SAN ANTONIO – Editor’s note: This story was published through a partnership between the San Antonio Business Journal and KSAT.
The damage caused by the Covid-19 pandemic has not hit all industries or businesses equally.
As the technology and defense reporter at the Business Journal, I have seen many businesses thrive as businesses turned to cloud-based software solutions as many more started working from home. The Defense Department also continued to spend money on contracts and on finding solutions to beat the pandemic.
After looking at reporting over the past few months, here are some businesses — in no order — that have thrived during the pandemic.
Xenex Disinfection Services
San Antonio-based company Xenex that makes germ-zapping robots, called Lightstrike Robots, had quite a rise in demand. In March, the Business Journal reported that the company’s overall business early on in 2020 was up 400% compared to all of last year, and that was just at the beginning of the pandemic.
In May, the Business Journal reported that testing by the Texas Biomedical Research Institute proved its robots can deactivate SARS-Cov-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, taking roughly five minutes for the robots to achieve a 99.99% level of disinfection rate on N95 respiratory masks. It also recently struck a deal with the National Football League’s Carolina Panthers to have these robots disinfect the Charlotte-based Bank of America Stadium.
The grocery chain is a Texan favorite, and exponentially grew its digital and delivery presence during the pandemic. The My H-E-B app’s active monthly users increased 1,050%, and achieved its 2021 revenue goals in a matter of months and it expanded its digital team by more than 150, as of September, both of which got the company to receive a shoutout from Apple CEO Tim Cook. The company also received the highest marks for grocery stores in the U.S. for “Satisfaction with Covid-19 Precautions Taken by Brand,” according to a report by marketing and consumer experience company Bond Brand Loyalty Inc.
H-E-B also more than doubled its delivery coverage area statewide through its subsidiary Favor Delivery launching 75 new statewide markets within one-week in April. That same month, select H-E-B stores started selling ready-made meals from restaurant partners across Texas with all proceeds from the sales of these chef-prepared meals going directly to the restaurants. Restaurants such as La Gloria, Tre Trattoria, Rosario’s, Max and Louie’s New York Diner, Two Bros. BBQ Market and Los Barrios Mexican Restaurant are featured in this program.
Appddiction Studio LLC
Appddiction Studio’s founder and CEO Tim Porter is having a stellar year. In late September, Porter beat out representatives from each state and territory of the U.S. to be named the U.S. Small Business Administration’s small business person of the year. The company, which received a PPP loan, now generates $20 million in revenue with a goal of reaching $200 million within the next two years
Roughly 60% of the company’s revenue comes from government contracting, while 40% comes from commercial enterprise clients. The company also recently partnered with the University of the Incarnate Word to start CodeBound — a subsidiary of Appddiction that has its in-house software developers teach UIW students real-world, hands-on experience to work on government contracts. CodeBound, which is starting its third class of six students, has had 15 students graduate from the program, all of whom were hired by Appddiction.