Global Business Development

EGS Biweekly Global Business Newsletter Issue 15, Monday, October 19, 2020

By William (Bill) Edwards, CEO of Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS)

“Nothing is permanent. Don’t stress yourself too much because no matter how bad the situation is….it will change”, courtesy of Leadership First in a LinkedIn post, October 16, 2020

“There are only a finite number of problems but there are an infinite number of solutions”, Simon Sinek, October 16, 2020

“Most leaders focus on finding the right strategy. The best leaders focus on empowering the right people”, Craig Groeschel


This biweekly newsletter focuses on what is happening around the world that impacts new trends, health, consumer spending, business investment and travel. A few highlights in issue #15:

  • Articles And Charts: “Who Is the Emerging-Market Consumer in the Postpandemic Era?
  • A Michelin Starred Meal on a Ferris Wheel: we need some light and fun innovations in these times!
  • Articles And Charts: Now Is the Time To Reassess Our Quality of Life – and Our Work/Life Balance
  • Catching coronavirus on plane ‘extremely unlikely’ while wearing mask, (U.S.) Department of Defense study finds
  • Melbourne eases lockdown as cases decline
  • China Economy Grows 4.9% as Rest of World Struggles With Coronavirus

We monitor 30+ countries, 40+ international information sources and six business sectors to keep up with what is going on in this ever-changing environment. Our team on the ground covers 43 countries and provides us with updates about what is happening in their specific countries. Please feel free to send us your input and sources of information. Our contact information is at the bottom of this newsletter.

First, a few Personal Comments

As this edition of our biweekly newsletter goes out, the COVID-19 cases are going up in European countries and stabilizing or going down in China, India, Israel, Japan, Melbourne,  Australia and the Americas. Our company’s primary business before COVID-19 hit was to take franchise companies into new countries around the world. This involves finding a company in other countries that would invest in bringing the brand to their country. New investment was put on hold from March through June 2020 as companies worldwide tries to maintain their local businesses and keep their current employees safe. Beginning in mid-July and accelerating in September we began to see companies come back interested in making new investments. Today we are busy again with companies in Australia, China, India, Israel, Italy, Korea, Mexico, Peru, Saudi Arabia, Spain and the United Arab Emirates.  These companies look beyond today and even 2021. They are looking to build business that create good jobs for the future. We are awed at human resilience!!!!

“The emerging resilients: Achieving ‘escape velocity: The experience of the fast movers out of the last recession teaches leaders emerging from this one to take thoughtful actions to balance growth, margins, and optionality.”, McKinsey & Company, October 2020

“Ikea to open record number of stores this year despite online shift: Swedish group will focus openings on smaller formats and in city centres….The world’s biggest furniture retailer is set to open more than 50 stores in its current financial year, with a majority in city centres or in a smaller format than its traditional vast out-of-town warehouses, the new chief executive of brand owner Inter Ikea told the Financial Times.”, The Financial Times, October 6, 2020

Restaurant Innovation in these times!!! “A Michelin Starred Meal on a Ferris Wheel” – Hit by a plunge in turnover after foreign tourists vanished, Michelin-starred Hungarian restaurant Costes has staged a skyline dining event on the Budapest Eye ferris wheel to generate sales in a coronavirus-proof environment. Costes owner Karoly Gerendai said that turnover at one of his reopened restaurants is down to about a tenth of pre-lockdown levels, forcing him to look for new ways to do business. “Now that there are not many people either on the wheel or in the restaurant because there are no tourists, the opportunity arose that we could do this,” he said of the event at the landmark attraction in central Budapest.

International Travel Updates

“Catching coronavirus on plane ‘extremely unlikely’ while wearing mask, (U.S.) Department of Defense study finds: A new Department of Defense study, conducted with United Airlines, found that the risk of COVID-19 exposure is “extremely unlikely,” even on a 12-hour flight. Researchers conducted hundreds of tests aboard some of United’s Boeing 777 and 767 aircraft, both in flight and on the ground. They released tracer aerosols from a mannequin equivalent to thousands of coughs and traced how they moved through the cabin. They tested with both the mannequin wearing a mask and not wearing a mask. “The results are in: Your exposure to COVID-19 is almost non-existent on our flights,” United tweeted about the study. The air is changed in the jets even more frequently than in a standard hospital operating room, the study found. It takes just six minutes for 99.99% of particles to be filtered out of the cabin.”, Fox News, October 15, 2020

“Airlines expect a post-coronavirus boom in leisure travel, they just don’t know when: The coronavirus pandemic has laid the airline industry bare, cutting travelers to a fraction of last year’s numbers and even reducing some big names to bankruptcy.  But the word from industry executives at the Boyd International Aviation Forecast Summit on Monday was of opportunity ahead, though that was mixed with a serious dose of realistic hardship still to come.”, The Points Guy, October 13, 2020

“Singapore moves closer to Hong Kong ‘air travel bubble’, considers opening borders unilaterally. Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung said Singapore will consider more travel bubbles with countries deemed safe even if they do not reciprocate. Plans to open a fifth ‘mega terminal’ at Changi Airport will be delayed by two years due to effects of coronavirus pandemic. Singapore’s Transport Minister Ong Ye Kung on Tuesday signalled travellers from Hong Kong may soon be able to visit without being required to stick to a controlled itinerary or complete a 14-day quarantine.”, South China Morning Post, October 6, 2020

“U.S. Covid-Testing Plan Aims to Open New York-London Travel by Holidays: Airlines, governments hope testing will spur more travel for business and pleasure. U.S. officials are aiming to open travel between New York City and London with shortened traveler quarantine periods as soon as the holidays, according to people familiar with the matter. The growing availability of Covid-19 tests in the U.S. has prompted officials at the Transportation Department, Department of Homeland Security and other agencies to revive efforts to establish safe travel corridors between the U.S. and international destinations, the people said. Establishing those routes would require travelers to be tested for Covid-19 before their flight and again upon arrival, allowing them to avoid lengthy quarantines at their destinations.”, The Wall Street Journal, October 1, 2020

“Italy requires more travelers get tested for COVID-19 before visiting: Italy has expanded its list of high-risk countries from which travelers must get tested for COVID-19. Those arriving into the country need to demonstrate that they have taken a test and received a negative result during the previous 72 hours, or they will have to take a test within 48 hours of arrival. The new rule applies to those who have come from, or stayed in Belgium, France, the Netherlands, the UK, Northern Ireland, the Czech Republic and Spain in the previous 14 days. The measure has come into effect because Italian health minister, Roberto Speranza, signed a new ordinance, which provides for urgent measures to contain and manage the health emergency. Travelers will need to undergo the test upon arrival at the airport, port or border area, where possible. If not, they must take it within 48 hours of entering at a local health authority and must self-isolate in the meantime at their home or place of residence. They must also promptly report any symptoms they are experiencing to the health authority through dedicated telephone numbers. Those who test positive will be required to quarantine.”, Lonely Planet, October 12, 2020

“The next three nations set to reopen to Australian travellers: Australians could be allowed to jet off to Singapore, South Korea and Japan within six months, an airport boss has claimed. Geoff Culbert, the CEO of Sydney Airport, made the prediction at the Australian Financial Review National Infrastructure Summit on Wednesday. Mr Culbert was speaking about the future of overseas holidays, as Sydney prepares to welcome its first planeload of tourists on Friday as part of the Australia-New Zealand travel bubble. About 200 visitors are expected to touchdown.”, The Daily Mail, October 14, 2020

United Airlines Launching New Warm-Weather Routes to the Caribbean and Central America: United Airlines is ramping up its winter schedule with more flights to warm-weather destinations in Mexico, the Caribbean, and Central America. In total, the airline is adding eight new routes to increased service to 19 destinations over the coming months as various islands and countries in Central America welcome back American travelers.”, Travel & Leisure, October 16, 2020

Copa Airlines announced its first increase in international operations since November. The carrier plans to connect Panama City, Panama with 35 destinations all over America. The destinations span over a dozen countries from South America, North America and Central America.”, Airline Geeks, October 15, 2020

Second Carnival Brand Resumes Cruising in Europe: Carnival Corporation’s (CCL) Germany-based AIDA Cruises took to the seas again on Saturday, October 17, as the line’s first voyage departed from Rome on a seven-day itinerary exclusively visiting Italian ports. Embarkation at the Civitavecchia cruise port……AIDA is the second Carnival Corporation cruise line to resume cruising as part of a phased-in operational restart.”, Cruise Radio, October 17, 2020

Latin America

“LATAM (Airlines) Gradually Restores Passenger Operations: In September, LATAM Airlines Group offered more frequencies to domestic destinations in Chile, Brazil, Peru and Ecuador and restarted the domestic operation in Colombia. On international flights, the novelties were the routes from Sao Paulo to Montevideo, and Santiago to Montevideo, two weekly flights from Santiago to Los Angeles and New York respectively, an increase to three flights a week from Santiago to Madrid, in addition to the Sao Paulo to New York. In Chile, LATAM flew 11 destinations, going from 20 to 35 daily frequencies……In relation to the cargo operation, the load factor was 70.4% (16.9% over that registered in the same period of the previous year). LATAM Cargo has maximized the use of its B-767F cargo fleet and has used passenger aircraft for exclusive cargo transportation.”, Airline Geeks, October 17, 2020

Asia Pacific Countries

“Asia-Pacific countries begin to ease pandemic-related travel bans, but hurdles remain: Asia-Pacific countries including Singapore, Australia, Japan and Thailand are gradually easing some international travel restrictions as coronavirus cases slow, in hopes of helping to revive their economies.”, Reuters, October 11, 2020


“Melbourne eases lockdown as cases decline: Australia’s second-largest city, Melbourne, has loosened lockdown restrictions as new and active COVID-19 continue to decline. From midnight Sunday, Melbourne residents will no longer face limits on the time they can spend away from their homes for education or recreation. Previous restrictions allowing Melburnians to travel only 5 kilometers (3 miles) from home will increase at midnight to 25 kilometers (15 miles).”, AP News, October 18, 2020

“Data from an on-line commercial real estate platform indicates an increase in retail vacancies of 40% in central business districts across Australia compared with the same time last year, according to a media report. Melbourne’s CBD has been the hardest hit with the second lockdown and stage four restrictions impacting businesses already struggling after the first shutdown. Uncertainty surrounds the long-term implications of the pandemic-driven increase in retail vacancies due to the uptake of working from home which could become a lasting arrangement for many CBD office workers.”,, September 27, 2020.  Compliments of Jason Gehrke, Founder and Director, Franchise Advisory Centre, Brisbane, Australia

Mainland China

“China Economy Grows 4.9% as Rest of World Struggles With Coronavirus: The 4.9% growth figure for the third quarter fell short of expectations but brings China’s trajectory closer in line with forecasts made at the beginning of the year for 2020 growth of between 5.5% and 6%—forecasts made before the pandemic swept across the globe, killing more than a million people and crushing the global economy. The International Monetary Fund is projecting China’s economy to expand by 1.9% in 2020, putting it on track to be the only major world economy to grow this pandemic-hit year.”, The Wall Street Journal, October 18, 2020

The third-quarter expansion builds on the second quarter’s 3.2% growth, which follows a historic contraction of 6.8% in the first three months of the year, when authorities locked down the central Chinese city of Wuhan in a bid to curb the fast-spreading virus.

China Quarterly Car Sales Shift Out of Reverse for First Time in Two Years: A broader economic rebound in the country is now beginning to wash over consumers. China’s car market recorded its first quarter of year-over-year sales growth in two years as a broad economic recovery bolstered consumer confidence and discounts boosted demand, especially for electric vehicles.”, The Wall Street Journal, October 13, 2020

“China’s Golden Week 2020 – A speedy and robust recovery is underway in China: Chinese consumers have further released their pent-up demand over the eight-day National Day holiday. Their revenge spending provides us an indication of how swiftly consumer appetite and economic activities in China could approach pre-pandemic levels, making it clear to us that a robust recovery is underway. Considering domestic consumption as a substantial contributor for China’s economic growth, we expect that more government policies and initiatives will be directed towards boosting local consumer spending both in the short and long term. With many consumers sticking to their online shopping routine even after the COVID-19 pandemic, online consumption is playing a bigger role in driving the country’s recovery in overall consumption.”, Fung Business Intelligence, October 16, 2020

“How China’s Urban Millennials and Gen Z Live and Spend: In 2019, millennials (born between 1980 and 1994) and Generation Z (born between 1995 and 2009) accounted for almost 40% of the population in China. The proportion of the population living in urban areas reached around 60% in 2019, and is projected to reach 65% by 2025. The demographic landscape and population trends have put a specific segment in the spotlight – urban millennials and Generation Z, which together represent one of the most critical forces shaping the outlook for the Chinese consumer market, as their attitudes towards digital convenience, shopping preferences and lifestyles are driving the growth of the relevant sectors and providing new market opportunities.”, Euromonitor International, October 2020

Wealthy shoppers in China more confident in luxury spending outlook than US counterparts: More Chinese luxury spenders see themselves maintaining or increasing their luxury spending over the next 12 months compared to those from the US, report says. US big spenders have mostly splurged on alcohol, dining and hotels during the pandemic, with the Chinese preferring beauty and consumer electronics. Despite the coronavirus pandemic still raging across continents, wealthy luxury consumers in China and the United States are optimistic about their economic well-being, according to a new report by consulting firm Agility Research & Strategy.”, South China Morning Post, October 15, 2020

“China’s inflation hit 19-month low in September as pork prices cool: China’s official consumer price index (CPI) rose 1.7 per cent in September from a year earlier, down from 2.4 per cent in August. China’s producer price index (PPI) shrank 2.1 per cent in September compared to a year earlier, widening slightly from a fall of 2.0 per cent in August.”, South China Morning Post, October 15, 2020


Air India Launches Delhi to Vancouver service: Air India (AI) has announced a 3x weekly service to Vancouver from Delhi. According to Routes Online, the service will operate as AI185 to YVR and AI186 returning to DEL. The … schedule will go into effect on November 1, 2020, and will last until March 12th, 2021…”, Airways, October 12, 2020

“India To Resume International Flights in 2021: The Indian Minister of Civil Aviation, Hardeep Singh Puri expects that the country will resume international flights by Q1 2021. India extended its imposed travel ban on international air travel until October 31….In the meantime, the Asian nation has progressed on air bubbles, which are temporary flying arrangements, to start a light return of commercial passenger services. India has reached air bubbles with 16 countries and has others under negotiation.”, Airways, October 5, 2020


Mask up, or else: Italy’s new covid-19 rules: The Italian government is today due to confirm new measures to contain the spread of covid-19. Like other European countries, Italy has seen contagion rise in recent weeks, although the level of infection is still relatively low. In the two weeks to October 6th, it was under a sixth of that in Spain. But after being hit so cruelly in the spring, Italy will not be taking any chances. A cabinet decree is expected to make masks obligatory outdoors (which is already required in some regions).”, The London Economist, October 7, 2020

“A New Alitalia Is Born, and Its Name is Ita: The new name for the airline, ITA stands for Italy Air Transport (Italia Trasporto Aereo). The carrier has assets totaling €20m and a €3bn budget coming entirely from the Ministry of Finance and Economic Development (MEF). The new business plan initially foresees about 90 aircraft and 6,500 employees, with a focus on integration with Fs (Italian State Railways) and long-haul routes, especially those to the US – the most profitable, said AZ CEO Fabio Maria Lazzerini last month in an audit at the Italian House of Commons.”, Airways, October 10, 2020


“Japan to Lift Travel Ban to 12 Countries, Including China But Not U.S.: Japan is planning to remove a ban on overseas travel to China and 11 other countries next month, the Yomiuri newspaper reported on Thursday. The 11 other countries and regions include Taiwan, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea, Vietnam and Malaysia, the Yomiuri said. The Japanese government, which currently bans travel to 159 countries and regions, will recommend that travellers refrain from unnecessary and non-urgent visits to those 12 countries, the newspaper said.”, Skift, October 7, 2020


“Here’s how Singapore plans to resume international travel safely: For a small country with no domestic air travel market, Singapore ‘can’t wait around for a vaccine’ to revive the crucial aviation industry, said Ong Ye Kung, the country’s transport minister. The tiny Southeast Asian nation is working to establish travel bubbles with countries that have kept the coronavirus outbreak under control, said Ong.”, CNBC, October 12, 2020

United Kingdom

U.K. Government Form ‘Global Travel Taskforce’ to Recover International Travel: Almost nine months into the global pandemic that has decimated the U.K. tourism, hospitality and aviation sectors, the U.K. government announced on Wednesday the formation of a task force to ‘support the travel industry and the safe recovery of international travel’. The Global Travel Taskforce will report to Prime Minister Boris Johnson and be co-chaired by Grant Shapps the Secretary of State for Transport and the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Matt Hancock….The aims of the Global Travel Taskforce are to ‘consider what steps the government can take, both domestically and on the international stage, to enable the safe and sustainable recovery of international travel’.”, Airline Geeks, October 10, 2020

