In the report, Australian Business Trends 2014: How Australian business can capitalise on the latest global trends, the financial services firm examined ways in which businesses can benefit from new technologies and the accompanying explosion in the movement of goods, services, capital, people, ideas, cultures and values.
The report looks at the impact on consumption and identifies opportunities offered, with one billion people expected to enter the ‘middle class’ globally over the next two decades. The report said this spread of prosperity will offer a raft of opportunities for businesses that move first, and will present challenges to those that lag behind.
Jenny Wilson, customer strategy and insights partner with Deloitte Consulting, said Australian businesses are well placed to capitalise on the economic landscape due to their proximity to the growth markets of Asia.
“Strengthening our already strong relationships with the new global giants such as China and India will become more important than ever, as we seek to establish a stronger presence in their markets and their companies continue to enter ours,” she said.
Deloitte outlined a number of key points to help Australian businesses capitalise on the growth opportunities, noting that they should:
• Acquire a real understanding of the social, cultural, environmental and behavioural needs of these growth markets, whether via acquisition, alliance or through organic market entry;
• Find commonalities and patterns across markets and consumers;
• Listen to customers then interpret their unmet needs since this will be critical to success; and
• Adapt products and services to suit consumers with less money and different needs.
“Companies wanting to establish an Asian foothold will need to increasingly partner with local companies and to gain a far greater understanding of the unique dynamics of local cultures,” Ms Wilson said.
“Successfully reaching the next billion is also likely to require investments in new capabilities. But the opportunity is too great, and the longevity of the rewards for success too enduring, for many companies to ignore this massive demographic shift.
“It will be the forward-looking Australian businesses that proactively take opportunities to innovate and serve the needs of low-income consumers in the Asia-Pacific region which will enjoy the benefits of increased market share, profit growth and brand differentiation,” concluded Ms Wilson.