In a world where the traditional way of conducting business has been disrupted for most of the year, companies for the most part appear to have adapted well to the prevailing environment. This is certainly evidenced from the volume and value of financing transactions and partnership deals that have been completed; records have been set, far outpacing what had been previously established during a normal 12-month period. At the last count, with over a month to go before the end of the year, global private and public companies had raised more than $116 billion, smashing the current annual record of just over $68 billion in 2015. In addition, the transactional value of deals to date have hit a total of $160 billion.

Given the way that companies have pivoted to conduct and close business deals in a virtual environment, BioWorld conducted a short poll to determine readers’ own experiences during these challenging times and how they believed this new normal might reshape their approach to doing business going forward.

Positive experience

Overall, when asked to rate their experience in conducting business virtually on a scale of 5 (good) to 1 (challenging), 64% selected a 4 or 5 rating, with just 8% indicating they had found it challenging.

On the efficiency of conducting business via Zoom rather than face-to-face interactions, 54% of responders indicated that it was positive, 34% indicated it wasn’t efficient and 11% were “unsure.”

BioWorld asked whether readers would continue to conduct business remotely when vaccines become generally available. Interestingly, 46% of responders indicated that they would, while 35% indicated that they wouldn’t.

New roots

From this short poll there is evidence that the sector will not completely go back to its roots when conducting its business going forward in a COVID-19 protected world. Many executives believe that there will be fewer in-person meetings going forward, with companies taking advantage of their Zoom experiences to reduce the amount of traveling to attend meetings.

With Pfizer Inc. and Moderna Inc. reporting this week that they are nearing applying for emergency use authorization (EUA) for their mRNA vaccines, BioWorld will check in with readers again to determine if their views on doing business remain the same once these vaccines have been widely distributed.

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