High growth industries
Whether you're looking to innovate on old ideas or build something new, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in industries with exciting futures. We looked at some of the most promising industries with impressive growth prospects. Here are the five fast-growing markets to consider.
Driven by its promise to enable better informed decision making and boost efficiency (and, in turn, profits) the AI industry is poised for explosive growth. While it's often difficult to pin down exactly what the AI industry encompasses and projections differ depending on the source, Statista estimates the AI industry will grow from less than $1.4 billion in value in 2016 to more than $16 billion by 2021. That would represent a massive compound annual growth rate of 63.78 percent.
Lindsey Vontz, content marketing manager for graphic design crowdsourcing platform 99Designs, said mixed reality projects were among the fastest growing categories on the platform in recent years. She said startups in need of design services are most commonly found in the cities of San Francisco, Los Angeles, London, New York and Santa Monica.
"Really, I think, it's Oculus Rift and some other technologies becoming more mainstream, so we're seeing a lot of VR studios, labs and gaming studios," Vontz said.
Initial coin offerings (ICOs) exploded both in number and funding value through 2017. According to CoinDesk, from January 2014 through 2016, the largest single month for new ICO funding was July 2016, when ICOs raised about $155 million. Through 2017 (excluding December, for which data was not yet available,) seven months eclipsed that number; the highest grossing month was November, where ICOs raised more than $743 million.
Vontz said 99Designs has seen a boost in projects related to the cryptocurrency industry. Crypto mining sites, exchanges, and investment tools were among the most common types of projects on the platform, and those were most commonly located in the cities of New York, San Francisco, London, Austin and Toronto.
Because of the promise of lowered costs and greater efficiency in fabrication and manufacturing, especially as the technology evolves, the industry has been growing steadily in recent years. The research group Markets and Markets expects the 3D printing industry to grow to $32.78 billion by 2023.
99Designs also tracked a spike in cannabis-related projects, particularly for dispensaries, infused products, delivery services and vape brands. Cannabis startups in need of design services were most commonly located in the cities of Los Angeles, Portland, Denver, San Francisco and New York, said Vontz.
"It should be really interesting to look at [the industry's growth] between 2017 and 2018," she said. "My hunch is it will skyrocket."