As part of this year's Growth Index, leading growth-focused private equity firm ECI Partners have looked back over the last decade and how far we have come since 2009. They have surveyed hundreds of UK growth companies to get a view of today's UK growth company environment. And they have looked ahead to 2029, and got a sense of what prospects and opportunities the future has in store.
Some interesting insights are as follows:
- Technology and business services are forecast to be at the forefront of the fastest growing sectors over the next 10 year period.
- The message to UK growth companies today is that the world’s economic centre of gravity will increasingly shift from West to East.
- In spite of a cocktail of challenges ranging from concerns over the 2016 EU referendum results, a deepening shortage of skills and stunted GDP growth across the UK economy as a whole, UK growth companies remain bullish in their outlook with 81% of respondents anticipating growth of more than 10% over the next 12 months.
- While 74% of respondents fear political uncertainty in the short term (next 5 years), a mere 25% name this as a concern in the long term (5-10 years).
- Respondents in the financial services sector place the highest importance on cybersecurity with almost 50% naming it as top concern.
- UK growth companies should find solace in the fact that, compared to the political and economic quagmire we are facing today, growth prospects for the next decade look rosy.
- Artificial Intelligence (AI) is set to be one of the major drivers of productivity improvements and economic growth over the next decade
- Continental Europe and North America, remain the dominant target markets for growth companies.
- As UK businesses ready themselves for the next decade of activity, the expansion of relatively untapped markets in Asia will represent a wealth of new opportunities.
The results of the 2019 ECI Growth Index paint a picture of optimism in the face of adversity. These high achieving UK growth companies are agile, innovative and bullish in their expansion plans. They truly are the backbone of the UK economy.