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BCC: businesses have mixed expectations about 2011


Nearly 50% of member companies of the Business Centre Club (BCC) expect their financial performance to improve this year, but as many as 40% predict a deterioration, according to a survey carried out at the turn of January/February. Just under 12% of the respondents said they anticipated no change in 2011.

The balance of optimists less pessimists is bigger when it comes to job creation, with more than 42% of the respondents planning to increase employment, against 34% anticipating no change and nearly 23% saying they will cut jobs. And it is bigger still with respect to wage levels: 57% of the surveyed firms predict no changes in wage levels, but 37% are planning to raise wages, with less than 6% saying they will cut remuneration.

Over 60% of the surveyed companies expect a rise in costs this year, by an average of 10%.

Nearly 40% say their investments will be at last year’s level, while one in three expects an increase in capex spending (by an average of 25%), whereas 28% predict investments will be 20-30% lower. Exactly half of the respondents said they will rely exclusively on own cash for financing their investments; over 20% mentioned a combination of own cash and loans, 12% said they will rely on loans only, a similar number mentioned a mix of own cash and several external sources, and just under 5% mentioned bond or share issues.

Meanwhile, companies gave a highly positive assessment of last year, with 55% describing their condition in 2010 as good or very good, 30% calling it “average”, and less than 10% saying it was bad (none described it as very bad).

The BCC has 2,500 members (persons and companies).

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