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Kiwi businesses need better planning: PwC

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 3/11/2016 Ben Leahy

While many New Zealand family businesses experienced increased growth last year, they may fail to capitalise on future opportunities because of poor strategic planning, a new survey has revealed.

Financial services firm PwC's 2016 family business survey included interviews with more than 2,800 businesses in 50 countries, which had turnovers ranging from $US5 million to over $US1 billion.

It revealed one third of New Zealand respondents expected to see steady growth over the next five years and 79 per cent expected to earn most of their revenue from the same products they sold today.

But PwC partner Robbie Gimblett said the report also warned that many families were unable to turn promise into sustainable success because they did not adequately plan for leadership succession and long term goals.

"What's confusing is that 62 per cent of NZ respondents feel that it is very important to ensure the long term future of the business yet 51 per cent have no succession plans in place for senior roles,'' he said.

Mr Gimblett said he was also worried by how few New Zealand family businesses planned on expanding into international markets.

"An important balancing act for family businesses is staying profitable and continuing to build value for the future," he said.

"However, only 31 per cent of local respondents are currently working outside of NZ, compared to half of our global respondents."

"A worrying minority of eight per cent said they will move into different export markets, while 28 per cent (are) aiming to become more innovative."


* Skills: 48 per cent say their ability to attract and retain the right talent is a key challenge for the next five years

* Innovation: 62 per cent identify innovation as a key challenge in the next five years

* Professionalism: 62 per cent say they will bring in non-family professionals to help run their business

* Cyber security: 45 per cent believe their business is prepared for dealing with a data breach or cyber-attack

* Finance: 42 per cent said they have seen stronger sales over the last financial year

* Going global: one third of family businesses are operating outside of New Zealand, compared to half of global survey respondents, while eight per cent have prioritised moving into different export markets.

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