PwC's 10th Annual CEO Survey records increased levels of optimism among business leaders in Cyprus. In the context of the 24th global survey conducted with the participation of 5.050 CEOs from 100 countries, PwC Cyprus presented for the 10th consecutive year its local survey which saw a record participation of 135 business leaders in Cyprus.
An improved outlook
According to the results, there is a significant increase in the percentage of CEOs who believe that global economic growth will improve during next 12 months, reaching 61% compared to only 18% in 2020.
In terms of growth and profitability of their own organisations, 77% of CEOs in Cyprus say they are confident about their revenue growth prospects in the next 12 months, while on a three-year horizon, confidence levels rise to 88%.
Threats to growth
Despite CEOs’ rise in optimism, the results show that their level of concern has also increased compared to 2020 for most of the threats examined in the survey. Based on the current situation, the pandemic is the dominant issue, with 59% of CEOs in Cyprus stating they are ‘extremely concerned’ about the impact of pandemics and other health crises on their organisation’s growth prospects.
The top five most important business, economic, social and environmental threats in Cyprus also include uncertain economic growth with 53% (marking a significant increase compared to last year’s 32%) and geopolitical uncertainty with the same percentage of 53%. It is followed by policy uncertainty with 43% (compared to 26% in 2020) and over-regulation with 39%.
According to the survey results, 83% of CEOs in Cyprus plan to increase their long-term investments in digital transformation over the next 3 years. Paradoxically, cyberthreats are not included in the top 5 threats despite the registered increase in concern compared to previous years. At the same time, CEOs in Cyprus are placing cyber security and data privacy (52%) lower compared to the investments they are planning for their digital transformation.
The climate change challenge
CEOs appear to be concerned about climate change and environmental damage but not to a large extent, as only 28% see this as a threat to their company’s growth prospects, while only 30% of business leaders in Cyprus factor climate change into their strategic risk management activities.
The 10th Cyprus CEO survey was presented during a special online event on 21 April attended by Bob Moritz, Global Chairman of PwC.
Mr Moritz noted that: “The pandemic did accelerate the trends we were already seeing, forcing everybody to proceed with digital transformation, all at the same time. This process was done in order to achieve survival in those conditions. Digital reform is now a prerequisite for organizations to succeed”.
The panel discussion that followed was coordinated by PwC Cyprus CEO, Evgenios Evgeniou and Bob Moritz and was attended by Andrea Antoniou, Regional Director, Eastern and Southern Europe, Iron Mountain and Antonis Polemitis, CEO of the University of Nicosia.
Commenting on the findings of the local survey, Mr. Evgeniou noted that 2021 is a landmark year, as we celebrate 10 years since CEOs in Cyprus embraced this initiative and voiced their views in the context of the global survey. "The dual role of the pandemic as an accelerator of pre-existing trends and an enhancer of power of change is reflected in the survey. Today's environment leads to the rapid evolution of companies which are called to address multiple challenges as well as to invest in technology and their people in order to prepare for the future".