In a time of global chaos, we outline the steps businesses can take to imagine new scenarios and build future-fit strategies to turn uncertainty into action.

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11 : 03 : 21

Studio Roosegaarde’s inter-Covid urban spaces innovation, Volvo moves car sales to online store and opportunities for food brands in the allergy-free market.

A sanitising streetlight offers hope for public gatherings

Urban Sun by Studio Roosengaarde, The Netherlands
Urban Sun by Studio Roosengaarde, The Netherlands
Urban Sun by Studio Roosengaarde, The Netherlands

Rotterdam – Design agency Studio Roosegaarde is proposing a sanitising streetlight to protect against Covid-19.

Dubbed Urban Sun, the innovation takes inspiration from sunlight and is the result of scientific research into the use of UVC light to effectively sanitise viruses. The concept aims to enhance the safety of meeting others outside during the inter-Covid period – instilling positivity about the future of outdoor gatherings.

According to designer Daan Roosegaarde, Urban Sun could be deployed at public locations like railway stations, schools and plazas for safer social meetings. He says: Suddenly our world is filled with plastic barriers and distance stickers, our family reduced to pixels on a computer screen. Let’s be the architects of our new normal and create better places to meet.’ The first iteration of Urban Sun will be launched alongside the Erasmus Bridge in Rotterdam.

This design innovation also serves as a call to action for businesses and governments to improve the safety of public environments. We have previously spoken to Daan Roosegaarde to find out why clean air should be a key consideration for brands, but the focus is now shifting to hygiene concerns.

Womaness makes holistic menopausal care accessible

Womaness, US Womaness, US
Womaness, US Womaness, US

US – Female wellness brand Womaness has launched a comprehensive line of products to treat menopause in a more holistic way.

The line comprises 13 individual products that soothe symptoms including vaginal dryness, hyper-pigmentation and mood fluctuations. The items range from eye creams to daily supplements for low libido. Womaness is taking a more comprehensive approach to the problems this life stage presents with beauty and sexual wellness products rather than focusing solely on health issues.

With a mission to be as accessible as possible, Womanessprices range from £11 ($14.99, €12.60) to £43.35 ($59.99, €50) to be inclusive of women with varying incomes. The brand has partnered with retailer Target, to ensure Womaness is attainable across the US. ‘It was always part of our strategy to create the best product, but at accessible prices, that’s the intersection we’re really trying to achieve,’ explains Sally Mueller, co-founder of Womaness.

Discover more brands taking an inclusive approach menopausal care in our Rebranding the Menopause market.

Volvo goes DTC with move to online-only sales

Volvo Cars Volvo Cars

UK – Car manufacturer Volvo is switching its operations to online-only selling – a move that will forge direct connections with consumers.

The decision follows Volvo’s announcement to become a fully electric vehicle company by 2030. As part of this new commercial strategy the brand will invest heavily in its digital channels, reduce its product offering and introduce set pricing models.

When buying a car online, customers can purchase from a range of preconfigured electric vehicles in a few steps. A care package containing items such as service, warranty and home charging options will also be made available at purchase.

‘The future of Volvo Cars is defined by three pillars: electric, online and growth,’ comments Lex Kerssemakers, head of global commercial operations. ‘We want to offer our customers peace of mind and a carefree way of having a Volvo, by taking away complexity while getting and driving the car.’

As car-makers shift their priorities beyond face-to-face interactions and traditional showroom experiences, they are working towards a future of Augmenting Automotive Retail.

Stat: Consumers feel anxious shopping for allergy-free foods

Ramen noodles by Immi Ramen noodles by Immi

Over half (51%) of all US consumers are affected by food allergies and food sensitivities, according to research by allergy brand That’s It and marketing platform Suzy.

The survey also reveals that 65% of those with food allergies feel anxious when buying a new food item for the first time. Due to concerns associated with finding appropriate food options, 61% are willing to pay more for products that suit their food sensitivities. And when shopping for allergy-free foods, 69% say that the current product range is limited.

'This new data cements the need for food brands to step up for the food allergy community – both in delivering more inclusive, allergy-free options, and in providing absolute assurance that products are made in completely allergen-free settings,’ says Dr Lior Lewensztain, founder and CEO of That’s It.

With the number of consumers with food allergies surging, there is an opportunity for grocery retailers to step in as dietary advisers by offering in-store nutritional guidance.

Related to Covid-19

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