PwC Study of Swiss SMEs and Family Businesses
Energy situation: yes to the concern, no to the crisis
- Energy is considered the third concern of SMEs, along with inflation.
- 47% of participating companies do not expect a drop in turnover
- 54% of companies surveyed are already saving electricity
- 68% could continue to function with limited power
- 88% of responding companies are not considering downsizing
- More than 91% of the companies in the study do not see their existence threatened by the energy crisis
Everyone talks about the energy crisis, but what do the companies involved really think about it? How do they assess the risk of rising energy prices and the threat of energy shortages? And how do they prepare for an emergency? In an attempt to answer this and many other questions related to the energy issue, PwC Switzerland conducted a survey of 137 SMEs and family businesses. “The energy crisis is worrying small and medium-sized Swiss companies, and it’s not keeping them awake at night. SMEs do not see their existence threatened and are well prepared for emergencies,” concludes Norbert Kühnis, Head of Family Businesses and SMEs at PwC Switzerland.
An important concern, without being the main one
In the barometer of business concerns, the energy crisis tied for third place with inflation, with 45% of mentions. Current supply chain issues are of greatest concern to policymakers. Cited by 65% of companies, the shortage of skilled labor is therefore top of mind for Swiss companies, across all sectors and sizes combined. 45% of companies surveyed indicate that the energy crisis worries them very little, if at all. 47% do not expect their billing to suffer from the energy crisis. 22% estimate the expected revenue loss to be between 1% and 4%.
In view of the emergency
83% of the companies surveyed are convinced that they know where their potential for effective energy savings lies in the event of a crisis. Already today, 54% of them are reducing their electricity consumption. 30% have created a crisis unit that has already implemented measures or is working on such measures. Only one in ten companies (12%) say they have not planned or implemented any measures. Among companies that have already developed energy-saving measures, 57% believe that they are already effective and 24% that they will be effective in a few weeks. Two-thirds of participating companies could continue to operate even if electricity and gas supplies were reduced due to a power shortage.
Guaranteed jobs and existence
88% of companies surveyed are not considering reducing their workforce to deal with rising energy costs. For nearly two-thirds (63%), working from home is not a viable solution either. The surveyed companies are unanimous: 91% of the responding companies believe that their existence will not be threatened by the energy crisis in the next six months.
About this study
The brief study on the energy crisis was carried out by PwC in November 2022 based on an online questionnaire. 137 Swiss companies took part in the survey. 42% of them belong to the processing industry. The others operate in the areas of construction, retail, IT, communication, entertainment, hotels and restaurants, energy and in the world of finance. 47% of the surveyed companies employ more than 250 people, 17% less than 50 people.
PwC Switzerland is a leader in auditing and consulting in Switzerland. PwC works to build trust in society and solve important problems. Our network of companies is established in 152 countries and employs around 328,000 people driven by the same desire to provide quality services in the areas of auditing, legal and tax advice and business consulting. With 3,480 employees and partners, PwC Switzerland has 14 sites in Switzerland and one in the Principality of Liechtenstein. For more information and to contact us, visit our website www.pwc.ch. “PwC” means the PwC network and/or one or more affiliated companies, each of which is a separate legal entity. For more information, visit www.pwc.com/structure.
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