Drop in business numbers eases
Drop in business numbers eases – Media release
30 October 2013
New Zealand had 472,600 businesses at February 2013, down 0.2 percent from 2012, Statistics New Zealand said today.
"Business numbers reached their peak of almost 481,000 in 2009, but the number has declined every year for the past four years at 0.4 percent a year, on average," business infrastructure and performance manager Hamish Hill said.
Businesses can operate from more than one location – the total number of locations associated with these businesses was 507,900, down 0.1 percent on February 2012.
The longer-term trend between 2006 and 2013 showed the number of business locations increased by 3.0 percent nationally, with 10 out of the 16 regions showing increases. Auckland, Otago, and Nelson had increases of around 6 percent each. Two regions, Northland and Manawatu-Wanganui, each had a decrease of around 4 percent.
Results from the 2013 Census showed an increase in the census usually resident population count in 15 of the 16 regions over the same seven years. The highest population growth was seen in Auckland, Nelson, and Waikato.
"The relationship between population growth and the profile of businesses within regions is complex. Business cycles have periods of growth and decline, whereas consistent national population increases are more likely," Mr Hill said.
“The strong growth in Auckland for both is not surprising, but the population increase in Waikato was not matched by a similar level in business growth. There are many factors that can influence this such as the extent to which businesses can service a customer base beyond their physical location.”
In 2013, new business start-ups decreased by 5.2 percent from 2012, with closures exceeding start-ups for the fourth year in a row. Businesses without employees (such as the self-employed) had a higher combined proportion of start-ups and closures at 24 percent, compared with only 7.0 percent for employing businesses.