Working from home tips: how to cope without the office: The office is closed and you’re back on Zoom in the kitchen. Anna Maxted asks the experts how to stay sane….Burnout is generally recognised by the World Health Organisation as a work-related phenomenon, but, says Siobhán Murray, a psychotherapist ( and the author of The Burnout Solution, ‘it can also be defined as emotional, mental and physical exhaustion brought on by emotionally demanding situations’.”, The Times of London, October 9, 2020

Tesco profits surge 29% amid pandemic: The new chief executive of Tesco said this morning that his job would be to maintain momentum after online food sales doubled and pre-tax profits surged during the coronavirus crisis. The UK’s largest supermarket has posted a 28.7 per cent rise in pre-tax profits to £551 million in the six months to the end of August. Sales, excluding VAT and fuel, rose by 6.6 per cent to £26.7 billion. Operating profits fell 15.6 per cent to £1.037 billion, dragged down by losses in its banking division.”, The Times of London, October 7, 2020

United States

Global Outlook Brightens as U.S. Consumer Imports Reach Pre-Pandemic Levels: U.S. trade deficit in August was largest since 2006 on recovery of consumer-goods imports…..International Monetary Fund Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, in a Tuesday speech ahead of annual IMF and World Bank meetings next week, said the global economy won’t contract this year as much as the IMF projected in June. “The picture today is less dire,” Ms. Georgieva said in London. “We now estimate that developments in the second and third quarters were somewhat better than expected, allowing for a small upward revision to our global forecast for 2020.”, The Wall Street Journal, October 6, 2020

The number of new businesses in America is booming: No other rich-world country is experiencing the same rise in entrepreneurship. Based on a different survey Goldman Sachs, a bank, finds that the share of respondents starting a new business in the past three months has also risen sharply. Other evidence shows that about as many Americans now work for themselves as before the pandemic, even as overall joblessness remains high.”, The London Economist, October 10, 2020

Rental Recalibration: Landlords and tenants alike are adjusting: As the country continues to navigate through the pandemic, commercial property renters are facing an increasing struggle to reshape their business models to move outside their traditional brick-and-mortar spaces, while the residential industry moves business toward property management companies and away from independent landlords……Landlord-tenant relationships often can be strained. However, to keep tenants in their homes and help landlords plan for late payments amid the pandemic, the property management industry has grown more flexible. With data suggesting that rent collection is down only 3–5% since March, the rental market has not been affected as severely as many had expected.”,, October 9, 2020

Brand News

Stories from the Covid-19 Front Lines: Update with Susan Boresow, President of Title Boxing Club.”, an interview with one of the leaders in the US fitness franchise sector on how they made it through COVID-19., October 2020

Focus Brands Chief Commercial Officer, Dan Gertsacov, Is Making Digital Real In The Restaurants: The multi-brand restaurant portfolio is a relatively new business model, fueled in large part by private equity, and Focus Brands is one of its pioneers. With seven brands and more than 6,000 locations globally, the Focus franchise ecosystem benefits from this breadth and scale. It’s realized through good ol’ purchasing power but also attracting the talent and leadership of someone like Dan Gertsacov, who was previously at Google before joining the largest independent McDonald’s franchisee, Arcos Dorados Holdings, to lead both marketing and digital. In the following interview, we talk about building a 21st-century restaurant tech stack and multi-brand marketing function, while staying grounded in the purpose and local connection that each brand has with its customers.”, Forbes, October 7, 2020

Beyond Meat launching limited-time plant-based burger at 210 KFC China locations: Beyond Meat and KFC first tested the Beyond Burger at select China locations over the summer. It will be available more widely for three weeks.”, Market Watch, October 12, 2020

Articles And Charts About Doing Business in The Times Of COVID-19 and Beyond

Now Is the Time To Reassess Our Quality of Life – and Our Work/Life Balance: Our formerly notoriously fast-paced, frenetic lifestyle and demanding routines have come to an abrupt halt. It’s said that out of every tragedy come renewed strength and fortitude. The good news: the destructive, insidious pandemic aimed at destroying us is actually bringing our society closer together and enabling us to reassess the quality of our lives. After so much suffering and devastating loss of health, loved ones, jobs, and entire businesses, we are going through a metamorphosis of sorts, gaining a new appreciation and respect for time and, possibly, life itself. People re-examining how they spend their time, reevaluating priorities, purpose, and life plans abound.”, Franchising. com, October 7, 2020

VOICE OF THE INDUSTRY: CONSUMER HEALTH”, Euromonitor study on the impact of the pandemic on consumer health, October 2020

“Offices have a future — but what about other workplaces?  Most of the technologies that white-collar workers have relied on in recent months — Zoom, Skype, Teams — have been around for years. It took a pandemic, though, for them to become widespread: at the start of the outbreak, about two-thirds of those working in the US and UK did so remotely. Does this working-from-home revolution mean we no longer need workplaces? Of course not. As the pandemic has gone on, it has become clear that offices are very likely to remain a fixture of future life.”, The Financial Times, October 18, 2020

Why 4 Technologies That Boomed During Covid-19 Will Keep People Home More After A Vaccine: To test the staying power of technologies that became vital during the coronavirus pandemic, the Oliver Wyman Forum conducted a survey of almost 6,900 consumers in eight countries. Here, based on our data, we show why the pandemic has guaranteed four solutions — video conferencing, grocery-shopping apps, telehealth, and e-learning — mass markets big enough to ensure their commercial growth and permanent integration.”, Forbes, October 7, 2020

“Identifying Digital Trends In Emerging Markets: COVID-19 put the world in a unique position, forcing consumers to change their daily habits and businesses to prioritise innovation to remain competitive. Brands are changing the way they communicate with consumers, and in some cases revolutionising the products they offer….In 2020, significant business transformations introduced new consumers to technologies like digital services, online financial payments and e-commerce….Compared to more developed markets, consumers in emerging markets lag both in technology adoption and availability of services because they lack familiarity and trust…..As a result of the pandemic, consumer online habits increased in both emerging and developed markets. This white paper examines how the pandemic impacted the availability and use of online products and services, as well as successful business innovation and adaption case studies in emerging markets.”, Euromonitor, October 2020

“‘Feel-good food’ is now a social currency for Gen Z: Young Gen Zers aged 15 to 25 are actively looking for greater transparency on food and its origin, expecting brands to produce food that they feel good about eating, a recent study shows.”, Inside FMCG, October 16, 2020, compliments of Jason Gehrke, Founder and Director, Franchise Advisory Centre, Brisbane, Australia

“Who Is the Emerging-Market Consumer in the Postpandemic Era? Nine months into the COVID-19 pandemic, and six months since our initial consumer sentiment survey in emerging markets, consumers’ behavioral patterns are starting to take shape. People are adapting, and while the dust is yet to settle, we already see early signals of a new reality. While deep concerns about COVID-19 persist, the prevailing attitudes are shifting from fear to acceptance….As more time passes and the pandemic persists, it is becoming clear that consumers’ activities are taking a starkly different shape than those before COVID-19.”, Boston Consulting Group September survey

Who We Are And What We Do

Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) provides a complete International solution for U.S. businesses Going Global. From initial global market research and country prioritization, to developing new international markets and providing operational support around the world. Our U.S. based executive team has experience living and working in many countries. Our Associate network on the ground overseas covers 40+ countries.

Founded in 2001, Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) takes U.S. businesses global and currently has activity in 25 countries.  Our Clients are all consumer-faced brands.  Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) has twice received the U.S. President’s Award for Export Excellence

Find out more about the services we provide U.S. companies Going Global at:

William Edwards, CFE, is CEO and Global Advisor of Edwards Global Services (EGS). He has 46 years of international operations, development, executive and entrepreneurial experience and has lived in 7 countries. With experience in the franchise, oil and gas, information technology and management consulting sectors, he has directed projects on-site in Alaska, Asia, Europe and the Middle and Near East.  Mr. Edwards advises a wide range of companies on early to long term global development of their brands.


For global cross business sectoral updates and advice on taking your business global, contact Mr. Edwards at or +1 949 224 3896.

EGS Biweekly Global Business Newsletter Issue 14, Monday, October 5, 2020

By William (Bill) Edwards, CEO of Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS)

“Others have seen what is and asked why. I have seen what could be and asked why not.”, Pablo Picasso

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”, Albert Einstein

“Yesterday is not ours to recover, but tomorrow is ours to win or lose.”, U.S. President Lyndon Johnson


This biweekly newsletter focuses on what is happening in more than 20 countries that impact new trends, health, consumer spending, business investment and travel. A few highlights in issue #14:

  • McKinsey & Co. global economic conditions snapshot
  • New Stat Augurs Well for Covid Recovery: Gross output measures business confidence better than GDP
  • View and download our latest quarterly GlobalVue™ country ranking chart at our EGS website:
  • The Future of Supply Chain Automation – an infographic that shows how supply chain management is changing
  • How South Korea Successfully Managed Coronavirus
  • Argentina, Colombia and Peru begin to open for international travel

We monitor 30+ countries, 40+ international information sources and six business sectors to keep up with what is going on in this ever-changing environment. Our team on the ground covers 43 countries and provides us with updates about what is happening in their specific countries. Please feel free to send us your input and sources of information. Our contact information is at the bottom of this newsletter.

Countries and regions reported on in this issue include: Africa, Latin America, Australia, Belarus, Brazil, Mainland China, India, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, the United Kingdom and the USA.

This issue’s chart is from the September 2020 McKinsey & Co. Economic Conditions Snapshot

New Stat Augurs Well for Covid Recovery: Gross output measures business confidence better than GDP. It’s fallen less than in past recessions. For the first time, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released the “top line” gross output, or GO, at the same time as it published the “bottom line” gross domestic product. And the GO data brought a welcome surprise: It shows the economy is much more resilient than it looked. Steve Forbes offers a useful metaphor: ‘GDP is like an X-ray of the economy; GO is like a CAT-scan.’ GO reveals a deeper level of economic activity and is therefore helpful in predicting the direction of growth, not only its current state.”, The Wall Street Journal, October 2, 2020

America and Singapore are tops in 2020 for global digital competitiveness: The US held onto its top spot in a global ranking of digital competitiveness thanks to access to capital and an emphasis on robotics. Singapore also stayed in the No. 2 spot on the IMD World Digital Competitiveness Ranking (WDCR) for 2020. The country earned more No. 1 rankings than the US in the rankings on individual criteria. The WDCR measures the capacity and readiness of 63 economies to adopt digital technologies for economic and social transformation. This year’s Top 10 list looks very similar to last year’s: United States of America, Singapore, Denmark, Sweden, Hong Kong SAR, Switzerland, Netherlands, South Korea, Norway and Finland. The UK came in at No. 13 overall and its scores on the individual criteria have held steady over the years. Australia is in the No. 15 spot with technology scoring highest among the three criteria.”, Tech Republic, October 2, 2020

“East Asia: Containment and Recovery: The coronavirus has shied away from no corner of the globe, but some countries have weathered the storm far better than others – and have much more cause for economic optimism going forward. The intensity of the economic fallout from one country to the next has hinged on a mind-boggling array of interlocking factors. As countries in East Asia, in particular, increasingly shift focus from containment of the pandemic to economic recovery, their success will hinge on other factors. According to the World Bank’s latest forecast for the region, these include government capacity to open up the stimulus spigots, its ability to phase out of shutdowns without allowing the virus to become uncontrollable again, and the depth of the hole they’re trying to climb out of.”, Geopolitical Futures, October 3, 2020

International Travel Updates

“United Resumes Nonstop Service to Shanghai: In an important ramp up following Chinese market recovery, United Airlines yesterday announced it will start a four-times-weekly nonstop service to China between San Francisco International Airport and Shanghai’s Pudong International Airport.”, Airline Geeks, October 5, 2020

“’Close to 100% accuracy’: Helsinki airport uses sniffer dogs to detect Covid: Researchers running Helsinki pilot scheme say dogs can identify virus in seconds. Four Covid-19 sniffer dogs have begun work at Helsinki airport in a state-funded pilot scheme that Finnish researchers hope will provide a cheap, fast and effective alternative method of testing people for the virus. A dog is capable of detecting the presence of the coronavirus within 10 seconds and the entire process takes less than a minute to complete, according to Anna Hielm-Björkman of the University of Helsinki, who is overseeing the trial. ‘It’s very promising,’ said Hielm-Björkman. ‘If it works, it could prove a good screening method in other places’ such as hospitals, care homes and at sporting and cultural events.”, The Guardian, September 24, 2020

Returning to New York from an international destination? You’ll likely have to quarantine: (New York Governor) Cuomo signed an executive order Monday re-enforcing mandatory quarantine requirements for international travelers returning to New York from countries marked Level 2 and Level 3 on the State Department’s travel advisories list.”, The Points Guy, October 3, 2020

Air Canada Airport COVID-19 Testing Trial Shows Promising Results: In September Air Canada partnered with a Canadian lab and the Greater Toronto Airports Authority to test arriving passengers for COVID-19 using a polymerase chain reaction test at Toronto’s Pearson Airport directly upon their arrival and then two tests that would be self-collected at seven days after arrival and at 14 days after arrival.”, Airline Geeks, October 4, 2020

US travelers still cannot visit most European Union member countries: “Back in March, the European Commission introduced travel restrictions that lasted until this summer until the Union authorized a list of 14 countries that were exempt. The Commission continues to periodically update this list,” Caroline Rose, Middle East and Europe analyst for the forecasting firm Geopolitical Futures, told the Washington Examiner. The latest update on the EU’s Re-open EU website added Australia, Canada, Georgia, Japan, New Zealand, Rwanda, South Korea, Thailand, Tunisia, Uruguay, and even China (“subject to confirmation of reciprocity”) to the list of nations in which its citizens are allowed to visit EU countries. ‘So far, the U.S. has been excluded,’ Rose said. And while the list of excluded and allowed nations is not technically ‘legally binding’ on individual EU nations, “Brussels has applied a lot of political pressure for its members not to act independently of the travel ban and welcome unlisted nationals.” She doesn’t see most EU countries ‘giving U.S. nationals the greenlight anytime soon.’”, The Washington Examiner, September 17, 2020

3 more major cruise lines cancel sailings until at least December: You’ll now have to wait until at least December to take a cruise with Norwegian Cruise Line, Oceania Cruises or Regent Seven Seas Cruises. The parent company of the three brands, Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, on Monday said it would extend its halt to cruise operations through at least Nov. 30. Until today, the company only had canceled sailings through the end of October. The Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings announcement comes just four days after one of the line’s biggest rivals, cruise giant Carnival, canceled most departures through January. Carnival still hopes to operate some sailings in November and December out of just two ports: Port Miami and Port Canaveral. Two other major brands, Princess Cruises and Holland America, already have canceled all or most sailings through Dec. 15.”, The Points Guy, October 5, 2020

Delta Air Lines Returns to Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala: Delta Air Lines (DL) has made a significant restart in Latin America with flights resuming into Colombia, El Salvador and Guatemala. Non-stop flights between Atlanta (ATL) and Bogota (BOG) began today, which will operate on a four times per week basis before going daily on November 1.”, Airways Magazine, October 2, 2020

Peru To Resume International Flights This Month: After a seven-month suspension, Peru is reopening its skies to commercial flight operations in October. The country’s international trade and tourism minister, Rocio Barrios, announced that international travel will resume on Oct. 5, reinstating commercial connectivity with other Latin American countries first.”, Airline Geeks, October 2, 2020

New Zealand, Australia loosen travel restrictions: Flights between these close by countries have started to go on sale. Airways Magazine, October 3, 2020

Germany lifts warning against travel to all non-EU countries: Germany lifted its blanket warning against travelling to all countries outside the EU, although little is likely to change for most travellers. The foreign ministry extended a warning for parts of Belgium to the entire country, and warned against travel to Wales and Northern Ireland.”, The Sunday Times of London, October 2, 2020

Disney’s Hawaii resort to start phased reopening in November: Disney’s Aulani resort and spa in Hawaii will begin a phased reopening in November, following the governor’s announcement that out-of-state travelers will soon be able to bypass two weeks of quarantine if they test negative for COVID-19 prior to arrival.”, Fox Business, September 25, 2020

Sea changes: A preview of the new COVID-related cruise restrictions: Health experts advising some of the world’s biggest cruise brands on how to restart cruising unveiled recommendations this week that included a call to significantly restrict passenger movements during port stops.”, The Points Guy, September 27, 2020

Argentina to Resume Flight Operations from Mid-October: The Argentinian Minister of Transport, Mario Meoni, confirmed on Thursday that in mid-October commercial flights will return and anticipated that the Government is ‘working to resolve as soon as possible’ the normalization of activity.”, Airline Geeks, October 4, 2020

