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27 Emerging Industries and Promising Startup Opportunities

In the dynamic landscape of startups, founders and CEOs are at the forefront of identifying and capitalizing on emerging industries and trends. From leveraging personal branding to reducing food waste with innovative technology, we’ve gathered 27 expert insights to spotlight opportunities ripe for entrepreneurial ventures.

  • Leverage Personal Branding for Startups
  • Digitize Construction with Digital Twinning
  • Revolutionize Learning with Neural Interfaces
  • Contribute to Medical Tourism Growth
  • Make Advancements in Cybersecurity
  • Innovate with Mind-Controlled VR Content
  • Pioneer Eco-Experiential Tourism
  • Create Niche Custom GPTs
  • Transform Online Shopping with Virtual Commerce
  • Facilitate Micro-Entrepreneurship for Professionals
  • Necessitate Sustainable Energy Solutions
  • Capitalize on Crypto Tech Opportunities
  • Specialize in AI Prompt Engineering
  • Reshape Digitally in the Web3 Space
  • Invest in Climate Technology Startups
  • Tap Into Green Finance and Investing
  • Meet Demand for EV Charging Solutions
  • Explore Opportunities in Space-Tech Industry
  • Harness AI for Cross-Industry Innovation
  • Tailor Data Science Solutions for Industries
  • Initiate Urban Regenerative Design Projects
  • Develop User-Friendly Digital Banking Services
  • Expand Global Talent with Offshore Hiring
  • Automate Processes in the Food Industry
  • Shift to Advanced Battery and Energy Storage
  • Disrupt Legal Needs with Lawtech
  • Reduce Food Waste with Innovative Tech

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Leverage Personal Branding for Startups

Building in public and creating a personal brand as a startup founder is a trend with significant potential. As a startup, it can be tough to compete against bigger competitors with larger marketing and recruiting budgets. 

By authentically sharing learnings from your journey on LinkedIn, you can generate millions of organic content impressions and thousands of profile views for yourself and your startup. This can help you attract top talent, customers, partners, and investors. The startups whose executives embrace personal branding and building in public will see success in 2024 and beyond.

Matt Parkin, Founder, Mornings With Matt Consulting

Digitize Construction with Digital Twinning

Construction ranks among the least digitized sectors, still relying on manual processes predating modern computing. Yet, crumbling infrastructure now threatens economic and climate progress alike.

Enter digital twinning—data-rich virtual replicas of buildings, systems, or even entire cities optimized virtually first. These living digital replicas enable testing countless microgrid configurations, retrofit ideas, or mobility flow tweaks without the risks of physical deployment.

And the benefits cascade once implemented in the real world. Seamlessly embedding sensor arrays and IoT connectivity lays the groundwork for self-adjusting spaces that continuously tune themselves to usage patterns, energy demands, and changing conditions.

The startup potential resides in building turnkey digital twinning platforms, democratizing access to modernization intelligence for owners of decaying buildings worldwide.

Lukas Berezowiec, Founder CEO, NoTriangle Studio

Revolutionize Learning with Neural Interfaces

Neural interface technology blended with AI is revolutionizing how we process information and learn. Imagine a world where learning a new language or mastering a complex skill happens in a fraction of the time it currently takes. 

For example, a neural interface could directly feed information to the brain, making the process of learning a language as simple as downloading a software update. Another fascinating use case is in the field of creative arts. Artists and designers could conceptualize and create digital art directly from their thoughts, bypassing traditional physical interfaces. 

As the CEO of a content marketing agency, I see a big impact on our industry; a content marketer equipped with this technology could drastically enhance their creative process. They could generate ideas and visualize campaigns directly from their thoughts, seamlessly integrating AI-generated insights and data-driven strategies. This technology would make creating content faster and allow marketers to produce more unique and specific content for different audiences quickly. Just like that, this thought process “on steroids” can enhance almost any industry we can think of.

Itay Malinski, Founder and CEO, AlohaDigital


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Contribute to Medical Tourism Growth

Medical tourism is a rapidly growing industry offering significant opportunities for startups. This trend, driven by factors like the high cost of healthcare in certain countries, long wait times for procedures, and the ease of international travel, is expanding beyond elective surgeries to more complex medical treatments. Patients are increasingly traveling to countries like Thailand, India, or Costa Rica for high-quality medical care at a fraction of the cost they would incur in their home countries.

