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Finding opportunities in a crisis

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WHEN life throws you a curveball, catch it. It could mean the difference between succumbing to a business crisis and rising above it with new insights and opportunities. That has been the experience of the four startups featured in Friday's issue of Weekend magazine. From offering innovative software for contactless hotel check-ins, to revving up the production of electric co-sharing vehicles, and even something as basic as selling home storage products, the common thread between these businesses is the way they offer solutions to pandemic-related needs. While they're just a sampling of those that have come out stronger from the crisis, the underlying truism they personify is that every cloud has a silver lining if you keep an eye out for it.

Meanwhile, as the travel industry continues to be battered, there are those who continue to bite the bullet. In Interview, Sonu Shivdasani - founder of the Soneva group of luxury resorts - talks about coping with the loss in business, and how the crisis hasn't dampened the conservation efforts that his resorts have been carrying out from the start.

Meanwhile, if you're suffering severe Japanese travel withdrawal symptoms, a sudden spurt of new sushi and kappo restaurant openings will help to alleviate them somewhat. After delaying their openings because of "circuit breaker" measures, Phase 2 is seeing several Japanese chefs leaving the comfort of established restaurants to strike out on their own. We narrow down a few to look out for.

Watch fans, look out for some fresh facelifts from your favourite brands, while book-lovers can go deep into the mind of Oscar-winning screenwriter Charlie Kaufman through his brilliant debut novel Antkind.

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