Colombia Resumes 63 Routes As Part of Plan to Reinstate Connectivity: Throughout September, Colombia has resumed commercial airline operations. Domestic flights were allowed back to the skies on Sept. 1 and international fights restarted on Sept. 19. As the country continues to reopen its skies, Colombia announced it will be reopening 63 domestic routes from major cities such as Bogotá, Medellin, Cali and Cartagena, according to Latin American portal Aviaciónline.”, Airline Geeks, September 23, 2020


Optimism Around Africa’s Business Potential: Over the past two decades, Africa has been home to the fastest-growing economies in the world and is ripe for global and local business investment. In his new book, Unlocking Africa’s Business Potential: Trends, Opportunities, Risks, and Strategies, Thunderbird professor, Landry Signé shares his optimism for sustained growth in Africa as he examines economic, business and investment issues and discusses the growth trends and drivers. ‘By 2030, Africa will have 1.7 billion people and a combined consumer and business spending of $6.7 trillion.” ~ Thunderbird professor Landry Signé, Thunderbird School of Global Management, October 1, 2020

Latin America

Major Country Developments – Mexico, Central America, Caribbean: The slump in travel caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has hit the tourism sector hard in several Central American and Caribbean countries. A slump in remittances [by immigrants working and sending money back home to support families and small businesses], has also negatively impacted some countries, but in many cases observers are baffled by the strong inflows that have resumed, sometimes at record levels.”, Meridian Finance Group, September 22, 2020


Australia’s Victoria state to ease COVID-19 restrictions as cases slow: Victoria, Australia’s second most populous state and the epicentre of the country’s COVID-19 outbreak, will accelerate the easing of social distancing restrictions as infections slow to fewer than 20 cases a day, its premier said on Sunday.”, September 26, 2020

Commercial Tenancy Rent relief Scheme Extended: In response to the continuing impacts of COVID-19 on the Victorian economy, the State Government recently passed the COVID-19 Commercial and Residential Tenancies Legislation Amendment (Extensions) Act 2020 (Vic) (the Act). This extends the Commercial Tenancy Rent Relief Scheme introduced earlier this year, and introduces several changes aiming to assist both commercial tenants and landlords through financial hardship. For eligible leases, the prohibition on eviction for non-payment of rent and prohibition on rent increase is extended until 31 December 2020. Eviction for breaches not related to payment, such as property damage, is still allowed. Eligible leases are currently those by small to medium enterprises (SMEs) with an annual aggregate turnover under $50 million who have suffered at least a 30% reduction in turnover since March 29 2020. However, the Act allows for eligibility requirements to be adjusted in the future.”, MST Lawyers, September 30, 2020 

Mexican chain moves closer to IPO: Australian-based Mexican food chain Guzman Y Gomez has moved a step closer to listing on the stock exchange by converting from a proprietary company to an unlisted public company, according to a media report. The 140-store chain has achieved accumulated sales of $1 billion and operates in Australia, Singapore and the United States. It’s drive-through stores in Australia have achieved sales increases of 50-100% during the pandemic, according to the report.”, Australia Financial Review, September 23, 2020

A quarter of workplaces saw productivity improve during COVID-19. The same number saw a drop: As millions of employees worked from home during the coronavirus pandemic, sparking a surge in the adoption of new technologies, one-in-four Australian businesses reported productivity had fallen, while the same number said productivity had improved. Australian companies have, on average, increased their adoption of some key digital technologies during the COVID-19 period by as much as the previous 10 years, a study by consultancy AlphaBeta, a part of Accenture, shows…But the effects on business efficiency from having large numbers of employees working from home have been mixed, with as many firms experiencing a fall in productivity during the pandemic as had a rise.”, Brisbane Times, September 24, 2020, compliments of Jason Gehrke, Managing Director, The Franchise Advisory Centre, Brisbane


Texas Chicken® opens a QSR restaurant at the Dana Mall in Minsk, Belarus! Congratulations to the team for persevering with this location through a very eventful summer in Belarus. (This is Church’s Chicken® in the USA).”, Yang Ming Ong, Texas Chicken Business, October 1, 2020.


Venture Capital Investments Reach New High In Brazil: A total of US$ 843 million has been invested in Brazilian startups throughout September 2020 in what has been the busiest month ever for the segment, according to a new survey. In terms of invested volume, last month has seen a 65% increase in relation to September 2019, when total investments reached US$ 510 million, according to the research, carried out by Distrito Dataminer, market intelligence arm of Brazilian open innovation company Distrito. This is also a 796% increase compared with September 2018, when startups raised US$ 94 million.”, Forbes, October 3, 2020

Brazil’s IPO market on track for biggest year since 2007: Companies take advantage of higher valuations after retail investors head into stocks. The market for initial public offerings in Brazil is on track for its biggest year since 2007, fuelled by a recovery in asset prices and a surging number of everyday investors buying into stocks. Seventeen groups have already debuted in Brazil this year and almost 40 more are in the pipeline as companies — and the banks marketing them — work flat out in a year truncated by the coronavirus crisis.”, The Financial Times, September 27, 2020

Mainland China

Millions Fly With China’s Airlines as Pandemic Drags Down Competitors: The world’s harried airline bosses will look enviously to China this week as millions of people take to the skies for national holidays, helping Chinese carriers push even further ahead in their recovery from the pandemic. The holiday starts with the Mid-Autumn Festival and National Day Thursday and runs to Oct. 8. The so-called Golden Week is typically a time for families to reunite and will add momentum to a domestic rebound that’s lifting air travel within China back toward normal levels. More than 15 million people are due to fly over the period, a 10% increase from last year, according to Lan Xiang, head of the research division at online travel agent Qunar.”, Bloomberg and Caixing Global, October 1, 2020

Disneyland Shanghai Hotel Prices Rocket to Over (US)$1,000 a Night: With China’s National Day and Mid-Autumn Festival holidays fast approaching, the room rates of Shanghai Disneyland Hotel have soared to 7,000 yuan ($1,028) per night, when they cost around 3,000 yuan on “regular” days. According to Caijing, a reporter checked prices for a stay from Oct. 2 to Oct. 3 online yesterday (Sept. 29) and found the price of a “Deluxe Park View room” for one night was 7,753 yuan. The “Official Direct Sales” price of 5,479 yuan was already ‘fully booked.’ Today, the Shanghai Disney Resort’s official website showed that all room types on Oct. 2 are now marked ‘unavailable’. The average price for hotel reservations during the National Holidays is nearly 20% higher than last year. During the National Day, hotel reservations exceeded the same period last year by 30%.”, Caixing Global, September 30, 2020

McDonald’s China 2020 changes: The major shareholder (to make) over 100 million investment in young talent training. Economic Observer Network reporter Chen Yifan (stated) “Our vision of reaching 4,500 stores by 2020 remains unchanged. In terms of restaurant portfolio, the goal is to open restaurants in third- and fourth-tier cities, hoping to accelerate the speed and layout of the sinking market.’ September On the 22nd, at the Fifth McDonald’s China ‘McDonald’s Feast’, Zhang Jiayin, CEO of McDonald’s China, said in an interview with media including reporters from Economic Observer. On the same day, McDonald’s China announced the “Unlimited Youth” talent training plan. The plan proposes to invest more than 100 million yuan from 2020 to 2022, and join hands with more than 100 vocational colleges across the country. “The school-running model has helped more than 10,000 young people improve their employability and support them to smoothly embark on a career development path after graduation., translation provided courtesy of Paul Jones, Jones & Co., Toronto 


India Saw 250% Growth In Shopping App Installs Amid Pandemic, Reveals Report: The State of Shopping App Marketing 2020 report by AppsFlyer, a mobile marketing analytics and attribution platform, notes that India witnessed a 250% spike in non-organic shopping app installs as the country began lifting Covid-19 lockdown restrictions in May. This shows that even when given the option of physically visiting the store, Indians preferred to shop online.”,, September 24, 2020

India’s new paper Covid-19 test could be a ‘game changer’: A team of scientists in India has developed an inexpensive paper-based test for coronavirus that could give fast results similar to a pregnancy test….The test, named after a famous Indian fictional detective, is based on a gene-editing technology called Crispr. Scientists estimate that the kit – called Feluda – would return results in under an hour and cost 500 rupees (about $6.75; £5.25).”, BBC News, October 4, 2020

South Korea

How South Korea Successfully Managed Coronavirus: The country has blended technology and testing like no other. South Korea appears to have cracked the code for managing the coronavirus. Its solution is straightforward, flexible and relatively easy to replicate. The country has averaged about 77 new daily cases since early April and recently suppressed a spike in infections. Adjusting for population, that would be the equivalent of about 480 cases a day in the U.S., where new daily cases have averaged about 38,000 over the same period.”, The Wall Street Journal, September 25, 2020


Japan to remove travel ban for ten countries starting in October: Japan plans to remove a ban on overseas travels for about 10 countries starting next month, hoping that such a step would prompt other countries to lift travel curbs on the Japanese, the Nikkei business daily reported on Monday.”, Reuters and Nikkei, September 28, 2020


Singapore planning ‘cruises to nowhere’ to entice tourists: The Singapore Tourism Board (STB) has announced its plans to allow cruise lines to embark on “cruises to nowhere,” as reported by The Straits Times. With many international cruise lines banned from docking in Singapore since March due to the coronavirus, the new plans would allow 50% of the original passenger intake. It comes just days after Singapore Airlines canceled its proposed “flight to nowhere” sightseeing tours following criticism. Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.”, The Insider, October 4, 2020

United Kingdom

The recovery in the manufacturing sector continued last month, with output and new orders increasing. The Markit/CIPS manufacturing PMI fell to 54.1 in September, from 55.2 in August, slightly below the flash estimate of 54.3. Three fifths of manufacturers expected output to rise over the coming year. Samuel Tombs, an economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, thinks the sector will register robust growth in the coming months as EU customers stockpile goods to avoid being hit by tariffs in January. Unemployment remains an issue. Manufacturers continued to cut jobs for the eighth month in a row, although at the lowest rate since February. Changes to job support schemes and the reintroduction of some coronavirus restrictions have increased concerns about a rise in unemployment.”, The Times of London, October 1, 2020

A pool, free wi-fi and no kids: it’s great to be WFH (working from hotel): If the office is still off-limits and the novelty of home working is wearing a little thin, help is at hand. Hundreds of hotels are offering bedrooms as daytime offices, catering for workers tired of being confined to the kitchen table. The catch is that you must leave by teatime, with checkout typically from 4pm to 6pm. Desk space is being offered in hotels from city centres to coastal villages, at costs ranging from £35 to £1,500. Guests can often use the gym and pool, with some hotels even offering free printing and hot drinks. Hoteliers say the offer is popular with workers seeking peace and quiet after a tumultuous few months, along with fast wi-fi and a touch of luxury.”, The Sunday Times Of London, October 4, 2020

Studying abroad: Britain’s new student visas: Boris Johnson’s government will today launch a new visa for foreign students coming to study at British universities. The revamp is part of a broader overhaul of Britain’s immigration laws after Brexit. The new student visa has premiered before most other changes in order to entice international students to take up places at British universities in spite of the pandemic. Universities had feared losing them and their lucrative tuition fees entirely, thus blowing a serious hole in their finances. The government hopes that rolling out the new visa—which includes a period of two years to find a job after graduation, instead of three months under the old system—will dissuade students from staying closer to home. But universities may have helped to sort out the problem themselves. Increased recruiting efforts abroad, and a lack of palatable alternatives, have led to a 9% increase in international undergraduate enrolments this autumn.”, The Economist Expresso, October 5, 2020

United States

There’s Less Than 1% Chance of Catching Covid-19 Flying, Says Airline Exec: Four major U.S. airlines share thoughts on blocked middle seats, the future of business travel, and the issues that’ll affect flying beyond the pandemic.”, Bloomberg, September 27, 2020

Hotel jobs coming back in a handful of large U.S. metro areas: The hard-hit hospitality industry is starting to bounce back from the COVID-19 pandemic — at least in a few U.S. cities. August employment in the accommodations sector in five metro areas climbed back to at least 80 per cent of where it stood a year earlier, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data analyzed by Bloomberg News. This compares with about 60 per cent for the nation as a whole.”, BNN Bloomberg (Canada), October 1, 2020

PepsiCo says it will meet 2020 revenue targets after all: Group benefits from rebound in drinks sales and people who work from home munching on snacks. PepsiCo is on track to deliver about the same full-year revenues that it had expected before coronavirus shut down much of the world economy, helped by a recent recovery in sales of its soft drinks in corner shops and petrol stations. The food and drinks company behind Doritos crisps, Tropicana juice and the eponymous fizzy beverage on Thursday reinstated annual revenue guidance that it had scrapped at the onset of the pandemic. It predicted full-year revenues would rise about 4 per cent from 2019 on an organic basis.”, The Financial Times, October 1, 2020


One major Asian economy besides China is set for growth this year—and its GDP just rose 2.6%. Upticks in manufacturing and exports helped Vietnam’s gross domestic product rise 2.62% year over year in the third quarter, accelerating the country’s economic recovery from a slowdown in the first half of 2020 that was caused by the pandemic. Exports jumped 11% in the third quarter, thanks in large part to a 20% increase in exports of personal computers to meet a growing demand as students worldwide attend online classes and large parts of the global workforce continue to work from home. In September alone, exports jumped 18% compared to the same period last year. ‘Along with China, [Vietnam] is the only major Asian economy expected to register positive growth in 2020,’ said Priyanka Kishore, head of India and South East Asia for Oxford Economics.”, Fortune Magazine, September 29, 2020

Brand News 

What a month of September we and our international franchisees have had around the world in the CKE system! We started on the 3rd of September opening our 13th Carl’s Jr. in Chile, followed three days later with our 21st Hardee’s in Qatar, continued three days after that with our 2nd Carl’s Jr. in France, turned around and opened our 19th Carl’s Jr. in Turkey the very next day and then about week later we opened our 19th in Spain – right next to Real Madrid’s stadium, Santiago Bernabéu… then two new Hardee’s opened, in Pakistan and the UAE, followed this week by Carl’s Jr. openings in Thailand and Panama! Talk about a global company – eight countries on four continents! If you’re interested in hearing about our open territories and these two iconic brands.”, 

Marc Muskin, CKE Restaurants LinkedIn posting.

FASTSIGNS CEO steers the proverbial ship through stormy seas: Catherine Monson is recognized again this year by Franchise Dictionary Magazine as one of the WOW: 50 Women Of Wonder and she graces our cover for excellent reasons. Under her leadership as CEO of FASTSIGNS since 2009, the brand has become one of the country’s largest franchise companies. It has benefited significantly from Monson’s strategic positioning and her franchising and broad business and marketing experience. Since February, Monson has also served as International Franchise Association (IFA) chair. In her role with the IFA, she works to further its mission of protecting and promoting franchising through government relations, public relations, and educational programs.”, FranchiseDictionary, October 2, 2020

Russo’s New York Pizzeria expands in the Middle East with its 8th restaurant opening in Dubai. 8 more outlets planned to open in 2021 with it international franchise partner, Prime Hospitality.

Restaurateur and Loving It! His drive-thrus report record sales during Covid: Dennis Ekstrom has been in the restaurant business for nearly 50 years, 30 of them in franchising. At one time he was part of QK Holdings, where he served as COO of the largest Denny’s franchise group in the country with 94 locations. Today he is the CEO and president of Diamondback LLC, a Del Taco multi-unit operator in New Mexico. ‘The restaurant industry is a fast-paced, invigorating field that I never left,’ says the 65-year-old today. His experience and success have led him to rule the Del Taco market in New Mexico where his 11 locations rank in the top tier of the brand’s comp growth. The drive-thru lanes at Ekstrom’s Del Tacos were paved with gold this past spring as Covid-19 ravaged the country’s restaurant landscape. He says 90 percent of his sales during the pandemic have come from the drive-thru. ‘Right now, our sales are the highest they’ve been in months, and in some cases ever,’ he says.”,, October 4, 2020

Ranked: The 50 Most Popular Fast Food Chains in America: Millions of Americans eat at fast food restaurants every day—and they now have more options at their disposal than ever before. From burgers to pad thai, there’s a quick service restaurant that’ll satisfy almost any appetite. With all this choice, which fast food chains are the most popular among consumers? Using data from QSR Magazine, (the infographic at this link) ranks the top 50 largest fast food chains in the U.S. by sales in 2019, providing insight into the types of foods Americans have been craving.”, Visual Capitalist, September 28, 2020         

Articles And Charts About Doing Business in The Times Of COVID-19 and Beyond

What 800 (global) executives envision for the postpandemic workforce: Responses to a McKinsey global survey of 800 executives suggest a disruptive period of workplace changes lies ahead due to acceleration of automation, digitization, and other trends. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused major disruption to our working lives in the short term, and is likely to change the way that we work in the long term. To understand these changes, McKinsey commissioned a survey of business executives around the world in June 2020. The results suggest that the crisis may accelerate some workforce trends already underway, such as the adoption of automation and digitization, increased demand for contractors and gig workers, and more remote work. Those changes in turn will create greater demand for workers to fill jobs in areas like health and hygiene, cybersecurity, and data analytics.”, McKinsey & Co., September 23, 2020

New Consumer Research on the Increasing Importance of Digital & How the Holiday Shopping Season Is Shaping Up: To help retail brands understand consumer expectations and prepare for the upcoming holiday shopping season, Service Management Group (SMG) collected feedback from nearly 10,000 consumer respondents. Here are three key themes that emerged from the research: 1) Financial concerns are looming; 2) Value will be key this shopping season; 3) Holiday shopping will start early and be dominated by digital.”,, October 2, 2020

The Future of Supply Chain Automation: As Amazon continues to set the bar for efficiency by integrating an astounding spectrum of automation technology, it’s becoming increasingly apparent that traditional supply chain models are ripe for disruption. For this reason, companies around the world are now rethinking their warehouse and distribution systems, with automation taking center stage.”, The infographic at this link from Raconteur highlights the state of automation across global supply chains, while also providing an outlook for future investment, Visual Capitalist

Who We Are And What We Do

Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) provides a complete International solution for U.S. businesses Going Global. From initial global market research and country prioritization, to developing new international markets and providing operational support around the world. Our U.S. based executive team has experience living and working in many countries. Our Associate network on the ground overseas covers 40+ countries. 