Startups have a unique opportunity to innovate in this space by providing facilitation services, which include helping patients navigate foreign healthcare systems, coordinating travel and accommodations, and offering post-treatment care. Moreover, there’s a burgeoning market for technology-driven solutions like telemedicine platforms for pre- and post-treatment consultations, apps for virtual hospital tours, and real-time communication tools with healthcare providers. This industry not only offers significant business potential but also contributes to the globalization of healthcare, making quality medical services accessible to a broader population.

Sanamdeep Singh, CEO, Envoy Health

Make Advancements in Cybersecurity

One emerging industry that has significant potential for startups in 2024 is cybersecurity and privacy. As digital threats become more sophisticated, the demand for cybersecurity solutions is only going to continue to increase. Startups that offer advanced cybersecurity technologies, privacy-focused tools, and data protection solutions are likely to find a receptive market in the coming years, especially with the rise of remote work and digital transformation across industries. 

I know for my business, this is something I am taking extremely seriously, especially considering I collect personal data from my customers and users. My team and I have already taken steps to bolster our security by implementing an incident response plan in the event of a cybersecurity breach.

Mathias Johansen, Co-Founder and COO, Guide2Fluency

Innovate with Mind-Controlled VR Content

The convergence of neurotechnology and immersive experiences to develop personalized, mind-controlled virtual reality (VR) content is an undiscovered and incredibly unique opportunity for startups. Startups can design systems that allow users to explore and interact within virtual environments using their thoughts by exploiting improvements in brain-computer interfaces (BCIs). 

This groundbreaking technology has the potential to be employed in a variety of fields, including gaming, education, therapy, and even artistic expression. Consider a firm that pioneers mind-controlled virtual reality games, in which users may affect their environment exclusively through neural signals, allowing for unparalleled levels of immersion and agency in the virtual domain. 

This novel method not only capitalizes on the burgeoning interest in neurotechnology but also opens up new possibilities for the future of entertainment and human-computer interaction.

Laila Kaikavoosi, Founder and Clinical Director, Online Menopause Centre


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Pioneer Eco-Experiential Tourism

One emerging industry with significant potential for startups that stands out due to its uniqueness is “Eco-Experiential Tourism.” This innovative trend combines two booming sectors: sustainable tourism and virtual reality (VR) technology.

Eco-Experiential Tourism focuses on creating immersive and sustainable travel experiences that not only minimize the environmental footprint but also maximize the emotional and educational impact on travelers. Startups in this space can offer eco-friendly adventures that are augmented or even entirely replaced by virtual reality.

For instance, a startup might develop a VR platform that allows users to explore remote and pristine natural destinations without physically traveling there. They could partner with conservation organizations to ensure a portion of their revenue goes towards protecting these ecosystems. These virtual journeys could offer interactive educational experiences, such as wildlife tracking, ecosystem simulations, or even direct participation in conservation efforts.

Moreover, Eco-Experiential Tourism can provide travelers with the opportunity to offset their carbon footprint through sustainable initiatives, making each virtual journey a positive contributor to environmental conservation. This combination of environmental responsibility and immersive technology offers a unique blend of adventure and eco-consciousness, making it a standout trend for startups looking to make a significant impact on the travel and sustainability sectors.

Albert Varkki, Co-Founder, Von Baer

Create Niche Custom GPTs

Custom GPTs are the emerging trend that will take off in the coming months. OpenAI will soon open the marketplace to the general public, and it will be a game-changer. 

To leverage this opportunity, startups need to create the most popular GPTs related to their niche. This will give them marketing opportunities that will help them drive traffic and increase revenue. Since you’ll be creating a GPT, you don’t need to be an expert in coding or AI. Just give detailed prompts to your GPT and watch it create endless content on the topic.

Burak Özdemir, Founder, onlinealarmkur.com


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Transform Online Shopping with Virtual Commerce

Isn’t “Try Before You Buy” just an awesome way to make shopping easy and confident? Absolutely! People enjoy trying stuff out before they actually decide to buy it. Here is where virtual commerce and retail can set a new standard for interactive and personalized shopping experiences.

