Old population creates new opportunities for companies

The world population is changing at various levels. On the one hand, it will grow more than 30% by 2030 (from 6.1 billion in 2000 to 8.1 billion people in 2030), on the other hand, is ageing. A scene that is providing new opportunities for Portuguese companies of footwear with more intent.

Fall in fertility. Increasing the average life expectancy. Ageing global population. These are the three big tendencies in the various demographic diagnoses made on a global scale.

The Institute Demographic of Vienna and the University of the State of New York argue that, by 2030, world population will increase substantially, and the continent of Africa and Asia will be the drivers of that growth. In contrast, in most developed countries, particularly in Europe, will assist a population decline.

Moreover, during this century, the proportion of people aged over 60 will triple, rising from 10% in 2000 to 32% in 2100. In Western Europe, almost half the population (46%) will be over 60 years old. These demographic changes will intensify from 2010 in Europe, North America, China, Japan and Russia and will reach a peak between 2020 and 2030.

This is, therefore, a new reality that society will have to respond to in the shortest time. Because the effect of ageing will have direct impact on the labour market and in the medicine area in the medium term. It should also have an important niche for companies that know how to leverage the new opportunities.

Several companies are already intent to this opportunity. It is the case of Flex & Go, created in 2002. "With the launch of this brand we try to meet the growing need for comfort of a European population that is ageing because of increased life expectancy," said José Domingos.

Also Softinos, brand from Kyaia Group launched last year, seems not to neglect this growing niche market. "We present ourselves to consumers as a brand of comfort that favors the best ways and quality materials, opting for very soft leather, but that is simultaneously very nice on the aesthetic point of view," stressed Fernando Brogueira.

More radical was the bet in the Softwaves. During more than 30 years specialized in the classic lady footwear segment, Comforsyst SA launched the Softwaves. Marcelo Santos explains that “the business model had exhausted”, particularly because “the alterations of weight in the international plan with the appearance of new players”.

Thus, the new brand started to bet “in a customer target global, less sensible to the fashion and that they privilege the well-being and the comfort”. The world is changing and the alterations in course will be able to result in great business opportunities for companies most intent and ready to take the risk.