Founded in 2001, Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) takes U.S. businesses global and currently has activity in 25 countries. Our Clients are all consumer-faced brands. Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) has twice received the U.S. President’s Award for Export Excellence

Find out more about the services we provide U.S. companies Going Global at:

William Edwards, CFEis CEO and Global Advisor of Edwards Global Services (EGS). He has 46 years of international operations, development, executive and entrepreneurial experience and has lived in 7 countries. With experience in the franchise, oil and gas, information technology and management consulting sectors, he has directed projects on-site in Alaska, Asia, Europe and the Middle and Near East. Mr. Edwards advises a wide range of companies on early to long term global development of their brands.



For global cross-business sectoral updates and advice on taking your business global, contact Mr. Edwards at or +1 949 224 3896. 

EGS Biweekly Global Business Newsletter Issue 12, Tuesday, September 8, 2020

By William (Bill) Edwards, CEO of Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS)

“A man does what he must – in spite of personal consequences, in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures – and that is the basis of all human morality.” Winston Churchill

“Oh yes, the past can hurt. But you can either run from it, or learn from it.”. Rafiki, from ‘The Lion King’

I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”, Thomas A. Edison


This issue is coming out on a Tuesday due to the Monday USA national holiday.

This issue focuses on what is happening in more than 20 countries that impacts new trends, health, consumer spending, business investment and travel. A few highlights:

  • The 40+ sources of information we monitor and curate for this biweekly newsletter are listed below
  • The DLA Piper Guide To Going Global Series for 2020 is a powerful database on how to doing business in 54 countries. August 2020
  • Visualizing The Social Media Universe in 2020 graphically displaying the 21 top social media networks worldwide
  • For much needed fun in these times, scroll down to Sweden: “A Tiny Record Store For Mice Has Arrived In Sweden”
  • Projected World Population 2100: “Will the global population surpass 10 billion by the end of the century?

Sources of Information for the EGS Biweekly Global Business Update Newsletter

We constantly monitor 30+ countries, 40+ international information sources and six business sectors to keep up with what is going on in this ever-changing environment. Our team on the ground covers 43 countries and provides us with updates about what is happening in their specific countries. Please feel free to send us your input and sources of information. Our contact information is at the bottom of this newsletter.

This issue we start off by listing some of information sources we currently monitor worldwide and then curate for our newsletter readers.   Here are the sources we currently monitor:

ABC News, Airline Geeks,, AmCham China, Associated Press, Australian Retail Association, Axios,, The Bangkok Post, Bloomberg, Boston Consulting Group, British Museum Friends, Business Insider,, Conde Nast Traveler, CBS News, CNBC, CNN Traveler, The Daily Mail, The Daily Telegraph, Denver Business Journal, Deutsche Bank Research, District Export Council, The Evening Standard,,, Economist Intelligence Unit, Executive Next Practices (ENP), Fast Company magazine,, Forbes, Fox News,, The Franchise Advisory Centre (Brisbane), Franchise New Zealand magazine, FUNG Business Intelligence Group, The London Guardian, Geopolitical Futures, Global Chamber, The Globe And Mail, Global Franchise magazine,, The Independent,, John Wiley & Sons Legal firm, LinkedIn, Lonely Planet, McKinsey & Company, Mexico Business Daily, Miami Herald, Nation’s Restaurant News, National Geographic, New Zealand Herald,,,, The Singapore Times,, Sky News, South China Morning Post, Stratfor, The London Sunday Times , Tech Republic, Travel + Leisure, The Times of London, Timeout UK,  USA Today, Viator, Visual Capitalist,, The Washington Post, Wilson Perumal & Company, WIRED magazine, World Affairs Council, World Bank, World Economic Forum, Yahoo Finance and 9to5MAC.

Visualizing The Social Media Universe in 2020

“Take a look at how social networks compare in terms of monthly active users (MAUs)—an industry metric widely used to gauge the success of these platforms.”, Visual Capitalist, August 28, 2020

Go to this link to see a graphical presentation on the social media universe today covering the 21 largest social media networks and their details.

International Travel Updates

“Just How Risky Is It To Fly In A Pandemic? Although borders are now open between some countries and domestic flights available, many travelers are still afraid to fly. The thought of being in an enclosed space like an aircraft with a bunch of strangers can seem counter-intuitive, despite all the reassurances from airlines. Studies have been done about the spread of disease in the past, but documented cases of passengers contracting a serious illness on an aircraft are rare. Before COVID-19, there were also no flights where everyone, including the crew, was wearing a mask or such care was taken over cleaning the aircraft. A study from scientists led by Professor Arnold Barnett at MIT recently looked into the risk of catching COVID-19 on a flight.”, Forbes, August 27, 2020

“United CEO says air travel demand will roar back once there’s a coronavirus vaccine: “We’ve got a tough year ahead until there’s a vaccine,” Kirby answered. ‘The good news is, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.’ This is the world of Kirby a little over 100 days into his tenure as CEO. Despite aggressive cost cuts, United is still burning through an estimated $40 million every single day. The airline has parked about 40% of its fleet and could cut up to 36,000 jobs starting Oct. 1. As bleak as the outlook is for United and the airline industry as a whole, Kirby believes demand will come roaring back once there’s a vaccine for Covid-19.”, CNBC, August 31, 2020

“How Airports, Hotels, and Restaurants Are Embracing the New Normal: Once-familiar spaces have seen big changes in the past few months. Even more innovations are coming soon — and that’s nothing but a good thing. If you ventured out recently, you already know the drill: masks, gloves, and hand sanitizer, plus plexiglass screens and more frequent cleaning at airports, hotels, and restaurants. But deeper changes will soon complement the quickly implemented hygiene protocols and MacGyver-style hacks introduced this spring and summer.”, Travel + Leisure, September 7, 2020

“How clean is the air on planes? High-tech filters and low-tech masks: How technology and personal responsibility might make flying safer than you think….. Thanks to HEPA filters and efficient circulation on commercial aircrafts, the air you breathe in flight—though not necessarily entirely virus-free—is much cleaner than the air in restaurants, bars, stores, or your best friend’s living room. Here’s why you don’t need to fear the air up there.’, National Geographic, August 28, 2020

“SAS Set to Operate Entire Network This Fall: Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) is slated to boost the number of flights it will operate and reinstate more destinations in Europe, the U.S. and Asia throughout autumn as the airline continues to see a rise in demand for travel and transport to, from and within Scandinavia. Scandinavia’s ‘domestic”’ flights — those within Sweden, Norway and Denmark — will cover almost the airline’s entire pre-COVID-19 network when it resumes flights from Stavanger, Norway to Trondheim, Norway and from Stockholm to Ronneby and Sundsvall, both in Sweden. With the flight expansion, SAS will increase accessibility and maintain essential air service to small communities in Scandinavia.”, Airline Geeks, August 31, 2020

“China calls for U.S. visitors to show negative COVID-19 tests: China will demand that passengers taking direct flights from the U.S. provide negative coronavirus test results within 72 hours before takeoff starting Sept. 15, China’s U.S. embassy said in a statement. People who transit in the U.S. ahead of a flight to China will be asked to submit health declarations to airlines or hold a green health code, per the statement.”, Axios, September 5, 2020

“American, Delta and United plan to add 15 long-haul international routes in September: American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and United Airlines will resume as many as 15 long-haul international routes in September, even as the return of flights during the coronavirus pandemic slows. If schedules hold, Accra (ACC), Barcelona (BCN), Buenos Aires (EZE), Lagos (LOS), Mumbai (BOM) and Rome (FCO) are all due to see their first U.S. airline-operated flights since the pandemic began. However, as in months past, the plans remain subject to change until flights are actually in the air. For example, American and United’s flights to Hong Kong remain suspended due to local COVD-19 testing concerns. The Star Alliance carrier has postponed plans to add flights between Chicago O’Hare (ORD) and Hong Kong this month after a more than year-long hiatus.”, The Points Guy, September 2, 2020

“Airlines urge UK, U.S. to start London-New York passenger testing trial: Major airlines want the U.S. and British governments to launch a passenger testing trial for the coronavirus for flights between London and New York to pave the way for a resumption of more international travel. In a letter to government transportation officials seen by Reuters, the chief executives of Airlines for America, Airlines UK, Heathrow Airport and Virgin Atlantic Airways said both governments should “establish passenger testing solutions in air travel. ‘We believe that in the immediate absence of a vaccine, testing of passengers in aviation provides the best and most effective frontline defense.’ They urged the governments to establish a testing trial between New York and London by month’s end ‘to gather real world evidence and data.’”, Reuters, September 3, 2020

“Etihad to provide COVID-19 insurance to passengers to boost travel confidence: Abu Dhabi’s Etihad Airways on Monday said it would cover medical and quarantine costs for passengers if they contract the new coronavirus after traveling on one of its flights. Medical costs of up to 150,000 euros ($177,000) and quarantine costs of up to 100 euro a day for 14 days will be covered by Etihad for its passengers who contract the disease within 31 days of first travel.”, Reuters, September 6, 2020

“United Places Bets on Latin America, Hawaii in October Schedule: United will fly 46% of its 2019 domestic schedule in October – compared to 38% in September – and 33% of its October 2019 international schedule, compared with 29% in September.”, Airline Geeks, September 5, 2020

Asean Countries

 “Reimagining emerging ASEAN in the wake of COVID-19: A focus on five key levers could both accelerate the region’s recovery and make the gains more enduring….. McKinsey’s research on emerging ASEAN countries explored a series of trends that the pandemic has caused or accelerated. Within these trends lie the potential recipe for recovery, but stakeholders must be prepared to reimagine their country’s economy. Five key levers—manufacturing hubs, green infrastructure, investments in digital, talent reskilling, and high-value food industries—could not only speed up the economic recovery in these countries but also lay the foundation for extended growth.”, McKinsey & Company, September 2, 2020


“Australia extends ban on people leaving the country until December: Australian citizens and permanent residents will have been barred from leaving for almost nine months by the end of the year. The “Human Biosecurity Emergency Period” has been in place since March and prevents Australian citizens or permanent residents from leaving the nation’s shores. It can only be circumvented with permission from the government, which must be approved beforehand.”, Sky News, September 3, 2020

“Metcash reaps benefits as consumers shop more locally: Metcash says sales continue to benefit from the change in consumer behaviour since the advent of Covid-19.  Chairman Robert Murray said consumers have been shopping more in their local neighbourhoods since the advent of Covid-19, bringing new customers to independent Metcash businesses which the company is focusing on ensuring they are retained in the future.  In a trading update released at its annual meeting today, CEO Jeff Adams said total sales are up 11.4 per cent in the first quarter of the new trading year, with supermarket sales – excluding tobacco – up by 13.8 per cent.”, Insider Retail Australia, August 26, 2020

“NSW Court offers retailers extended rent relief: The New South Wales supreme court has ruled that retailers could be eligible for a further six months of support after the mandatory code of conduct expires in October. Thousands of small businesses could be impacted by the decision, which found landlords cannot effectively kick a tenant out of a premises until after a “reasonable subsequent recovery period”, which could range as far as six months. The decision was handed down on a case between retailer Sneakerboy and its landlord Georges Properties, in which Sneakerboy was found to have been unfairly removed from its store and had its lease terminated.”, Inside Retail Australia, September 2, 2020


“Brazil manufacturing PMI hits record high 64.7 in August: IHS Markit: Brazilian manufacturing expanded at a record pace in August, a survey of purchasing managers’ activity showed on Tuesday, extending its solid recovery from the COVID-19 crisis as new orders rose to new peaks and employment hit a 10-year high. IHS Markit’s headline Brazil manufacturing purchasing managers index (PMI) jumped to 64.7 in August from the previous all-time high of 58.2 in July, the highest level since the index was first compiled in February 2006.”, Reuters, September 1, 2020


“Canada Extends Foreign Travel Ban And Coronavirus Quarantine Restrictions: On Friday, Public Safety Minister Bill Blair announced via Twitter that the Canadian federal government has decided to extend travel restrictions by at least an additional month to curb the spread of the coronavirus. The restrictions will be extended until September 30 and could even be extended again. Originally the quarantine mandate was set to expire on August 31. In his tweet, Blair stated that: ‘Our government is extending the existing restrictions on international travel to Canada by one month – until September 30, 2020 – to limit the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in our communities.’ He went on to tweet ‘Canadian citizens and permanent residents returning to Canada will continue to be subject to strict quarantine measures.’”. Forbes, September 2, 2020

“Canada to extend rent-relief program for small businesses: Globe and Mail: The Canadian government will extend its coronavirus rent-relief program for small businesses into September, the Globe and Mail reported late on Saturday, citing sources familiar with the policy discussions. The Canada Emergency Commercial Rent Assistance Program offered loans to landlords of entrepreneurs worth half the tenant’s rent from April through August, if tenants pay a quarter and the landlord absorbs the remaining quarter.”, Reuters, September 6, 2020


“Chile central bank softens 2020 recession projection, expects stabilization: Chile’s central bank on Wednesday softened its prediction for an economic contraction in 2020 due to the impact of the coronavirus on the world’s top copper producer to between -4.5% and -5.5% from the 5.5% and 7.5% contraction it foresaw in June.”, Reuters, September 2, 2020

Mainland China

“Fast-food chain Yum China bags $2bn in Hong Kong listing: Chinese operator of KFC and Pizza Hut prices shares in latest ‘homecoming’ offering. Yum China has raised more than $2bn from a secondary share sale in Hong Kong, marking the latest ‘homecoming’ listing by a major US-listed Chinese company…Total proceeds of HK$17.3bn ($2.2bn) would be spent on expanding the company’s restaurant network and investing in ‘digitalisation,’ it said.”, The Financial Times, September 4, 2020

“U.S. Businesses’ Commitment To China Market “Strong And Intact”: Forbes China Forum: A long-term commitment by U.S. businesses to China’s market is ‘quite strong and intact’ despite currently strained political ties between the two countries, a former China diplomat and business association leader (Kenneth Jarrett) said at the ‘U.S.-China Business Forum’ organized by Forbes China on Wednesday.”, Russel Flannery, Forbes, August 28, 2020

“China’s service industries catching up as life returns to normal after coronavirus shock wave slammed economy: August’s official non-manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) jumped to 55.2 from 54.2 in July, reaching the highest level since January 2018. The rise was driven by the service sector, which climbed to 54.3 in August from 53.1 in July as cinemas and hotels have slowly returned to normal operations.”, South China Morning Post, August 31, 2020

 “The Chinese consumer: Resilient and confident: Two China-based McKinsey partners impart advice on how companies can succeed in China’s fast-recovering consumer market. Even as many parts of the world continue to battle the COVID-19 crisis and its knock-on effects, much of China has reopened: people are going out, streets are bustling, and businesses have resumed almost-normal operations. In this episode of the McKinsey on Consumer and Retail podcast, McKinsey’s Felix Poh and Daniel Zipser discuss the present and future of the Chinese consumer sector. An edited transcript of their conversation with executive editor Monica Toriello is below (at this link).”, McKinsey & Company, September 3, 2020

“China’s Exports Ramp Up as Countries Emerge From Lockdowns: Outbound shipments rose 9.5% in August from a year earlier, picking up pace from the previous month and beating economist forecasts. August marked the third consecutive month that China’s exports outpaced those of the same month last year. It marks a stark turnaround from the start of the year, when the pandemic crippled China’s factories and global shipping networks.”, The Wall Street Journal, September 7, 2020