Online shopping is constrained to visualizing products through limited images and descriptions, but virtual commerce and retail change that. They let you immerse potential customers in interactive experiences, making online shopping way more interesting. Coming up with an idea like this could totally shake up the market. Some startups, like Obsess, Vertebrae, Matterport, and others, are already doing a great job in this space.

Varun Mukhi, Co-Founder, Scoop Global

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Facilitate Micro-Entrepreneurship for Professionals

In 2024, an emerging trend for startups involves promoting micro-entrepreneurship during brief breaks amid a reduction in work-from-home opportunities. As professionals return to offices, the challenge of starting side hustles persists. 

An opportunity lies in creating platforms that facilitate short networking sessions or collaborative moments during lunch breaks, enabling individuals to advance their entrepreneurial projects within limited time frames, preparing for future resource deployment.

Andrew Chung, Founder, Best Cafe Designs

Necessitate Sustainable Energy Solutions

The push toward sustainable and renewable energy sources is more than a trend; it’s a necessity. Startups focusing on innovative solar, wind, or alternative energy solutions have tremendous growth potential. 

For instance, developing affordable solar panels or battery-storage systems for residential and commercial use could revolutionize how we consume energy.

Julian Patrick, Founder, Stovefitter’s Warehouse

Capitalize on Crypto Tech Opportunities

Crypto Tech is a growing trend in the financial technology sector, and I really see it as a huge opportunity for startups. Digital currencies and blockchain technology are gaining momentum, and startups can really make the most of this trend.

The tech behind cryptocurrencies is changing more than just the finance world. It’s making waves in areas like healthcare and environmental sectors too. Sure, there are challenges, but the constant innovation in this field promises to make transactions smoother and cheaper, which is great for both businesses and customers all over the world. We’re in the middle of a digital revolution, and cryptocurrencies and blockchain are leading the charge.

Take our company, Bitinvestor, for example. We jumped on this trend a few years back, seeing the need for better, more rewarding cryptocurrency trading platforms. The digital currency market today is driven by the private sector, which has both the resources and the drive to keep innovating and developing. This means we’re likely to see ongoing improvements in performance and flexibility, which will probably extend to all kinds of financial exchanges in the future.

Thomas Franklin, CEO and Co-Founder, Bitinvestor


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Specialize in AI Prompt Engineering

Prompt engineering is an emerging field with vast potential for startups, especially in the AI sector. It involves crafting inputs that effectively guide AI responses, turning it into a critical skill as businesses seek to leverage AI technology. 

For example, a startup specializing in prompt engineering can revolutionize content creation, customer service, or data analysis by enabling more precise, efficient interactions with AI systems. As AI becomes increasingly sophisticated, the demand for skilled prompt engineers is set to rise, presenting a ripe opportunity for innovative ventures.

Jaya Iyer, Marketing Manager, Teranga Digital Marketing LTD

Reshape Digitally in the Web3 Space

The burgeoning Web3 realm offers a transformative opportunity for startups. Central to this is decentralization, fostering a more democratic internet landscape.

With the Web3 market projected to soar from $27.5 billion to $81.5 billion by 2030, startups have fertile ground for innovation, especially in North America. This sector invites fresh ideas in online identity, privacy, and internet usage, presenting a unique chance for entrepreneurs to reshape the digital world with visionary and user-empowering technologies.

Tobias Liebsch, Co-Founder, Fintalent.io

Invest in Climate Technology Startups

The climate technology industry is an emerging trend I see with massive potential for startups. As a technology editor, I have observed an increase in funding towards climate tech startups. 

In the last quarter of 2023, I have been reading through the amount of venture capital investments in startups. Most of the investments—nearly $1 billion in the third quarter of 2023—went to carbon and emissions reduction tech startups. Heading into 2024, I believe startups in the areas of green mining and energy-efficient buildings will get more funding and investments from venture capitalists.

 

I think investment in clean energy is beneficial in meeting the growing energy demands to deal with climate change. Having the surest path to clean energy presents a good opportunity for climate change technology startups to boost investments.

Bobby Lawson, Technology Editor/Publisher, Earth Web

Tap Into Green Finance and Investing

As environmental concerns and the push for sustainability gain momentum globally, investors are increasingly seeking environmentally responsible opportunities. Startups focusing on renewable energy, eco-friendly technologies, and sustainable practices can tap into the growing demand for green investments. 

