless new concepts and buzzwords will emerge on an almost daily basis.
These disruptors fundamentally change the way companies do business, and they certainly change how we navigate the world of global investing. It makes our job more complex but more exciting, more challenging but more expansive, and it highlights the importance of flexibility and ever deeper market understanding.
In this edition of Global Perspectives we look at how India has harnessed the power of digital disruption to drive a revolution, led by the concerted efforts of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to advance the use of electronic payments. We visit China, a market of contrasts and opportunities, and outline our unique investment approach and why it works.
On a broader note, Corneleo Keevy takes a look at the role of private debt in alternative asset allocations, as investors increasingly respond to global disruptions by diversifying away from traditional-only approaches in their search for yield.
“Consider the impact of the internet, digital innovations, social media and mobile. All of these are game changers which have impacted industries as diverse as healthcare, banking, tourism and the automotive sector.”
Perhaps one of the most significant sectors impacted by technology and changing global mind-sets is the energy industry. From renewables to electric cars, this sector is evolving at pace and understanding the ramifications of these changes – and the speed at which they are happening – is vital. We have two articles exploring this topic, an assessment of old and new power generation methods and opportunities by Richard Robinson, while Paul Clark provides insights into the enormous growth witnessed in the East African electricity sector in recent years.