The 9 most popular sectors for start-ups

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A successful small business is within reach of almost anyone who wants to take a risk and work hard. And some of the best start-up opportunities are in emerging sectors, where savvy entrepreneurs can reap the benefits of high demand and early entry into a booming market.

Let’s explore nine fast-growing industries where you can get your start-up journey off to a flying start.

1. Construction
The Australian Department of Industry, Innovation and Science identifies built environment and construction as one of the nation’s fastest growing industries. Recent Department research reveals that as the sector becomes increasingly global, Australia’s design expertise and proximity to Asia provide an opportunity for start-ups to tap into the resource scarcity and growing affluence of the region.

With residential, commercial, industrial and institutional construction booming, the sector boasts high demand for design, building, and material supply services. Many businesses are already seizing this opportunity, including those in the architectural services, engineering consultancy, and survey and data mapping industries.

2. Artificial intelligence
Artificial intelligence features in everything from voice-recognition programs to virtual assistants like Siri and Cortana. While not a new concept, it will continue to boom as consumers increasingly embrace work and lifestyle technology. Bank of America Merrill Lynch predicts AI analytical research will be a $70 billion market by 2020 (up from $8.2 billion in 2014).

3. Fraud detection
Increasing cyber-attacks mean fraud detection is in huge demand globally. Businesses of all sizes (and consumers) can benefit from a cyber-security expert, so there’s a wealth of business-to-business potential for start-ups in this field. The industry is expanding rapidly, boasting annual growth of 24.6 per cent from 2011 to 2016, according to IBISWorld.

4. Online retail
Thanks to sites like eBay, Gumtree and Amazon, it’s easier and cheaper than ever for retailers to sell goods to a global customer base, without the need for a bricks and mortar outlet. IBISWorld reports that in Australia, the e-commerce industry generates an annual revenue of $18 billion. In the US, the industry generates $394 billion annually.

5. Wearable technology
We’ve grown to rely on technology, with most of us carrying smartphones everywhere we go. We track our steps, read news articles and connect with people on social media. From calorie-counting sports watches to app-enabled baby monitors, countless ideas are succeeding in this industry, which experts predict will be worth $34.61 billion by 2020.

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6. Health
With the lightning fast advances in health care technology and services, business opportunities in the sector are booming. Start-ups are improving health care by offering services like digital doctor’s appointment booking, in-home care mobile pharmacy ordering and medical equipment hire. The industry currently generates a staggering $1.668 trillion in annual revenue globally.

7. Education
Education technology is also booming. Innovators are working to make education affordable and available to everyone across the globe through videos, webinars, educational platforms and online courses. Given that like health care, education affects everyone, innovative products and services in these sectors are poised to have huge impacts on society – much more so than any other industries.

8. Pet care
Australia has one of the highest pet ownership rates in the world. We collectively spend around $12 billion a year on pets, with our shrinking backyards and busy lifestyles leading to a pet care industry boom.

The traditional pet industry is getting a makeover. The internet, apps and mobile devices make it easier for businesses involved in pet sitting, grooming, walking, training, and boarding to reach customers, streamline processes and scale their operations.

Australians now expect to buy pet care products and services online, which means there’s countless opportunities to start new ventures in e-commerce, including offering subscription packages and connected devices like pet wearables. The worldwide pet wearables market alone will be worth $2.6 billion by 2019, market research firm IDTechEx predicts.

9. Wellbeing
Meditation has hit the mainstream as a way to cope with stress and improve focus, productivity and relaxation. So it’s no surprise that major Australian employers are spending more on corporate wellness programs.

As companies embrace the idea that employee mental health is directly tied to performance, many now offer benefits that help improve focus and alleviate stress. Companies already offering meditation training at work include NAB, Victoria Police, Diabetes Australia, Origin Energy, and the CEO Institute.

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5 more great cash flow articles for you to read:
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2. Cash flow problems and solutions
3. How to secure a small business grant
4. Small business = big economic impact
5. Does accounting software improve cash flow?

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