For instance, companies developing innovative solutions in renewable energy storage, carbon capture technologies, or sustainable agriculture could attract substantial funding. The transition towards a more sustainable economy is creating a favorable environment for startups that align their business models with environmental, social, and governance (ESG) principles, making green finance a noteworthy area for entrepreneurial endeavors.

James Parker, Co-Founder, LEONID

Meet Demand for EV Charging Solutions

There’s a lot of demand for EV chargers.

The production of electric cars is outpacing the number of charging plugs available. For example, New York City is currently 40,000 charging plugs behind demand, and I believe this is a massive opportunity for startups.

If a startup can find a way to produce quality charging ports at an affordable price and place them all around big cities like New York City and Los Angeles, it can corner the market and bring in big profits.

For example, a startup called ItsElectric is partnering with residential buildings to install curbside charging, helping drivers without a garage charge their electric cars.

Scott Lieberman, Owner, Touchdown Money

Explore Opportunities in Space-Tech Industry

One emerging industry with significant potential for startups is the space-tech industry. With private companies like SpaceX leading a new wave of innovation in space exploration and technology, I believe there is ample room for startups to make an impact as well.

The declining costs of launching rockets and satellites are creating opportunities that simply didn’t exist 10 or 20 years ago. Small teams can now access space in ways that were previously only possible for large aerospace companies and governments. This allows startups to provide new products and services in areas like Earth observation, space tourism, satellite broadband internet, and more.

Additionally, the new commercial focus on space is attracting more venture capital funding and partnerships. NASA even has startup accelerators now to help bring new ideas to market. With more access to capital and resources, space-tech startups can get to market faster.

In general, I see the entrepreneurial spirit of startups as a great match for the pioneering nature of the space industry. While there are still major technological hurdles, smart and scrappy startups can find niche opportunities that more risk-averse large corporations may overlook. The next SpaceX-like success story could very well come from the startup world.

Trevor Hamilton, Founder, The Story Web

Harness AI for Cross-Industry Innovation

I think one trend that stands out with immense potential for startups is the integration of Artificial Intelligence (AI). This trend isn’t just a fleeting wave; it’s a seismic shift that’s reshaping how we approach technology and business. 

AI technology is revolutionizing everything from healthcare to finance with smarter, more efficient ways to handle complex tasks, and its ability to analyze vast amounts of data rapidly and accurately is a key advantage. This isn’t just about processing power; it’s about AI’s unique capability to learn and adapt over time, which, in my opinion, makes it an invaluable asset for any startup looking to innovate. With that in mind, one example could be AI processing patient data to help doctors make more informed decisions, leading to more effective and personalized healthcare solutions. 

In retail, AI could be used to analyze customer data and offer highly personalized shopping experiences, recommending products that align with individual preferences and past purchasing behavior. Sustainability is another area where AI can make an impact, by developing sustainable business practices, from optimizing energy use to reducing waste. When you look closely, the possibilities really are endless for startups willing to embrace this technology.

Shane McEvoy, MD, Flycast Media


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Tailor Data Science Solutions for Industries

From my perspective, Data Science stands out as an emerging industry full of opportunities for startups.

The beauty of data science lies in its applicability across various industries. With robust demand cutting across sectors like finance, healthcare, marketing, and technology, startups can strategically position themselves by tailoring data solutions to the unique needs of these diverse fields.

Take, for instance, the growth of moving companies. Data science proves to be a transformative force by optimizing routes and logistics. It can even distill valuable insights on moving trends, such as understanding moving costs in specific areas. Interestingly, this is precisely the focus area my company is currently involved in.

In the era where information holds a value akin to gold, data science assumes the role of mining, uncovering precious insights and trends.

Ryan Carrigan, CEO and Founder, moveBuddha

Initiate Urban Regenerative Design Projects

One emerging industry with a huge potential for sustainability-focused real estate startups is regenerative design applied to urban development. It’s still in the very early stages, so it’s the perfect time for startups to jump in and initiate this revolutionary approach to creating communities that minimize environmental impact and actively contribute to ecosystem health and resilience.