Sign of the Times: “Guidelines for Emergency Response and Business Continuity Management of Chain Operation Enterprises, a Public Solicitation of Comments”. The China Chain Store and Franchise Association (CCFA) has asked affected businesses for comments on how best for the government to help such businesses cope with “Business interruptions caused by sudden natural disasters, external services or sudden internal operations, etc., will bring huge risks and even significant impacts on corporate operations.”, Paul Jones, Jones & Co., Toronto


“Avianca Resumes Operations in Colombia: Avianca announced that on September 1 the carrier will return to the Colombian skies, connecting from Bogotá to destinations such as Barranquilla, Bucaramanga, Cali, Cartagena, Cúcuta, Medellín, Montería, Pereira and San Andrés; From September 7 it will restart operations from Bogotá to Pasto, Santa Marta and Villavicencio, and from Medellín to Cali and Cartagena. The company will apply strict biosecurity protocols that have already been successfully tested on more than 330 special flights transporting more than 34,380 people. Operations will begin with only 12% of what was before COVID-19. The carrier expects that demand and the need for connectivity will rise quickly. In the same way, it will adapt its itineraries, routes and frequencies to the extent that the activation scheme designed by the Civil Aeronautics allows it.”, Airline Geeks, August 29, 2020

Dominican Republic

 “Dominican Republic Eliminates Mandatory COVID-19 Tests, Adds Free Insurance As Part of New Tourism Recovery Plan: The new policies will go into effect on Sept. 15. With many Caribbean nations competing for the economic boost of much-needed tourism dollars, the Dominican Republic made some policy changes to make visiting the island a bit easier. As part of its newly announced “Responsible Tourism Recovery Plan,” visitors will no longer be required to show proof of a negative COVID-19 test in order to enter the country, starting Sept. 15. Additionally, mass testing will not be performed at the airport upon arrival, but will instead be done at random.”, Travel + Leisure, September 3, 2020


“Back to school: how European classrooms are coping with COVID: Schools across Europe are reopening as summer break ends and governments insist that students return to the classroom after months of online learning due to the coronavirus pandemic. Countries are taking different approaches to minimise contagion in schools….”, Reuters, September 1, 2020


“France Tightens Mask Protocols Amid Gain in Virus Infections: More than 7,000 new cases were reported on Friday, the most since the nation was under a strict lockdown. For the moment, the number of deaths and hospitalizations remains relatively low, with young adults making up the bulk of new contaminations. Still, the French government isn’t taking any chances. From Tuesday, masks will be mandatory for companies with groups working in enclosed spaces, Labor Minister Elisabeth Borne said Sunday on BFM TV. While opera singers are among those who can be granted exemptions, mask-wearing is becoming entrenched in daily life. Cities from Paris to Marseilles are making masks compulsory, even outside, while students over 11 years old will have to cover their faces when returning to school next month.”, Bloomberg, August 30, 2020


“Germany Expects V-Shaped Economic Rebound From Coronavirus: After experiencing one of the world’s mildest Covid-19 epidemics, Germany is experiencing a faster-than-expected recovery. Germany’s factories and offices remained open during the coronavirus lockdown, which helped to cushion the country’s economy. The country’s gross domestic product should contract by 5.8% this year, a 0.5 percentage-point improvement on earlier forecasts and on par with the decline recorded in the wake of the 2008 financial crisis, the economy ministry said on Tuesday.”, The Wall Street Journal, September 1, 2020


“India’s turning point: An economic agenda to spur growth and jobs: A clarion call is sounding for India to put growth on sustainably faster track and meet the aspirations of it growing workforce.”, McKinsey & Company, August 26, 2020


“Irish pubs make plea to reopen as they endure longest shutdown in Europe: Publicans are demanding the urgent reopening of bars across Ireland, which is now the only country in the EU imposing their closure for health reasons. Ireland’s pubs were shut in March, as coronavirus case numbers began to rise. On 29 June, pubs that could serve a “substantial meal” valued at €9 (£8) were allowed to reopen, subject to strict conditions. However, vintners estimate that 60% of pubs (which don’t serve food and are known as “wet pubs”) remain shut, with owners incurring increasing debt, and with thousands of job losses across the sector.”, Sky News, September 6, 2020


“Israel has a population of 9 Million inhabitants. 75% are Jewish, 20% Arab and the remaining 5% Christian. The Israel Economy is strong and stable. Often referred to as the “Start Up Nation”, Israel, enjoyed an  unemployment rate of 3.8% in 2019, with a GDP per capita of $42,000. Despite the woes of the Covid-19 Pandemic, the Israeli economy will still increase by 3% this year, with its currency (New Israeli Shekel) still very stable. Like in many other countries, the job market in Israel during the Covid-19 crisis has been challenged, but Steven Wolfson, EGS associate for Israel, believes that this is actually good for the growing franchising due to easy access of government funding being pumped into the small and medium business sector. Lastly, the recent normalisation of diplomatic ties between Israel and the UAE will open up many more doors, especially from global brands, heavily invested in the UAE, who were previously hesitant to do business with Israel. This may lead to a new era of global business opportunities for not only Israel, but the Middles East as a whole.


“Pope has first live audience with pilgrims in six months: A maskless Pope Francis greeted pilgrims at his first general audience with the public in six months this morning, as the Vatican starts a slow return to normality. The pope kept about a yard back as he spoke to some of the 500 people present, who lined up behind a barrier. Smiling, he said he was happy to restart ‘our face-to-face, rather than screen-to-screen meetings’.”, The Sunday Times of London September 2, 2020


“’Tokyo Olympics Will Take Place Next Year ‘With Or Without Covid,’ Says IOC VP: The Tokyo Summer Olympics will go forward despite the coronavirus, International Olympic Committee Vice President John Coates told Agence France-Presse Monday, as Olympics officials still scramble to figure out what the postponed summer games will look like amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Coates said the summer games will start as planned on July 23, 2021 “with or without Covid,” after being postponed for a year amid the pandemic.”, Forbes, September 7, 2020

“Students in Japan return to in-person, but socially distanced classes: While the coronavirus pandemic is keeping many American students at home, children in Japan are back in the classroom. Schools there have been able to reopen because Japan, with about one-third of the U.S. population, has only 1% as many COVID-19 cases.”, CBS News, September 5th, 2020

South Korea

An Insider’s View. Been on the ground in Korea for 12+ days. COVID 2.5 restrictions in place, 2nd typhoon in 2 weeks, but tackling business as usual. No lack of exciting projects. As a friend shared it’s all about having an insider’s view and connections. Don Southerton, LinkedIn, September 2, 2020

New Zealand

“International research involving New Zealanders has found two commonly used drugs help save critically ill patients with Covid-19. To avoid the uncomfortable nasal swabs, Air New Zealand want their crew to take saliva tests for the virus instead. Numbers show they have similar accuracy rates to nasal swabs. And a Nobel Prize-winning economist has labelled New Zealand’s method of response to the pandemic, which he describes as the exact opposite to America’s, as the best in the world.”, New Zealand Herald, September 3, 2020, compliments of Stewart Germann, Stewart German Law Offices, Auckland


“A Tiny Record Store For Mice Has Arrived In Sweden: Ricotta Records is the latest installation from mouse-loving art collective AnonyMouse, which calls itself “a loosely connected network of mice and men”, originally from the city of Malmö in southern Sweden. AnonyMouse started building miniature installations for mice in 2016. Since then, the wacky team of ultra-secretive Swedish creatives has unveiled more than 25 projects, including Hair and Furever barbershop, a shelter named Paw to Paw, an Italian bistro called Il Topolino that serves cheese and crackers (what else?), French-inspired nut shop Noix de Vie (or Nuts of Life), boasting every mouse’s favorite treats of hazelnuts, pistachios, and almonds, as well as Paneer Indian restaurant, The Stilton Hotel, Frankie and Benjy’s bookstore, the Moles Antiques, and an entire amousement park.”, Forbes, September 2, 2020

United Arab Emirates

“Emirates (Airlines) To Receive $2 billion State Aid Package: In the midst of massive layoffs and reorganizations of aircraft orders, Emirates has secured a bailout that will give the company some momentary peace of mind. An aid package of 7.3 billion dirhams, or about $ 2 billion, was granted to Emirates by Dubai’s government, which further reported in a document that it is ready to send more aid to the airline. ‘Any additional support will be subject to the requirements of the airline and will depend on the impact and duration of the current situation of the Covid-19 pandemic,’ the government’s statement said, per a Reuters report.’, Airline Geeks, September 1, 2020

United Kingdom

“Spending surge lifts services at fastest rate for five years: A surge in spending strengthened the services sector last month, but did not stop companies from laying off more staff owing to fears about tough times to come with the end of government support schemes. The UK services sector grew at its fastest rate in more than five years in August, rising to 59.1 from 57.0 in July.”, The Sunday Times of London, September 3, 2020

“Rush hour returns: traffic up in major cities: Rush-hour congestion rose in many cities today as schools reopened and commuters returned to the office. An analysis of road data showed that traffic worsened in more than half of the UK’s biggest cities this morning compared with the previous week, despite continuing high rates of home working across the UK. In London vehicles suffered delays of 36 per cent during today’s rush hour, a rise from 31 per cent a week earlier. In Nottingham, levels of congestion increased from 27 per cent last week to 49 per cent this morning. However, the figures from TomTom made it clear that towns and cities remain significantly quieter than before the pandemic. It suggests that the government’s repeated calls for people to return to the workplace to boost urban economies were still largely being shunned.”, The Sunday Times of London, September 1, 2020

“Amazon to create 10,000 jobs: Amazon is taking advantage of the surge in online shopping during lockdown to expand in Britain. It plans to create 10,000 permanent jobs over the coming months after increasing its hiring during the lockdown.  Amazon, America’s third-largest company, has already hired 3,000 new employees this year and plans to take on a further 7,000 by the end of the year, increasing its headcount in the UK to 40,000. The new positions would include engineers, human resources staff, IT experts, health and safety and finance specialists, as well as workers to pick, pack and ship customer orders.”, The Times of London, September 3, 2020

“With hand-wash and emotional support, pupils return to London school: Primary school children returning to the Harris Academy in London on Thursday will find themselves sitting in rows, regularly washing their hands and supported by teachers who have been trained to provide emotional support after lockdown. Children started to return to schools this week – for many the first time they have been back in full-time education since the spread of COVID-19 forced classes to shut in March. To prevent large gatherings, schools are staggering arrivals, keeping pupils in smaller groups, controlling where they walk in communal areas and requiring the provision of water bottles and pencil cases to prevent sharing. Desks are likely to be placed in rows so pupils do not sit in groups on a table.”, Reuters, September 3, 2020

“Manufacturing recovers amid job loss fears: Output at British manufacturers grew at the fastest pace in more than six years last month, underpinned by the fastest increase in new orders since November 2017. The upturn in domestic demand and signs of recovering exports was put down to the easing of Covid-19 restrictions by the August manufacturing purchasing managers’ index. The index rose to 55.2 from 53.3 in July, the third month of growth it shrank to a record low of 32.6 in April and to 40.7 in May. On the downside, companies remained cautious about hiring staff, with job losses recorded for the seventh month in a row. Business leaders and economists fear more jobs could be lost when the government’s furlough scheme ends at the end of October.”, The Times of London, September 1, 2020

United States

“These restaurant chains are unveiling new designs inspired by the pandemic: Taco Bell, Shake Shack and Burger King are among the restaurant chains who have introduced new designs inspired by the pandemic and its impact on consumer behavior. Among the new features in these designs are more drive-thru lanes. Visits to drive-thrus skyrocketed by 26% in April, May and June, according to data from the NPD Group. Other chains are accelerating plans to update their store formats with a focus on convenience.”, CNBC, September 5, 2020

“California Theme Parks Ready To Reopen With Proper COVID Guidelines: Disneyland, Seaworld, and Universal have announced that they are prepared to open as soon as California health officials provide the necessary requirements and safety guidelines. Josh D’Amaro, chairman of Disney’s parks, products and experiences unit, said the company is waiting for the green light, according to USA Today. “As soon as a date and those guidelines are set, I can tell you, we’re ready,” D’Amaro told Roger Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association trade group Tuesday. All properties including Knott’s Berry Farm have been able to open select shops and dining, but all attractions and rides continue to be closed. Disneyland was prepared to open July 17th, but had to postpone due to spiking coronavirus numbers. All theme parks have been closed since March.”,, August 27, 2020, compliments of a LinkedIn post by Doug Gabbard.

“Top 10 Fastest, Biggest, Most In U.S. Trade (Without A Peep About China): And now, 10 of the “fastest,” “biggest” and “most” in the most recent U.S. trade data. After all, we could all use a little good news now and again, no? So, here we go.  A story about U.S. trade with Switzerland, Vietnam, Hungary, Cambodia, Sweden, Denmark, Australia, Mexico, Honduras and Saudi Arabia. But not a word about China.”, Forbes, September 6, 2020

“8 Countries Americans Can Visit Right Now:  To the jetsetters, family vacationers, romantic retreaters, solo voyagers, spring breakers, and everyone who’s travel plans have been interrupted by COVID-19: We feel your pain. While you can’t take an epic Italy or Greece getaway yet, there are still some great options available to venture beyond American borders. If you need to get your wanderlust fix ASAP (or just want some inspiration for the future), we’ve rounded up a few countries to consider.”, Trip Advisor & Viator, September 3, 2020

“New York City Gyms Reopen for First Time Since Pandemic: Crunch, Equinox and others resume operations with ramped up hygiene, health-screening efforts. New York City gyms reopened Wednesday after a five-month lockdown brought about by the novel coronavirus pandemic, giving stir-crazy New Yorkers a long-awaited chance to hit the treadmills and free weights inside. Gyms were among the last businesses in the state to be given the approval to resume operations. Gov. Andrew Cuomo had indefinitely delayed the reopening of gyms in June, citing concerns about the spread of the coronavirus in states that had brought them back. But after several weeks of low transmission throughout the state, the governor said in mid-August that he felt comfortable allowing gyms to reopen at significantly reduced capacity.”, The Wall Street Journal, September 2, 2020

Articles And Charts About Doing Business in The Times Of COVID-19 and Beyond

The DLA Piper Guide To Going Global Series for 2020 is a powerful database on how to doing business in 54 countries. August 2020

Projected World Population 2100: “Will the global population surpass 10 billion by the end of the century? All signs have pointed to yes – until now. Steadily rising estimates from the United Nations have typically been the status quo. However, recent research from the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) suggest that the global population may actually start shrinking well before 2100.”  Visual Capitalist, September 2, 2020

Possible Changes by 2100: China = 732 million and India = 1.09 billion. Detailed chart at this link

A timely update to the Global Complexity Index 2 done by Wilson Perumal & Company

“4 Methods to Enhance Intentionality at Work: Working harder than ever but getting less done? Then it’s time to incorporate these purposeful practices.”,, Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO), compliments of a LinkedIn Post by Lauren Ellermeyer.

“How Organizations Need To Manage Supply Chain Risk Today: In modern multi-tier supply chains, sourcing needs and production processes are often spread across hundreds of suppliers operating in multiple countries to maximize economic efficiency, usually at the cost of greater transparency and resilience. Market volatility caused by COVID-19, alongside sweeping regulatory changes, has driven companies across various industries to urgently re-evaluate their complex global supply chains to gain control of new and significant supplier risks quickly. Supply chain diversity is essential for successful business operations, but it’s critical that companies evaluate and understand the risk associated with current and potential suppliers in their physical and digital supply chains.”, Forbes, September 7, 2020

Who We Are And What We Do

Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) provides a complete International solution for U.S. businesses Going Global. From initial global market research and country prioritization, to developing new international markets and providing operational support around the world. Our U.S. based executive team has experience living and working in many countries. Our Associate network on the ground overseas covers 40+ countries.

Founded in 2001, Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) takes U.S. businesses global and currently has activity in 25 countries.  Our Clients are all consumer-faced brands.  Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) has twice received the U.S. President’s Award for Export Excellence

Find out more about the services we provide U.S. companies Going Global at:

William Edwards, CFE, is CEO and Global Advisor of Edwards Global Services (EGS). William Edwards has 46 years of international operations, development, executive and entrepreneurial experience and has lived in 7 countries.   With experience in the franchise, oil and gas, information technology and management consulting sectors, he has directed projects on-site in Alaska, Asia, Europe and the Middle and Near East.  Mr. Edwards advises a wide range of companies on early to long term global development of their brands.

For global cross business sectoral updates and advice, contact Mr. Edwards at or +1 949 224 3896.

EGS Biweekly Global Business Newsletter Issue 11, Monday, August 24, 2020

By William (Bill) Edwards, CEO of Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS)

 “I always like to look on the optimistic side of life, but I am realistic enough to know that life is a complex matter”, Walt Disney

“Without dreams and goals there is no living, only merely existing, and that is not why we are here”, Anonymous, Compliments of Karl Morningstar in a LinkedIn post on August 19, 2020

“Positive thinking will let you do everything better than negative thinking will”, Zig Ziglar


We constantly monitor 30+ countries, 25 daily international information sources and six business sectors to keep up with what is going on in this ever-changing environment. Our team on the ground covers 43 countries and provides us with updates about what is happening in their specific countries.

