This is no hypothesis: this is straight from the source. HSBC Navigator has received the results of our latest on-the-ground survey of businesses around the world. We wanted to know the appetite for expanding into new markets, hopes and fears around supply chains. Who will invest in new tech, new skills? Whose focus is on sustainability? Where, in summary, is business heading and what can we learn right now from those leading the charge?
We asked more than 7,300 business leaders across 14 markets what they were thinking, feeling, and planning right now for the year ahead and the response is loud and clear: 90% predicted a return to growth, and internationalisation is a core strategy. They are optimistic. But also, they’re facing into challenges – challenges that are eternal, and challenges that are unique to our times.
In terms of sector, it’s the service industry that is feeling the most confident. Is this because these businesses are less reliant on supply chains? They are also well placed to thrive in remote working conditions. Geographically, the hot spots of confidence are in entrepreneurial emerging markets: those getting ready to ride the wave of future growth include Mexico, Egypt, and India – as well as the more established markets such as the USA.