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New Zealand tops world company growth

New Zealand tops world league table in above-average growth companies - But Sweden leads with 'super growth' businesses -

New Zealand tops the list for the country with the highest proportion of above-average growth companies, according to Grant Thornton's International Business Owners Survey (IBOS) 2004.

In New Zealand, 69% of companies have shown above-average growth in the past year, compared with 58% in countries such as Australia and Ireland, 57% in the UK, and 50% in the United States and France. A group of Asia-Pacific countries follows New Zealand in the above-average league with Hong Kong scoring 67%, Taiwan and India 63% and Singapore 62%.

New Zealand tops the chart because a balance of more than 37% of companies in New Zealand reported increased employment in the past year, the highest of all countries in the Grant Thornton IBOS research, and a balance of more than 64% reported increased turnover over the past three years ? the second highest of all countries surveyed.

But when it comes to 'super growth' companies, New Zealand is well outpointed by Sweden.

Compared with a 15% global average, 24% of companies in Sweden are 'super growth'. Sweden is followed by the US (22% of companies), India (21%), the UK (20%) and Ireland (18%). [See table 2]

In New Zealand, however, only 6% of New Zealand businesses are regarded as 'super growth' companies.**

Companies in Japan, Mexico and Turkey are least likely to be 'super growth', with only 2% of companies in these countries classified as such. Of these, only Japan fared much better in the above-average chart.

"New Zealand's position in the above-average growth league is very heartening, but converting more of those businesses into 'super growth' companies is the challenge," said Grant Thornton New Zealand chairman Peter Sherwin today.

"Previous results from the survey showed New Zealand scoring well in various areas, such as the proportion of women in senior management and the uptake and use of technology to create growth. The earlier results also showed New Zealand companies more than the businesses of any other nation considered government regulations and red tape to be their most significant threat overall.

"Perhaps this has had a more profound, ripple effect on the group of above-average companies from which the 'super growth' businesses have been drawn."

Mr Sherwin said it appeared that if further work was done in the area of compliance constraints, there could be significant growth gains.

"Untangling some of the red tape could mean New Zealand topping both world tables."

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