It’s an exciting business idea where startups could combine restoration, community, local food systems, and technology all at the same time. An Urban Food Forest is not a utopia anymore; it’s the present. You can collaborate with the city council and the community to transform vacant lots into thriving urban food forests where you design and implement vertical farms, community gardens, and pollinator-friendly landscaping, providing fresh produce, educational opportunities, and habitat restoration for local wildlife.

Colin Hannan, Principal, Proven Partners


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Develop User-Friendly Digital Banking Services

One trend I see a lot of potential in is digital banking services in the FinTech industry. As technology becomes more involved with finance, I’ve observed the growing demand for user-friendly and innovative digital solutions. Startups can capitalize on this by offering streamlined, mobile-friendly banking experiences—something modern consumers are looking for. 

For instance, startups can develop an intuitive mobile application that combines banking services with personal finance management, like PayPal or Venmo, but with more and better management features. With this, they can leverage the evolving needs of individuals for convenient, tech-savvy financial solutions.

Joe Chappius, Financial Planner, Tax Climate

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Expand Global Talent with Offshore Hiring

Offshore hiring has been moving into the startup mainstream for over a decade. Still, there is a lot of growth left for the practice. New platforms providing EOR and contractor payment services have made this a much simpler proposition for small businesses and startups. I believe we have only scratched the surface of specialized recruiters finding great talent pockets all over the world.

Trevor Ewen, COO, QBench

Automate Processes in the Food Industry

The use of robotics and automation in the food industry is on the rise. Startups are developing robots and automated systems to streamline processes such as food preparation, cooking, packaging, and delivery. These technologies not only improve efficiency and reduce labor costs but also enhance food safety and hygiene. 

For example, robots can be used in food processing plants to handle delicate tasks or in restaurants to automate repetitive tasks like burger-flipping. With the advancements in robotics and automation, startups have the opportunity to revolutionize the way food is produced and served.

Simranjeet Singh, CEO, Search My Expert

Shift to Advanced Battery and Energy Storage

Before I became a founder, I spent over five years at Tesla. One emerging industry with significant potential for startups is the field of sustainable energy solutions, particularly in areas like battery technology and energy storage. 

As the world shifts towards renewable energy sources, there’s a growing need for efficient, cost-effective ways to store and manage this energy. That’s why I invest in startups that are working to solve for this. 

A specific area of opportunity within this field is the development of advanced battery technologies. These can range from solid-state batteries, which offer higher energy density and safety, to novel materials and designs that extend battery life and reduce environmental impact. Startups focusing on these areas can contribute to the broader adoption of renewable energy by making it more practical and accessible. 

A really exciting area is software solutions that optimize energy usage and storage, integrating with smart-grid technologies. These present a lucrative area for innovation for teams with the right skill set. This includes intelligent systems for managing energy flow in homes and businesses, optimizing the use of renewable sources, and reducing waste. 

The intersection of these technologies with electric vehicles and other sectors also opens up further avenues for startups to explore and innovate. Tesla is leading the way, but there’s lots of room for entrepreneurs who know how to build strong teams and secure funding to share in this rising tide.

Inge Von Aulock, CEO, Top Apps

Disrupt Legal Needs with Lawtech

One trend that can impact startups is Lawtech. This is a potentially disruptive solution that can enable startups, smaller businesses, and individuals to self-serve for their legal needs. It sounds great in theory; however, there is much to be explored with this technology. I don’t think it should be used as a replacement for legal professionals, but then I would say that, wouldn’t I? 

In all seriousness, though, there are certain times when a human lawyer is needed to bring their education, experience, and expertise to the table. However, where Lawtech could be helpful is with automation and administration. You would be surprised at how much of a lawyer’s life is taken up with admin. 

Being able to reduce time spent on those responsibilities could enable lawyers to concentrate their efforts where they’re most needed, driving costs down for startups and allowing them to access legal support in a more affordable way.

Martin Gasparian, Attorney and Owner, Maison Law

Reduce Food Waste with Innovative Tech

Food waste reduction is another area of opportunity for startups in the food industry. With the growing concern about sustainability, startups are developing innovative solutions to tackle food waste throughout the supply chain. This includes technologies such as smart sensors that monitor freshness and shelf life, apps that connect consumers with discounted or surplus food, and platforms that facilitate food donation and redistribution. By addressing the issue of food waste, startups can contribute to a more sustainable and efficient food system.

Josh Ladick, President, GSA Focus

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