Czech CEOs are traditionally a little less optimistic about their future outlook than their global counterparts. Their responses are also marked by the extreme uncertainty that is currently prevalent in the Czech market. Many CEOs are not sure what to expect in a year from now. The good news is that there are more CEOs who expect their situation to improve this year (59% expect their revenues to grow) than those who expect to be worse off (41%). However, only 22% Czech CEOs are very confident about their growth this year, while the global average is 36%.
„Survey results show growing optimism. CEO confidence in revenue growth, particularly in the three forecasted economic revival expected globally as well as in the Czech Republic in 2014.“
Jiří Moser, Country managing partner, PwC Czech Republic
„The two factors that have the greatest impact on business are customers and competition. CEOs plan changes primarily in their customer relationships. They also want to differentiate themselves from their competition."
Patrik Horný, Partner, Advisory services, PwC Czech Republic
„Local companies remain conservative about their financing, which is not While a half of all CEOs believe that state financial support could improve the Czech Republic’s investment potential, not many of them actually use public funds for their business growth. Only 9% of CEOs plan to use public sources for funding this year – however that is an improvement from last year’s 2%. necessarily a bad thing in these turbulent times. Just like in our previous surveys, funding through internally generated cash flow is dominant, followed by bank lending. This shows that a number of businesses have sufficient cash reserves and that they trust the Czech banking system, which was able to support the Czech economy throughout the economic crisis.“
Petr Kříž, Leading Partner, Financial Services, PwC Czech Republic
„As the pressure to keep fixed costs low continues, more local companies find that the Czech market is becoming too small for them. Logically, they are looking to expand abroad, which allows them to offer their products to a broader customer base.While some producers, for example in software, simply need to translate their product and it is practically ready for the new market, producers of more classical products need to consider many specific aspects of the new markets, ranging from cultural differences to regulatory issues.“
Petr Zmátlík, Director, Private company services business consulting, PwC Czech Republic
„While during the crisis, businesses had to improve their operational effectiveness and cut costs in order to survive, CEOs continue to see opportunities for further improvements in this area. Let’s hope that they won’t simply try to lower their costs, but will aim to actually manage them.“
Petr Smutný, Partner, Corporate Finance and Restructuring, PwC Czech Republic
„CEOs are most worried about factors that they have no control over. Our experience from our past surveys confirms that. Many CEOs admitted that while they were able to firmly manage their companies through unstable times, they often felt disconnected from outside economic developments that they had to react to.“
Jiří Moser, Country Managing Partner, PwC Czech Republic
„Companies are starting to make an effort to evaluate their business from the perspective of what is going to happen in the next three to five years. If they want to grow, they need to start securing the needed personnel now. They are asking themselves:What kind of people are we going to need? They do realize that the required expertize and skills will differ somewhat from what they need right now.“
Libor Stodola, Human Resources Management, PwC Czech Republic
„Businesses only have a chosen successor for every other key role in their organisation. They need to train new ones for all the rest.We expect that the issue of succession will grow in importance not just in the case of family businesses, where the stakes include property transfer and control, but also in case of corporations, in order not to disrupt the continuity of their functioning."
Věra Výtvarová, Leading Partner, Assurance services, PwC Czech Republic
„Nearly 80% of CEOs are calling for tax incentives for innovation, but they do not realise that our tax system already offers them such treatment. This shows that it’s not always necessary to change tax laws – the state should put more effort into promoting the incentives that are already in place.“
Peter Chrenko, Leading Partner, Tax and Legal Services, PwC Czech Republic
“The greatest opportunity for innovation in public administration is the reform of administrative procedures and control mechanisms, including anti-corruption measures. CEOs would prefer this over innovations over innovations in the social sphere, transportation and safety in cities. To some extent, they even prefer this over introducing electronic services to the public - co called smart public administration.“
Karel Půbal, Director, Public Sector Consulting Services, PwC Czech Republic
Czech CEO Survey 2013
(pdf 2.3 MB)