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Ernst & Young: Romanian companies focus on strengthening ties with clients in 2011

Romania's top performing companies overcame the majority of the economic crisis' effects by cutting costs and reinforcing business relations with clients, suppliers and partners, according to a study conducted by Ernst & Young consultancy company and sent to Agerpres.

The study entitled A New Growth Outlook shows the strategies the performing firms operating on the Romanian market have adopted in the context of the economic crisis in order to consolidate their position on the market and their profitability and also the foreseen measures for adapting to the upcoming evolutions of the market.

Regarding the funding sources, over 60 percent of respondents indicated the banking credit as their first option. Nevertheless, on the other hand the tougher conditions of the market stimulated players to shift their interest towards other types of funding sources, such as their own sources, European funds or even venture capital sources.

All companies included in the study, moving upwards and having success amid tough market conditions, share the unanimous belief according to which their employees are very important and the performance acquired by the company relies on the abilities and competence of their teams.

The expectations for the future are quite optimistic, with 75 percent of the polled firms forecasting significant opportunities for their businesses unfolded in Romania and 47 percent for the EU markets. Furthermore, they opine the performance of their firms will further improve in the coming two years, concerning the brand's notoriety on the local market and the diversification of their portfolio including products and services.

Nevertheless, the performing companies are aware that the changes to emerge among the clients' preferences will require substantial answers: 42 percent think the innovation stands for the answer, 35 percent predict the need of adjusting operational processes while 27 percent believe they have to recalibrate the company's structure.

Amid possible stagnation scenarios or a decline of the market, most successful companies are ready to maintain their current position, whereas 40 percent intend to adopt a strategy meant to transform the market through innovation. Only 3 percent think about leaving the market under these circumstances, while 8 percent would appeal to foreign funding, in order to gain a better market position.

The study is based on a survey conducted at end-Oct. 2011, on a sample of 172 companies recording notable performance in their industry or geographical area (with a positive profit in 2010). Among the polled companies, 47 percent have Romanian capital while 53 percent are foreign firms.