Given how important agriculture is to the New Zealand economy, it’s pleasing to see businesses in this sector continue to acquire new equipment and technology. More than half (53.3 per cent) of all businesses in the forestry industry intend to acquire assets in the forthcoming quarter and almost half of all farm businesses (44.8 per cent) have the same intentions.
Of these, one quarter are planning to invest in big data, robots, artificial intelligence or drones, while 12.5 per cent are investing in services and process automation compared to the national average of 13.4 per cent.
With access to a relatively large pool of funds, the research indicates 20.0 per cent of upper corporates intend to invest in Industry 4.0 assets. However, a total of 22.3 per cent of all New Zealand businesses plan to acquire computers and IT assets during the September quarter, the majority of which are SMEs.
While the smaller end of town is looking to invest in more traditional IT, the larger end is moving towards more transformational technology at a far faster rate.
When it comes to managing their financial resources, more than half (54.8 per cent) stated the ‘cost of capital’ as their most challenging constraint, followed by ‘difficulty accessing capital’, at 30.4 per cent.
What’s interesting about these results is that 57.1 per cent of upper corporates stated cost of capital as their most challenging constraint, compared with only 49.7 per cent of SMEs. Normally it would be assumed that this would be less of an issue for upper corporates and more so for SMEs. Could it be that upper corporates are beginning to review how they access capital more carefully than before?
Overall, New Zealand’s economic position is very positive with strong growth across multiple industries. With a continuing increase of businesses looking to acquire new and innovative technology, New Zealand businesses are set to give the rest of the world a real run for their money.
NB. The research and publication of the Equipment Demand Index were conducted under Maia Financial’s previous name, Alleasing.