Many of our newsletter readers send us their input and perspectives to help us publish a balanced overview about the world every other week.  Our contact information is at the bottom of this newsletter.

Highlights In This Issue

This issue focuses on what is happening in more than 20 countries that impacts new trends, health, consumer spending, business investment and travel. A few highlights:

  • Several countries in the Americas, Asia and Europe that have reopened are seeing COVID-19 cases rise
  • Countries are struggling to decide how to reopen schools
  • The UK economy has sprung back to life with July retail sale volumes higher than last year
  • S. movie theaters reopen this weekend, but it’s unclear if audiences will return
  • In the articles section to get a link to a daily updating country COVID cases chart

Where and Where Not Countries are Reopening Businesses

Many countries that started reopening businesses in late June are now seeing new COVID-19 cases as shopping and eating out increases. In most cases, the increases are due to people not wearing masks or social distancing despite there being laws that say they must do so. Nevertheless, consumers are spending in these countries, airports are functioning and business continues.

2020 Consumer Types – Who They Are and How They Live – Euromonitor

“Understanding what consumers are driven by, how they live and shop are key factors which businesses need to consider when approaching consumers. This webinar explores 11 key consumer types from lifestyle choices to buying habits and how each category is reacting to the current pandemic.”, AMRUTHA SHRIDHAR, Research Consultant – Consumer Insights, Euromonitor International, August 2020

Feeling optimistic: 71% of microbusiness owners expect to recover from COVID-19 financial hit within a year

“Feeling optimistic: 71% of microbusiness owners expect to recover from COVID-19 financial hit within a year: Revenue is down for 75% of small businesses, but business owners are equally confident that recovery will happen within a year, according to a new survey by GoDaddy. The “2020 Global Entrepreneurship Survey” included 5,265 small business owners around the world and measured the impact COVID-19 on microbusinesses, including business operations, finance, recovery, technology, and charitable giving. This survey was conducted by research firm Savanta in June 2020. The research surveyed 5,265 small business owners in Australia, Canada, Germany, India, Mexico, Philippines, Spain, Turkey, the United Kingdom, and the US. In the US, the survey included 500 small business owners with 25 or fewer employees.”, Tech Republic, August 19, 2020

3D Mapping The Largest Population Density Centers

Please visit the link below to see some amazing population density 3D maps around the world. Especially look at the difference between cities in China and the USA. 95% of the world’s consumers are outside the USA.  These 3D maps tell where these customers are around the world.

International Travel Updates

“How COVID-19 Is Continuing to Change the Way We Fly: The design of airplanes won’t be all that different from what we’re used to, but the feeling of being on them sure will. While airplanes offer less room for change—literally—than airports, the passenger experience in the air will get a makeover to rival the one on the ground. The first change fliers will notice, of course, will be the mandatory face masks…. The aviation consultancy Simpliflying predicts that the jet bridge will do double duty as a disinfection tunnel, misting passengers with a sanitizing spray. On board, fliers will find changes to cabins designed to assuage their concerns… Planes will also have new crew members. Both Etihad Airways and Turkish Airlines now have hygiene experts who act as health inspectors and ensure that fliers are following health protocols. (No mask? No seat.) An in-flight janitor, responsible for disinfecting high-traffic, high-touch areas like the lavatory, will also become the norm….”, Conde Nast Traveler, August/September magazine issue.

“Delta Air Lines to resume 50 international routes: Delta Air Lines announced Friday it will resume 50 international flight routes — all to Asian countries — this winter and into 2021.

Among the restored flights will be from Seattle to Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing and Shanghai.”, Fox Business, August 21, 2020

“Airlines amplify cleaning in coronavirus fight: American, Delta double down with new protocol: wo major airlines are doubling down with enhanced cleaning protocol to amplify aircraft cabin sanitization in the fight against COVID-19. American Airlines and Delta Air Lines are augmenting current protocol with respective new measures, Reuters reports, as carriers vie to boost consumer confidence in commercial air travel amid the ongoing outbreak.”, Fox Business, August 24, 2020

“IATA Medical Advisor Reports Studies Concluding Air Travel Is Still Safe: The collapse of demand for air travel that has invested the airline industry following the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has two main drivers: the restrictions to international mobility imposed by governments to curb the spread of the disease and the natural fear of prospective travelers to spend many hours in a confined space in close proximity to total strangers. While travel bans are largely outside the control of airline operators, there is a lot the industry can do to educate the traveling public about the real risks involved in getting on an aircraft. Since general prevention measures have pivoted mainly on physical distancing and the need to maintain a distance of at least 3-6 feet between people, air travel is seen as incompatible with this requirement.”, Airline Geeks, August 23, 2020

“Singapore to allow New Zealand, Brunei visitors in first border easing: Singapore on Friday said it would reopen its borders to visitors from New Zealand and Brunei from next month, in the city-state’s first steps towards resuming leisure travel since it sealed its borders to control COVID-19 outbreaks. The city-state, which currently only allows official and business travel to selected countries, also said it would allow students to travel for study overseas if distance-learning was not available. The measures would take effect on Sept. 1, with various restrictions, the health ministry said.”, Reuters, August 21, 2020

“Prices plunge as tourists turn their backs on foreign holidays: Holiday prices to Greece and Turkey have dropped by almost 30 per cent as nervous Britons begin to turn their backs on international tourism. Travel companies are offering heavily discounted trips overseas as industry experts said that fears of quarantine being introduced at 30 hours’ notice were putting off holidaymakers. Research by Travel Supermarket, a comparison site, found that on average the cost of holidays to Greece and Turkey, where there is no quarantine, have fallen by an average of 28 per cent. A week in Italy has dipped by more than 50 per cent.”, The Sunday Times of London, August 15, 2020

“Qatar Airways Continues UK Expansion: Qatar Airways (QR) announced today that it would continue to rebuild its UK network by adding London Gatwick (LGW) back on its destination list for the first time. The decision comes after UK and worldwide restrictions on flights during the COVID-19 Pandemic lockdown start to ease. With this announcement, it will now see the carrier increase its UK network to four destinations with more to follow. This is a good sign, as restrictions to certain countries around the world continue to be eased.”, Airways, August 14, 2020

“Airbnb Has Banned House Parties Indefinitely: Groups of more than 16 will have to book elsewhere. Now, the company is taking its tactics a step further, officially and indefinitely banning house parties at all future Airbnb bookings across the globe. With bars and restaurants in stages of reopening around the country, ‘some have chosen to take bar and club behavior to homes, sometimes rented through our platform,’ says Airbnb in a statement.”, Conde Nast Traveler, August 20, 2020

“JetBlue confirmed its much-anticipated London flights will be delayed: JetBlue Airways CEO Robin Hayes confirmed to Bloomberg on Thursday that the airline’s launch of transatlantic flights will be delayed to late-2021. Flights to London from New York and Boston were announced in April 2019 with new planes ordered to fly the routes.”, Business Insider, August 17, 2020

Latin America

“Latin America: The global epicenter of COVID-19: The number of COVID-19 cases in Latin America and the Caribbean has positioned the region as the global epicenter of the virus. Health professionals and regional experts are warning that if nothing is done, the region will see major setbacks, including a massive rise in poverty and a rise in authoritarianism, as leaders see an opportunity to crackdown on dissent. Latin America, which accounts for 8% of the world population, has reported nearly 30% of the global fatalities.”, CBS News, August 14, 2020


“Shopping Centre Council warns landlords can’t keep supporting rent: Nationwide rental assistance to retailers has eclipsed $1.6 billion, according to the Shopping Centre Council of Australia, with the largest level of support given to cafes and restaurants, followed by retailers such as hairdressers, beauty salons and nail bars. The relief data was released by the Council to give a “real dollar value” to the support it has extended to the retail industry – and to say that it’s unlikely shopping centre owners can continue to do so.”, Inside Retail, August 14, 2020. Compliments of Jason Gehrke, Managing Director, The Franchise Advisory Centre, Brisbane

The Caribbean

“Cayman Islands says no cruises allowed for the rest of 2020: The Cayman Islands, a once-popular destination within the cruise industry, has announced that it will be closing itself to cruise tourism until the end of this year. This news comes as international cruise lines have only just started to return to the waters.’< Fox News, August 18, 2020

Mainland China

“China Eases Entry Rules for Citizens of 36 European Countries: China has relaxed entry restrictions for some European countries’ citizens with valid residence permits, offering a route back into the country for thousands of people displaced by border closures and cancelled flights amid the coronavirus pandemic.”, Caixin Global, August 13, 2020

“US and China to double weekly flights, handing lifeline to grounded carriers facing industry’s worst travel slump: Air China, China Eastern Airlines, China Southern Airlines and Xiamen Airlines will be allowed to double their weekly US services to eight round trips. A day earlier, the Civil Aviation Authority of China (CAAC) gave the green light for Delta Air Lines and United Airlines to increase their weekly China services to two round-trip flights.”, South China Morning Post. August 19, 2020

“United Airlines To Double San Francisco-Shanghai Services: Having resumed its flights to China in June, United Airlines (UA) will now double its San Francisco-Shanghai frequencies. Starting on September 4, the airline will operate four weekly flights using its Boeing 777-300ER aircraft. The services from the US to China will be on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays at 11 am. On the other hand, flights from Shanghai to San Francisco will be Mondays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays at 9:40 pm.”, Airways, August 19, 2020

“Shanghai Disney Resort to increase capacity, update reservation system: Next week will be especially magical at Shanghai Disney Resort, as the Chinese theme park increases daily guest capacity and debuts a simplified reservation system for greater flexibility. Shanghai Disneyland announced the changes on Monday, revealing that the updates will take effect on Aug. 24. In a statement posted to the park’s website, officials cited new guidance from China’s Ministry of Culture and Tourism in allowing the expanded guest capacity; the ministry recently issued a notice allowing tourist sites to bump their operational capacity from 30% to 50%.”, Fox News, August 17, 2020

“Mainland-listed companies’ first-half profits provide a peek into sectors leading China’s economic recovery after Covid-19. Over 55 per cent of the 732 companies that have reported earnings have posted a year on year increase in profits. Companies in sectors such as brokerages, petrochemicals, pharmaceuticals led the pack in terms of profitability.”, South China Morning Post, August 2020

“Premium Retailers Ride China’s Recovery From Covid-19 Crisis: From autos to liquor, higher-end retailers are thriving as Chinese consumers bounce back. The coronavirus pandemic has created a divide in China’s consumer economy, with makers of premium products rebounding strongly but those catering to mass-market consumers finding it tougher to return to growth. Driving the trend: the relative stability of upper middle-class incomes in China throughout the pandemic, with many white-collar workers able to work and ride out the crisis from home. In contrast, up to 80 million Chinese people, mainly lower earners in services and manufacturing, have lost their jobs this year as a result of the pandemic, according to the state-backed Chinese Academy of Social Sciences.”, The Wall Street Journal, August 19, 2020

“Alibaba Quarterly Sales Soar as Concerns Linger Over U.S. Pressure: Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. reported better-than-expected quarterly results as sales rebounded to the pre-pandemic level. But rising policy uncertainties from the U.S. still cast a shadow over its outlook. Alibaba posted 34% year-on-year growth in sales for the quarter ended in June to 153.8 billion yuan ($22.2 billion), beating Wall Street estimates. Net income totaled 47.6 billion yuan, surging 124% from the same period last year. The company said its number of annual active consumers in China rose by 16 million during the June quarter to 742 million.”, Caixing Global, August 21, 2020


A detailed European country update on the status of franchises as we hope to come out of the COVID-19 crisis is available in this recent ‘Global Franchise’ online article.

“Financing the EU’s recovery Increased budget ceiling and (new) EU revenues”, Deutsche Bank Research, August 5, 2020


“France plans masks at work as daily COVID-19 cases surpass 3,000: Employment Minister Elisabeth Borne said she would propose on Tuesday at talks with employer and union representatives that masks be compulsory in collective workspaces. ‘A theme that appears in all scientific opinions is the value of wearing them (masks) when there are several people in a confined space,’ Borne said in an interview with French newspaper Le Journal du Dimanche. Doctors have increasingly called for masks to be required in the workplace while the HCSP, a body advising the government on health policy, issued a recommendation calling for masks to be compulsory in all common indoor spaces.”, Reuters, August 15, 2020


“Greece tells students to wear masks when schools reopen Sept. 7: Greek teachers and students will be required to wear masks in class and indoor spaces when schools reopen in September due to a surge in COVID-19 infections, the country’s education minister said on Monday. The rise in coronavirus cases in recent weeks has forced Greek authorities to gradually reimpose restrictions to curb the spread of COVID-19.”, Reuters, August 24, 2020

On Sunday, Greece reported 284 new cases, a new daily record since its first case surfaced in February. In total, the country has registered 8,664 COVID-19 infections and 242 deaths.


“Visitors to Iceland Will Now Have to Get Tested for COVID-19 Twice, and Quarantine in Between: Visitors can also chose to skip the tests by staying in quarantine for 14 days. Visitors to the country will now be required to get tested twice: once upon arrival and then a second time a few days later, quarantining for five to six days in between, according to the country’s Directorate of Health.”, Travel & Leisure, August 21, 2020


“On 7 August we opened a pop-up store in Fukuoka airport located on Kyūshū island, one of Japan’s food hot spot. This new pop-up store features, amongst others, products from local producers – honey, fruits, snacks and iconic local craft brands including ceramic and homeware. This store is in line with our and Made in Pierre Hermé’s CSR commitments of promoting and supporting local economies, producers and artisans.”, Lagardère Travel Retail, LinkedIn post, August 21, 2020


“How big businesses in Singapore are managing the challenges of coronavirus: The coronavirus pandemic has thrown into sharp focus the role of government in supporting the economy during periods of crises. But it has also highlighted the role big business can play. Look at Singapore. As the Asia-Pacific headquarters for many major corporations, the country has long invested in business stability even as geopolitical tensions flare globally. So when a spike in Covid-19 cases threatened to tip that equilibrium, authorities moved quickly, announcing more than $73 billion in stimulus — with the latest top-up just last week.”, CNBC Make It, August 23, 2020

South Korea

“South Korea imposes coronavirus lockdown rules following nine days of triple-digit increases in new cases: Health Minister Park Neung-hoo announced new bans on large gatherings, with closures for beaches, nightspots and churches, as well as removing fans from professional sporting events. The government said it did not take the decision lightly, but felt the restrictions were necessary after nine straight days of triple-digit increases in infections.”, Fox News, August 22, 2020

“South Korea’s Coronavirus Return Looks Familiar, With a Church at the Center: Recent surge in Covid-19 cases, like February outbreak, involves a church and an inability to locate all the followers. The country is teetering on the verge of a national outbreak, local health officials warn, and faces a possible return of its most stringent social-distancing measures in the coming days. On Friday, the country reported 324 new virus cases—its largest one-day rise since March 8. Daily infections have hit triple digits for more than a week straight.”, The Wall Street Journal, August 21, 2020


“Why Being Grounded for Months Was the Best Pandemic Outcome for This Airline: U.S. airlines are flying all they can and selling cheap fares to fill planes. Copa was required by its government to do the opposite. It effectively stopped flying for months. It lost a lot of money in the second quarter, but perhaps not as much as you might think. Copa, which has just one domestic route, is back in business, but only in a small way. Thanks to Panama Government Executive Decree No. 300, Copa is launching limited flights to New York, San Jose, Costa Rica, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, and Quito and Guayaquil in Ecuador. Assuming it goes OK, the government should allow more flights next month.”, Brian Sumers, SKIFT, August 21, 2020


“Poland to reopen schools despite new coronavirus record: Poland on Monday insisted it would reopen schools next week for the first time since mid-March despite reaching a record high number of daily registered coronavirus infections late last week. Poland was at first successful in containing the outbreak, but cases have started rising in recent weeks and on Friday authorities reported 903 new infections, the highest daily increase to date.

