Zoom’s Post-Pandemic Strategy
Selling Videoconferencing Technology to Other Platforms
Over the past year, Zoom (ZM) went from being a relatively unknown company to becoming a household name. The company is now positioning itself for success even after the pandemic subsides.
Yesterday, Zoom announced plans to sell its technology to other companies in a way that would allow them to embed videoconferencing in their platforms. For example, healthcare providers could use the service for virtual visits and social media companies could offer more video chatting options. These calls would be run with Zoom’s technology, but Zoom branding would not be visible to users.
Catering to Business Customers
As it rolls out this service, Zoom will compete directly with Amazon (AMZN), which already offers businesses a way to build videoconferencing into their platforms. Amazon struck a deal with Slack (WORK) last year to incorporate videoconferencing into the popular messaging service. Twilio (TWLO) and Microsoft (MSFT) will also provide competition for Zoom as it launches these new offerings.
Analysts expect that many people who have used Zoom for virtual happy hours, birthday parties, weddings, and other celebrations during the pandemic will not continue to use the service in this way once people can safely gather in person. But Zoom hopes that some people who have used the technology for virtual business meetings during the pandemic will continue to do so.
Zoom has recently added a number of business-specific services to appeal to these customers in the long term. For example, Zoom now allows users to look at documents while staying on calls through a partnership with Dropbox (DBX).
Other Companies Work on Post-COVID Plans
Zoom’s annual sales quadrupled in 2020 to hit $2.65 billion. Its share price has also surged. Zoom’s stock price peaked at $588.84 in October last year, after starting at $65 when the company went public in 2019. At market close yesterday, Zoom’s share price was about $329.
Zoom is not alone in its goal of staying relevant as more people receive COVID-19 vaccines and some patterns of normal daily life begin to return. Companies across a variety of industries, from Etsy (ETSY) to Lowe’s (LOW) to DoorDash (DASH) are also strategizing about their post-pandemic paths after seeing gains during the past year.
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