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No less than 61% of South African SMMEs surveyed by Mastercard* in Q2 this year are actively planning for growth. This despite a massive 84% saying their revenue has been negatively affected by the pandemic, with the survey showing that 79% are looking at earnings holding steady or growing in the next year.

This is great news for business in South Africa, and it seems other countries are showing similar ‘green shoots’ as the world starts to emerge from the worst of the pandemic shut-downs. The ‘green shoots’ narrative is certainly borne out by stats coming out of the UK, with Companies House there reporting a massive 350 534 new businesses registered in the first half of this year (32% up on the same period [pre-pandemic] in 2019).

The top five areas being addressed were:

  • Upskilling staff – 58%
  • Better data, analytics & insights – 57%
  • Digitising business operations – 53%
  • Digital payment systems – 48%
  • International business transactions – 48%

In essence, then companies are looking ahead to the likely “Great Resignation” and upskilling staff to mitigate this as far as possible, while looking at ways to better expend their businesses, both locally and internationally, through greater use of digital technologies to find new markets, offer better systems and more flexibility with payments, too.

Looking at expanded market opportunities, 84% see private sector partnerships and 56% see international government or business collaborations as being key areas for growth.

These issues will go a long way to mitigating the chief concern of 76% of businesses – rising costs – with red tape and regulations being a concern for 63% of businesses and 51% citing access to capital concerns.

Are you and your board already actively planning for your growth this year, and have you identified your areas of focus and expansion?

*Mastercard SME Index – 300 SA SMMEs surveyed April-May 2021

#BusinessFitness #Boards #Crisis #Disruption #Growth #Leadership #Opportunity #People #Planning #Profitability #Resilience #Strategy #Winners


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