The rise in infections has caused concern among some parents contemplating sending their children back to class.”, Reuters, August 24, 2020


“Portugal dropped from UK quarantine list: Rush to book as travel curbs end on Saturday. Portugal has finally been ruled safe for travel by the government, with airlines and holiday companies expecting a surge in bookings from Britons desperate for a late summer getaway.”, The Times Of London, August 21, 2020


“Russia’s economic contraction. Russia’s economy felt the full effects of the coronavirus pandemic in the first half of 2020, according to a new report on the federal budget published by Russia’s Accounts Chamber. The report said that in the second quarter, the economy contracted by 8.5 percent year over year, real disposable incomes decreased by 8 percent, retail turnover declined by 16.6 percent and unemployment increased to 6.2 percent in June. The report noted that the peak of the economic decline was in April, and that a slow recovery in a number of indicators has been seen since then.”, Geopolitical Futures, August 20, 2020


“Singapore relaxes coronavirus travel restrictions for mainland China, Taiwan and Malaysia: Passengers from ‘low-risk’ territories – which also include Vietnam, Macau and most of Australia – will serve seven-day stay-home notices, rather than 14. Travellers from Brunei and New Zealand will not need to serve a stay-home notice at all, but will be tested at the airport.”, South China Morning Post, August 21, 2020

“Singapore announces another $5.8 billion to boost its coronavirus-hit economy: Singapore reported one of the worst economic contractions in Asia for the first half of the year. Its open and trade-dependent economy has taken a hard hit, as lockdown measures around the world aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus halted much of global economic activity.”, CNBC, August 19, 2020


“Socialising pushes Spain’s Covid-19 rate far above rest of Europe : Surge in cases may affect reopening of schools, officials warn. Coronavirus is spreading far faster in Spain than in the rest of Europe, confronting the country with a race against time to bring the outbreak under control before the return to school and work next month following the holiday season.”, The Financial Times, August 21, 2020

“Apple stores reclosing in Madrid following COVID-19 surge: Apple is reclosing four stores in Spain. It comes after a fresh wave of COVID-19 cases in the country. It bring the total number of stores closed to five.”, iMore, August 21, 2020

South Africa

“Alcohol for sale again as South Africa eases lockdown: A ban on the sale of alcohol and tobacco will be lifted in South Africa in a significant easing of the lockdown to restart the economy. President Ramaphosa said that nearly all restrictions on economic activity would end amid signs that infections had slowed significantly. In a televised speech he acknowledged that nearly five months under some of the world’s strictest measures had been “extraordinarily difficult”, with millions suffering ‘hardship and hunger’. South Africa still has the fifth-highest number of cases in the world with 583,653 infections registered. Yet its mortality rate is lower than in Europe at 11,677 deaths, and the number of daily confirmed cases has more than halved over the past week. Provincial borders will open from tomorrow for leisure travellers, although international borders are expected to stay closed until 2021. Bars and gyms can also trade but a 10pm curfew remains in place.”, The Sunday Times, August 17, 2020

United Kingdom

“UK economy springs back on summer of spending: Purchasing managers’ index at 7-year high while shopping levels move above pre-coronavirus levels. Britain’s economy leapt back to life at the height of summer as consumers rushed out of lockdown to start spending freely — attracted by the government’s incentives to visit pubs and restaurants. After months of staying home and tightening their belts, data yesterday showed shoppers spent more in July than before the pandemic hit, with businesses also reporting stronger activity in August.”, The Financial Times, August 21, 2020

“Tesco plans to create 16,000 new permanent roles to support growth in its online business.  The country’s biggest supermarket chain has benefited from increased food sales due to the pandemic. Grocery sales have grown at their fastest rate since 1994, up 16.9 per cent to £31.6 billion, and online sales have risen from 9 per cent of total sales before lockdown to more than 16 per cent.  The new roles will include 10,000 to make up orders, 3,000 delivery drivers, plus other roles in stores and distribution centres. The jobs are in addition to the 4,000 jobs created since the start of the pandemic. Tesco has 3,635 shops in Britain and Ireland, employing around 320,000 people.”, The Times of London, April 24, 2020

“Coronavirus: Bowling alleys, stadiums and salons have lockdown rules eased – as mask fines doubled: The maximum fine for not wearing a mask is to double from £1,600 and fines of up to £10,000 are planned for hosting illegal raves. But at the same time, the PM says lockdown rules will be eased to allow: Bowling alleys, skating rinks and casinos to reopen for the first time as well as indoor play and soft play centres; Beauty salons, tattoo studios, spas and barbers in England to offer all close contact services and treatments; Sit-down wedding receptions for up to 30 people to resume in coronavirus-secure premises; Indoor arts and music performances with socially distanced audiences; Sports and business events pilots to resume.”, Sky News, August 14, 2020

“Qatar Airways (QR) announced today that it would continue to rebuild its UK network by adding London Gatwick (LGW) back on its destination list for the first time. The decision comes after UK and worldwide restrictions on flights during the COVID-19 Pandemic lockdown start to ease. With this announcement, it will now see the carrier increase its UK network to four destinations with more to follow. This is a good sign, as restrictions to certain countries around the world continue to be eased.

“Coronavirus: Airport testing could end ‘quarantine roulette’ for holidaymakers – but how would it work? Bosses at Heathrow Airport say it would allow those who test negative to spend less time in quarantine. Heathrow Airport wants to test passengers arriving from certain countries for coronavirus when they enter the UK, potentially allowing them to spend less time in quarantine if they test negative. Airport bosses are calling on the government to approve the scheme, which would allow Britons returning to the UK from “at risk” countries to leave quarantine between five and eight days after they land – instead of the current 14.”, Sky News, August 19, 2020

“Poll: Two thirds of (UK) parents intend to send children back to school: All schools across England are scheduled to return full-time from September. A new poll showed 69 per cent of parents intend to send their children back. Almost a third of parents said they don’t feel comfortable sending children back.”, The Daily Mail, August 21, 2020

“Numbers eating out in UK surpass pre-lockdown levels by a quarter: The first two weeks of the UK government’s Eat Out to Help Out dining scheme has seen the number of people eating in restaurants from Monday to Wednesday increase by an average 26.9% year-on-year. This compares to an average 21.3% year-on-year decline for Thursday to Sunday in the same period, according to data published by OpenTable, a restaurant booking service. One effect of the scheme is that it has encouraged some restaurant goers to eat out Monday to Wednesday, instead of during the other days, according to the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR).”, Yahoo Finance, August 17, 2020

United States

Movie theaters reopen this weekend, but it’s unclear if audiences will return: AMC, Regal, Cinemark and Marcus Corp and other major theater chains are reopening their doors to the public Friday after five long months of being shuttered due to the coronavirus. But even with stringent safety protocols and new film releases, moviegoers may be hesitant to return to cinemas.”, CNBC, August 21, 2020

“U.S. business activity surges to early 2019 levels: Markit flash PMI: Data firm IHS Markit said its flash U.S. Composite PMI Index rose to a reading of 54.7 this month – the highest since February 2019 – from 50.3 in July. Its flash – or preliminary – indicator for the manufacturing sector stood at its highest since January 2019 and for the services sector it was the highest since March 2019.”, Reuters, August 21, 2020

“Domino’s Pizza plans to hire 20,000 U.S. team members to serve ongoing demand: Domino’s Pizza, the international pizza franchise with upward of 17,100 stores, is looking to radically expand its U.S. workforce with the planned hiring of 20,000 new team members as soon as possible. This extends across both corporate and franchise stores, and the roles available aren’t just for pizza makers; supply chain experts, managers, and customer service representatives are just a handful of the other positions on offer.”, Global Franchise Magazine, August 18, 2020

“American Airlines Group Inc said Thursday it plans to suspend flights to 15 U.S. airports in October as travel demand remains low as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Congress has been weighing for weeks whether to grant U.S. airlines another $25 billion in payroll assistance that would keep tens of thousands of airline workers on the job for another six months and extend minimum service requirements. American said it will cancel just over 700 flights in October to and from those 15 airports but warned it could make additional cuts or could reconsider if Congress provides additional assistance.”, Reuters, August 20, 2020

“How US companies and people are adjusting to the pandemic: A nationwide survey measures views on mental-health impacts, safety measures, and new working models. Faced with the persistent threat of COVID-19, companies and people in the United States must make tough decisions about when to return to workplaces and resume normal activities. To help address the issues they face, McKinsey conducted a nationwide survey and interview program in partnership with Business Roundtable. Scroll down to view findings with respect to four topics: the mental-health impact of the crisis, the factors that people say would make them feel safer returning to normal activities, the safety measures employers are implementing, and the need for new working arrangements if schools partially reopen.”, McKinsey & Company, April 24, 2020

Articles And Charts About Doing Business in The Times Of COVID-19 and Beyond

“Global COVID-19 Containment: Confirmed Cases, Updated Daily: This continuously updated chart from Our World in Data provides a more complete look at the efficacy of COVID-19 containment strategies, sorted by country. It is a variation of the Epidemic Curve (or “epi curve”), showing confirmed COVID-19 cases per country in relation to their testing rates—what’s revealed is the strength of each country’s containment strategy.”, Visual Capitalist, August 17, 2020

“Redrawing the Map of Global Trade: As it destabilizes economies, intensifies geopolitical friction, and exposes the risks of current global manufacturing and supply networks, the pandemic is also likely to redraw the map of world trade. To visualize these shifts, we have prepared two maps depicting major trade corridors. One shows the actual change in trade volumes from 2015 through 2019; the other projects changes from 2019 through 2023 under our baseline economic scenario.”, Boston Consulting Group, July 2020

“An airline cabin crew reveals the reality of working during coronavirus pandemic: One of the industries hit the hardest is aviation. While we’re all doing our bit and staying on the ground in an attempt to slow the spread of the virus, some planes are still flying to cater for those who must travel. That means that some airline crew from around the world are still working, putting themselves at risk daily to help people get where they need to be. Requiring face masks, mandatory temperature checks and little-to-no meal service are just some of the drastic steps airlines are taking to limit the spread of the virus. Plus, the measures to limit contact between the crew and passengers on board. Alex is a senior cabin crew member for British Airways. She agreed to document a recent flight from London to Hong Kong to give a snapshot of what it’s like to fly right now — and potentially for some months to come.”, The Points Guy, August 22, 2020

Who We Are And What We Do

Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) provides a complete International solution for U.S. businesses Going Global. From initial global market research and country prioritization, to developing new international markets and providing operational support around the world. Our U.S. based executive team has experience living and working in many countries. Our Associate network on the ground overseas covers 40+ countries.

Founded in 2001, Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) takes U.S. businesses global and currently has activity in 25 countries.  Our Clients are all consumer-faced brands.  Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) has twice received the U.S. President’s Award for Export Excellence

Find out more about the services we provide U.S. companies Going Global at:

William Edwards, CFE, is CEO and Global Advisor of Edwards Global Services (EGS). William Edwards has 46 years of international operations, development, executive and entrepreneurial experience and has lived in 7 countries.   With experience in the franchise, oil and gas, information technology and management consulting sectors, he has directed projects on-site in Alaska, Asia, Europe and the Middle and Near East.  Mr. Edwards was named to the District Export Council of Southern California by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce in 2016 and again in 2019.

For global cross business sectoral updates and advice, contact Mr. Edwards at or +1 949 224 3896.

EGS Biweekly Global Business Newsletter Issue 10, Monday, August 10, 2020

By William (Bill) Edwards, CEO of Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS)

“Every day is an opportunity to be a better version of ourselves. Progress is more important than perfection.” Simon Sinek.

“Great leaders believe they work for their team. Average leaders believe their team works for them.” Alexander Den Heijer

“Nothing is worth more than this day. You cannot relive yesterday. Tomorrow is still beyond our reach.” Johann Wolfgang Von Goethe


We monitor 30+ countries, 25 daily international information sources and six business sectors to keep up with what is going on in this ever-changing environment. Our team on the ground covers 43 countries and provides us with updates about what is happening in their specific countries.

Many of our newsletter readers send us their input and perspectives to help us publish a balanced overview about the world every other week.  Our contact information is at the bottom of this newsletter.

Highlights In This Issue

This issue focuses on what is happening in more than 20 countries that impact new trends, health, consumer spending, business investment and travel. A few highlights:

  • What global brands are doing to survive COVID-19
  • S. State Department lifts the ‘do not travel’ advisory in place since March 19
  • Reimagining European restaurants post COVID-19
  • the June Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Business Barometer (GBB), tracked sentiment as global executives started thinking about recovery. Readings reveal a variety of views.
  • Several updates on international travel ups and down
  • The new Global Markets Complexity Index (GMCI) launches to helps multinationals navigate international expansion and contraction

Coping With COVID – What Global Brands are Doing to Survive

In 46 years of doing international business and living in 7 countries, I have seen numerous wars, natural disasters, political meltdowns, and trade disputes. But nothing prepared us for the 2020 Covid-19 global disaster. I have been monitoring what franchisors have done from February to July to manage their international operations. Restaurant, retail, and fitness franchisors have seen their units shut down worldwide, resulting in drastically lower sales and royalties. Unit revenues often fell to zero for several months, as they did in the U.S. My recent article on shows best practice examples of what top international franchisors have done to save their international business and prepare for a better future.

Cell Phone Technology Now and Then

Ashley Short, Director of Operations for Tim Hortons®, published this graphic on LinkedIn. Having owned one of these phones when living in Central Europe in 2000, this is self-explanatory!


The Growth of Digital Business Due to COVID-19

“Yum!’s Digital Business Has Gained Over $1 Billion: Yum! generated $3.5 billion in digital sales in Q2, a 40 percent year-over-year boom that equated to a $1 billion step-up from 2019 levels.”, QSR Magazine, July 2020.

It took the COVID-19 crisis to cause an uptick in e-commerce sales in the U.S.

International Travel Updates

“US State Dept. lifts “do not travel” global travel advisory, but COVID-19 is still a worldwide risk. The U.S. State Department just revoked the emergency “Level 4: Do Not Travel” global advisory implemented on March 19. ‘With health and safety conditions improving in some countries and potentially deteriorating in others, the Department is returning to our previous system of country-specific levels of travel advice,’ the department stated in a press release dated Thursday, Aug. 6. ‘We continue to recommend U.S. citizens exercise caution when traveling abroad due to the unpredictable nature of the pandemic.’”, The Points Guy, August 6, 2020

This is NOT a joke: “Taiwanese airlines offer fun flights to Japan, but don’t expect to land: Carriers and cruise lines seek to give people an escape from Covid-19 with a range of local holiday packages. Idea comes after Songshan Airport in Taipei began offering airport tours and the chance to sit on a stationary plane on a runway.”, South China Morning Post, August 2, 2020

“When will international travel return? A country-by-country guide to coronavirus recovery: The bad news is very few countries are open to tourism right now. The good news is that some countries are slowly opening up again and more are providing timelines on when travel might again be possible.”, The Points Guy, July 31, 2020

“What to Look for If You Have to Travel for Business: Take these factors into consideration when planning your accommodations during business travel. For a business traveler, traveling and staying in a hotel during the coronavirus pandemic might be a cause for concern. While you may have prepared the company for business travel, it may still feel overwhelming trying to keep up with all of the information that is constantly changing. If you might have to book a business flight soon and find accommodations, you’ll want to be sure you are doing it safely.”,, August 9, 2020

“This is what it’s like to fly across the Pacific during COVID: The flying experience has been turned upside down since the coronavirus pandemic began affecting travel earlier this year. Perhaps nowhere is the disruption to air travel more pronounced than on international flights, which have borne the worst fallout of the pandemic. So, what is it like to fly overseas right now?”, The Points Guy, August 4, 2020

“The Path Forward: The Airline Industry with Delta CEO Ed Bastian: ‘We are focused on restoring confidence in air travel, particularly the safety and the health of our people, our employees as well as our customers.’”, The Washington Post, August 4, 2020

“Lufthansa Boosts Its Fall Destinations: Boosting its fall season, Lufthansa (LH) has announced that it will operate five further European destinations. The services are set to begin in September and October. Starting on September 7, the carrier will offer services from Munich (MUC) to Marseille (France), Gothenburg (Sweden), Kiev (Ukraine) and Sibiu (Romania). In addition, on October 5, the German company will fly again to Graz (Austria). With these additions, LH expects to operate an increased MUC timetable by the end of October. These include 86 destinations in Germany and Europe and 13 long-haul destinations.”, Airways Magazine, August 4, 2020

“China Adds Flights From Japan and South Korea as Travel Curbs Ease: China allowed more scheduled passenger flights from Japan and South Korea as the Asian countries gradually ease coronavirus travel curbs. But finding affordable tickets is still difficult for many travelers as average prices are up nearly tenfold amid high demand. There will be 15 passenger flights between China and Japan every week in August, up from 12 a week last month, according to the Japanese embassy in China and airline companies.”, Caixin, August 6, 2020

“A growing number of cruise lines are canceling sailings into 2021: The first Crystal voyage now available for booking isn’t until Jan. 5, 2021. Crystal isn’t alone. A growing number of cruise lines are giving up on efforts to bring back voyages before the end of the year. Among them are Celestyal Cruises, which recently canceled all sailings through March 6, 2021, and Victory Cruise Lines, which has dropped all sailings until April 24, 2021. Canada cruise specialist Adventure Canada also has canceled all 2020 departures. One of the world’s biggest cruise lines, Princess Cruises, recently canceled nearly all its sailings in the Caribbean and many other regions through at least Dec. 15.”, The Points Guy, August 8, 2020

Latin America

“Covid-19 Derails Latin America’s Bid for Middle-Class Prosperity: Region faces a record GDP decline this year and will likely lag behind other emerging markets in any recovery. The pandemic has devastated hundreds of thousands of businesses across Latin America, setting back the clock on the social and economic gains made over the past two decades when a global commodities boom powered breakneck growth. Now Latin America’s economy is expected to contract 9.4% this year, according to the International Monetary Fund, the worst downfall on record for a region that was already wrestling with political turmoil and social unrest before it became a hot spot for Covid-19.”, The Wall Street Journal, August 6, 2020


The state of Victoria is on a Stage 4 lock down. “A curfew is in place between the hours of 8pm until 5am. This means you must be at your home during these hours. The only reasons to leave home between 8pm and 5am will be work, medical care and caregiving.

