- On July 25, 2021
This New York Times article explains how Silicon Valley has profited from the pandemic: “As the world reeled, tech titans supplied the tools that made life and work possible.” In contrast, the businesses the pandemic hurt – restaurants, airlines, conferences, department stores, film, entertainment complexes – are not the mainstay of Silicon Valley.
Here, the tech companies powering remote work and payments have grown: “Silicon Valley made the tools that allowed Americans, and the American economy, to survive the pandemic. People got their jigsaw puzzles, air purifiers and digital thermometers delivered by Amazon instead of picking them up two blocks or two miles away. The consumer economy swerved from local to national.” As a result, the “combined stock market valuation of Apple, Alphabet, Nvidia, Tesla, Microsoft, Amazon and Facebook increased by about 70% to more than $10 trillion.” One director of an investment firm aptly says: “Call it half luck — being in the right place at the right time — and half strategic tactics by companies recognizing this was going to be a once in a lifetime opportunity… What for most industries were hurricane-like headwinds was a pot of gold for tech.” And life sciences/health tech companies have remained strong.
Busier businesses have generated more legal work. For example, M&A activity, which requires significant legal resources, is at record levels: “The pandemic gave tech companies the power and the cash to make aggressive bets on their individual destinies. Buying another company was one way to do this. Global deal values in tech soared 47.3% in 2020 from a year ago.” The demand for technology may slow later but will not go away, and the same for the demand for lawyers.