The outlook appears to be bright as 88 per cent of Asean chief executive officers (CEOs) are confident about their company’s growth prospect in the next three years, a sentiment shared by 90 per cent of CEOs globally.
However, according to the 2018 Global CEO Outlook report by KPMG International, this optimism is married with a healthy dose of realism as 77 per cent of Asean leaders are predicting a cautious revenue growth of two per cent or less over the next three years for their organization. More than half of CEOs in Asean (64 per cent) also noted the need to hit growth targets before hiring new skills. Consequently, they expect headcount to increase by less than 5 per cent over the next three years.
This evidence of pragmatism does not surprise KPMG in Malaysia managing partner Datuk Johan Idris, who commented that across the board, CEOs are driving growth against a backdrop of significant demographic shifts, geopolitical volatility and the seemingly inevitable future cyberattacks. “It’s clear that driving growth in 2018 and beyond will require CEOs to combine resourcefulness and realism in equal measure.”
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