The four reasons that you can leave home remain, but further limitations are now in place for: shopping for food or other essential items; exercise (applies to outdoor exercise, and with only one other person); permitted work; and caregiving, for compassionate reasons or to seek medical treatment also remains a permitted reason to leave home. As much as you can, you must stay at home. When you leave home, you must use a face covering, unless you have a lawful reason for not doing so.”, Victoria State Government, Health and Human Services, August 2, 2020

“Restructuring Virgin Australia to shed wide-body jets, shrink to an all-Boeing 737 airline. The Brisbane-based carrier will prune its more fleet of more than 130 planes to just about around 75 Boeing 737s and will shrink its network to include only domestic Australia and short-haul international routes, Virgin Australia said Wednesday.”, The Points Guy, August 5, 2020

“McDonald’s closes restaurants and moves to delivery only in Melbourne while the city is under coronavirus curfew: McDonald’s stores in Melbourne move to delivery-only under Stage 4 lockdown. Popular fast food restaurant said there doors will be shut between 8pm and 5am. Those looking to fix their French fry craving will need to download an app.”, Daily Mail, August 6, 2020

“Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment: Prime Minister Scott Morrison today announced that the pandemic leave offer of $1500 may extend to states and territories outside of Victoria. The Prime Minister this week announced a new $1500 payment which will be available to workers who have exhausted, or do not have, sick leave and have been directed to self-isolate or quarantine by a public health official. People will be able to access the payment more than once, if they need to self-isolate more than once. The payment does not apply to people on JobKeeper or JobSeeker.”, Australian Retailers Association, August 5, 2020


“Brazil’s economy: nowhere to go but up?: Brazil’s central bank is expected to cut its benchmark interest rate today to 2%—a record low— amid a devastating recession and the world’s second-highest number of covid-19 deaths. Paulo Guedes, the economy minister, has had to abandon his trademark austerity in favour of measures to help businesses and boost spending, including a monthly payment of 600 reais ($115) to more than 60m Brazilians. The central bank has sought to dispel gloomy predictions. Its president said recently that the economy has started a “V-shaped” recovery and that a previous GDP forecast of -6.4% for 2020 was too pessimistic. The economy ministry thinks the drop will be -4.7%. It is betting on congress to pass an ambitious tax reform that would simplify accounting for businesses and attract more foreign investment. The reform has been years in the making—and has spent years on the shelf—but during a pandemic, anything is possible.”, The Economist, August 5, 2020

 Mainland China

 “China factory activity expands at fastest rate in 9 years: Manufacturing survey data beat expectations….The Caixin manufacturing purchasing managers’ index, a private sector survey, beat expectations to hit 52.8 in July, its highest level in more than nine years. A figure of more than 50 indicates expansion compared with the previous month. The reading reflects a bounce back of activity after a sharp contraction earlier this year, when the country was under lockdown because of the coronavirus pandemic. China’s economy returned to growth in the second quarter and factory activity has increased in each of the past three months.”, The Financial Times, August 3, 2020

“China becomes a refuge for U.S. companies after overcoming COVID-19: U.S. companies, including Nuke and tesla, have been buoyed by strong results from China.”, The Wall Street Journal, August 7, 2020

Costa Rica

“Costa Rica to begin staggered reopening as July coronavirus cases jump: The Costa Rican government will begin an economic reopening on Saturday in a bid to reverse a sharp coronavirus-induced slowdown, the president said on Wednesday, even though the official tally shows the COVID-19 caseload continuing to rise. The government will allow businesses and restaurants to reopen during the first nine days of August, but will then pause the effort for the following 12 days and resume restrictions, according to Alvarado’s plan, who added that the cycle was expected to be repeated.”, Reuters, July 29, 2020


 “Reimagining European restaurants for the next normal: To win in the next normal, European restaurants will need to embrace innovation in their channel strategy, menu offerings, and business model.”, McKinsey, August 5, 2020


“Paris Rolls Out Red Carpet for Those Who Can Make It: Travel restrictions on the U.S. and China, and the threat of a coronavirus rebound, have kept most foreigners away. How desperate is the City of Light for tourists these days? Even the waiters are friendly. The lines are gone. Public transportation is a breeze, with plenty of seating and social-distancing. Hotels and restaurants—bereft of deep-pocketed American, Chinese and Middle Eastern clientele—are hustling to fill rooms and tables. The main beneficiaries: other Europeans.”, The Wall Street Journal, August 1, 2020


 “Ireland to Introduce COVID-19 Testing at Airports: The Irish government is to introduce COVID-19 testing at airports. The measure is a response to the rise in cases in other countries. Health Minister Stephen Donnelly said, ‘We’re introducing random testing at the airports and an increased public health presence…We’re examining other options as well for further restrictions on non-essential travel.’”, Airways Magazine, August 2, 2020


“Japan Sees 1,000-Plus Daily Hikes In Coronavirus Cases As Economy Slowly Rebounds: Japan, which initially saw  success in keeping the coronavirus from swamping the nation, posted more than 1,000 new cases for at least five consecutive days between July 29 and Aug. 2, according to local reports, even as the nation eases some portions of a travel ban to boost  its economic recovery…the Japanese case counts have been rising, according to Kyodo News and, as the Tokyo metropolitan government on Tuesday reported 309 new cases, with people in their 20s and 30s accounting for about 62% of Tuesday’s cases in the capital.”, Forbes, August 4, 2020


“Kenya Airways Restarts International Flights: Kenya Airways (KO) resumed today its international flights. The carrier is set to fly to about 30 destinations since the routes were suspended due to COVID-19 in March. The airline resumed domestic flights in mid-July after the government cleared local air travel. Air France KLM holds a small stake in KO.”, Airways Magazine, August 1, 2020


“Kuwait Bans Commercial Flights from 31 Countries Over Covid-19: While other flights will resume, countries on the barred list include India, Iran, China, Brazil, Lebanon, Spain, Singapore, Egypt and Sri Lanka, the Directorate General of Civil Aviation said in a statement. The airport resumed commercial flights on Saturday as part of a phased re-opening after a five-month suspension when the country imposed measures to control the spread of the coronavirus. It plans to reach full capacity by mid-2021.”, Bloomberg, August 1, 2020


“Carl’s Jr. to open new restaurants in Baja California Sur: Outlets to open soon Cabo San Lucas, San José del Cabo. At a time when restaurants are failing worldwide due to the coronavirus pandemic, American fast-food chain Carl’s Jr. says it is expanding in Baja California Sur (BCS).”, Mexico News Daily, July 28, 2020

New Zealand

 “Coronavirus: New Zealand marks 100 days without community spread: New Zealand has gone 100 days without recording a locally transmitted Covid-19 case, a milestone that has both been welcomed and brought warnings against complacency. The last case of community transmission was detected on 1 May, days after the country started easing its lockdown. Sunday was the fourth day in a row that no new cases of Covid-19 were reported.”, BB News, August 9, 2020


“Copa Airlines will resume commercial operations in mid-August, bringing to an end an almost five-month period where the Star Alliance member’s entire fleet has been grounded because of the COVID-19 pandemic. A wider network expansion is planned from early September, providing additional coronavirus-related travel restrictions are not imposed. The August  flight program will only include 10 cities in the region. Copa plans to reach 30%-40% of the company operation by  December 2020.”, Enrique Tellez, Franchise Consultant, Panama City

 The Philippines

“Philippine Airlines Suspends Domestic Service from Manila: Following the Philippines’ decision to resume lockdown, Philippine Airlines (PR) announced the suspension of its domestic flights at Manila’s Ninoy Aquino International Airport (MNL) until August 18. However, the airline will continue to fly between the capital and international destinations when circumstances allow it. Apart from Manila, PR has not announced the suspension of any other domestic route.”, Airways Magazine, August 5, 2020


“Russia Resumes International Flights To Select Destinations: After approximately four months of international isolation, on Aug. 1 some airports in Russia were able to welcome international departure to a small number of foreign destinations. Earlier in the month, Russian consumer watchdog Rospotrebnadzor had sent a memo to the Transport Ministry and the Federal Air Transport Agency containing a list of 13 countries that meet epidemiological safety requirements for safe welcome of travelers. The list included the U.K., Hungary, Germany, Denmark, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Finland, Vietnam, China, Mongolia and Sri Lanka, online outlet eTN reported.”, Airline Geeks, August 2, 2020

Saudi Arabia

“For the first time in Saudi history, the government barred Muslims from entering the kingdom from abroad for the (annual) Hajj. Some 2.5 million pilgrims usually visit the Saudi Arabian cities of Mecca and Medina for the week-long ritual – a once-in-a-lifetime duty for every able-bodied Muslim who can afford it. But this year as few as 1,000 people already residing in Saudi Arabia will take part in the gathering in an effort to control the spread of COVID-19.”, Sky News, July 29, 2020


“Singapore Deploys Drones to Monitor Social Distancing: Will Other Tourist Destinations Follow? Singapore‘s police have been trialling two pilotless drones developed by Israel’s Airobotics to help enforce social distancing measures aimed at containing the spread of COVID-19. The small machines weigh 10 kg (22 pounds) and are programmed to track anomalies such as gatherings and stream footage to the police.”, Skift, August 8, 2020


“The American Chamber of Commerce in Thailand (AmCham Thailand) has presented a white paper in responding to the government’s “New Normal” initiative, offering advice about long-term measures to support sustainable economic growth in Thailand.

In the white paper “Better than Before — Creating Long Term Growth in Thailand Post-Covid-19”, AmCham demonstrates its support for the Thai government’s vision of making the nation a high-income country by 2037 and suggests cooperation in key areas such as trade relations, global supply chains, digital economy, small and medium enterprises, tourism, healthcare, and energy to accelerate US investment in the region.”, The Bangkok Post, July 31, 2020

United Arab Emirates

“Emirates Introduces COVID-19 Insurances to Passengers, Cuts Crew Costs: Emirates, a Dubai-based airline, is trying a new method to boost confidence for international travel by introducing a brand-new insurance to passengers. Emirates’ new program will compensate passengers if they are diagnosed with COVID-19 during their travel. According to an airline press release, the program is valid from now until the end of October and offered for free to Emirates customers regardless of the passenger’s nationality, class of travel or destination. Passengers will be covered for medical expenses up to 150,000 euros ($176,000) and quarantine costs of 100 euros per day for 14 days. The insurance is valid for 31 days from the start of the passenger’s journey. Passengers will be covered automatically when booking with the carrier and don’t need to register. ‘We are now taking it to a next level, by being the first in the industry to offer our customers free global cover for COVID-19 medical expenses and quarantine costs should they incur these costs during their travel,’ said HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, the chairman and chief executive of Emirates Group.”, Airline Geeks, July 29, 2020

United Kingdom

 “UK manufacturing began the third quarter on a stronger footing with output in July growing at its fastest pace in nearly three years. The closely watched manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) rose to 53.3 from 50.1 in June as the lockdown eased and demand picked up. A reading above 50 indicates growth. While the figure was slightly less than the flash estimate of 53.6, it is the highest since March 2019. Orders grew for the first time in five months and optimism increased by the most in two years. Economists cautioned that the sector would take a while to recover from the pandemic. Rob Dobson, at survey compiler IHS Markit, said: ‘There is a significant risk of further redundancies and of furloughed workers not returning unless demand and confidence stage more substantial and long-lasting rebounds in the months ahead.’”, The Times Of London, August 3, 2020

Trend?   “Apple asks UK retail landlords to cut rent by 50% and offer a ‘rent-free period’ due to COVID-19. The report explains that Apple would like its rent to match what is being paid by other retailers amid the slowdown caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In light of the COVID-19 shutdown and much lower foot traffic, many mall operators in the UK offered discounted rent to their tenants. Simply put, mall operators are looking to incentivize struggling tenants to stick to their lease despite the economic downturn.”, 9to5MAC, August 2, 2020

“More British workers are staying at home than in any other major European nations – but those who have gone back are doing so for longer. Little more than a third (34 per cent) of UK staff are back at their desks. Contrasts with 83 per cent of French office staff and 70 per cent of Germans. But Britons who have returned are doing so for more days a week than rivals.”, The Daily Mail, August 6, 2020

“The British Museum will be re-opening selected galleries to the public from Thursday 27 August. A new one-way route round the Ground Floor and Lower galleries will allow you to see objects from ancient Egypt, Greece, Rome and Assyria, before exploring Africa, North America, Mexico and the Enlightenment Gallery. everyone – including Members – will need to book a free ticket in advance to visit the Museum. In recognition of your invaluable support, Members will have the opportunity to book ahead of the general public.”, British Museum Friends, August 7, 2020

United States

“63% of U.S. consumers are willing to pay more to have seats blocked. Many airlines instituted blocking middle seats to increase safety for passengers amid the coronavirus, but some have already stopped. Here’s a roundup of airline policies.

Fish Consulting has issued an update on the status of the U.S. restaurant, travel 7 hospitality, fitness, health & wellness, home services, retail and beauty sectors.

“Regal Crown theaters are schedule to reopen on August 21st in California”, Regal Crown Club member email, August 6, 2020

“Here are five charts illustrating U.S. economic trends amid the coronavirus pandemic: States are taking differing approaches to reopening and closing, and the economy is feeling the impact differently depending on the sector. The economic worry tied to rising coronavirus cases has impacted the health of certain areas of the economy.”, CNBC, August 2, 2020

Articles And Charts About Doing Business in The Times Of COVID-19 and Beyond

“COVID-19 seems to have changed lifestyles for good: Google search traffic for cooking, exercise and crafts remains above normal levels.”, The Economist, August 5, 2020

“The third edition of the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Business Barometer (GBB), fielded in June, tracked sentiment as global executives started thinking about recovery. Readings reveal a variety of views. The most optimistic would create a V-shaped chart. Should more disruption follow, we might see a volatile W-shaped chart. More likely is a U-shape, where economies tred the bottom for a period before gradual upturn.”, Economist Intelligence Unit, July 2020

Innovation: “Panera’s Unlimited Coffee Subscription Program Is Already A Big Success: Panera launched an unlimited subscription coffee program in late February, a move CEO Niren Chaudhary called ‘disruptive.’  Indeed, no other chain had launched such a program without restrictions on size, daypart or channel. Then the pandemic hit. Workers stopped commuting to the office (and leaving their homes in general), and the only thing that was actually disrupted was business as usual.  Still, Panera has so far managed to break the 835,000-subscriber level on its fledgling, $8.99-a-month program, including over 700,000 sign-ups alone in July.”, Forbes, August 4, 2020

Global Markets Complexity Index: A Guide for Multinationals Navigating Expansion and Contraction Developed in Association with The Wall Street Journal. The GMCI is a framework for geographic footprint strategy that helps multinationals navigate international expansion and contraction. Explore the analysis of market, operational, and regulatory complexity across 100 countries…”, Wilson Perumal & Company, August 10, 2020

“Your ultimate guide to working from home productively: As the remote work experiment drags on, here are five critical things you should be doing every day to maximize productivity. The remote work shift has crystallized into a long-term reality, with many workers accepting (and even looking forward to) this new way of life. Research shows that the longer workers operate remotely, the more likely this habit will stick. Kate Lister, president of Global Workplace Analytics, anticipates 25-30% of the workforce will be working at home multiple days a week by the end of 2020.”, Fast Company, August 4, 2020

Who We Are And What We Do

Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) provides a complete International solution for U.S. businesses Going Global. From initial global market research and country prioritization, to developing new international markets and providing operational support around the world. Our U.S. based executive team has experience living and working in many countries. Our Associate network on the ground overseas covers 40+ countries.

Founded in 2001, Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) takes U.S. businesses global and currently has activity in 25 countries.  Our Clients are all consumer-faced brands.  Edwards Global Services, Inc. (EGS) has twice received the U.S. President’s Award for Export Excellence

Find out more about the services we provide U.S. companies Going Global at:

William Edwards has 46 years of international operations, development, executive and entrepreneurial experience and has lived in 7 countries.   With experience in the franchise, oil and gas, information technology and management consulting sectors, he has directed projects on-site in Alaska, Asia, Europe and the Middle and Near East.  Mr. Edwards was named to the District Export Council of Southern California by the U.S. Secretary of Commerce in 2016 and again in 2019.

William Edwards, CFE, is CEO and Global Advisor to Chief Executives, of Edwards Global Services (EGS). Contact Bill at or +1 949 224 3896.

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