While the survey was conducted before the recent global economic turmoil caused by COVID-19 and the oil price wars, many of the structural themes uncovered remain the same, and we expect these recent events to exacerbate—and at times accelerate—the disruptive forces identified in our survey as driving restructuring activity.

As we take a deeper dive into regional disparities and the impact of wider disruptive forces, the picture becomes even more complex. The disruptive effects of technological advancements, an uncertain geopolitical climate, and wildly changing consumer behaviors are not only affecting the "top three" industries, but are causing ripples across all sectors, in new and unpredictable ways.

With our eyes on the road ahead, disruptive events in 2020 are set to continue. The full effects of the coronavirus and oil price wars are still to be determined and we, like many others, anticipate that they will drive a spike in restructuring activity across a range of sectors. With the UK’s departure from the EU, a US election, and the threat of recession also prevailing globally, uncertainty will be a theme this year.

Specific challenges will come to light as policies are made and votes cast, but the one thing we can confidently predict is that everyone must prepare themselves for an unknown but disruptive future.