The business of growth and expansion
The outlook for enterprises seems bright with optimism back in the boardroom. According to KPMG’s 2021 CEO Outlook (Singapore report), 92% of Singapore CEOs are confident about Singapore’s growth outlook while 96% predict their company’s earnings will rise in the next 3 years.
The appetite for mergers and acquisitions among Singapore CEOs has also spiked to a 3-year high, with 92% sharing that they would make acquisitions with moderate to significant impact on their overall organisations in the next 3 years.
Still, there will be greater urgency among enterprises to transform their operations to become more productive and sustainable amid increasing costs on all front, manpower shortages and cash flow.
Organic growth in areas such as research and development and capital investments remains an important strategy in the post-pandemic recovery journey of businesses, alongside strategic alliances. Talent also remains critical for enterprise growth and competitiveness, with flexible working arrangements and the need for specialised talent featuring prominently in the manpower sector.
The rise of Singapore as a wealth and asset management hub
In the last decade, Singapore has strengthened its position as a global financial services hub, taking impressive strides in transforming its offerings to meet the changing needs of customers. COVID-19 accelerated digitalisation in the industry, with customer demand for smooth, personalised and touchless technology seeding new opportunities for growth.
Going forward, financial institutions are likely to continue to see high returns, especially in wealth management and personal banking, as digital innovation democratises wealth management, breaking down the barriers for services most often reserved for high-net-worth individuals. This will create new opportunities to expand the scope of wealth management services and products to customer segments that have typically been underserved such as the core affluent group.
Singapore has also enhanced its reputation as an asset management hub in recent years. But for the nation to become the default go-to location for global funds, it will be important to find ways to convince investors and fund sponsors to shift over from established locations. Investor familiarity, tax neutrality and GST treatments may factor heavily in cementing Singapore’s status as a hub for asset management and domiciliation.
Digital love: Deepening tech innovation
It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the pace of digitalisation in Singapore and collectively lifted the entire nation’s digital literacy. From digital onboarding for payments among hawker centres, to video conferences and QR codes, Singaporeans have been given real-world training into how businesses and consumers can embrace and integrate new technologies into their daily lives.
This paves the way for the growth of the digital economy and a future shaped by 5G technology. Continuous investments in digital services and innovation remain critical, and Singapore will have to continue to deepen its technology capabilities through collaborations.