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Krka ranks among the world’s elite companies with steady long-time growth

27 January 2012

The results of the research conducted by a renowned business magazine Harvard Business Review* ranked Krka Group among the ten elite companies in the world with stable annual growth between 1999 and 2009.

The aim of the research conducted by the Harvard Business Review was to answer the question: How many publicly traded companies with a market capitalization of at least US$ 1 billion grew by 5% each year between 1999 and 2009. Researchers were looking for steady performance and not compound annual growth. The results were surprising – only 10 of the 2,347 companies that qualified across that entire period grew their net income by 5% in all 10 years. And only five grew both revenues and net profit every year. In addition to Krka, there are three more companies from the USA, two companies from India and Spain and one company from Japan and China that make up the elite ten.  

The elite group: ten companies with steady annual growth between 1999-2009

Company

Country

Industry

Established

Infosys

India

Information technology

1981

Yahoo Japan

Japan

Internet search and navigation

1996

HDFC Bank

India

Banks and credit unions

1994

ACS

Spain

Commercial and heavy construction

1983

Cognizant

USA

Information technology

1994

Tsingtao Brewery

China

Beer production

1903

Indra Sistemas

Spain

Information technology

1993

Krka

Slovenia

Pharmaceuticals

1954

FactSet Research Systems

USA

Information collection and delivery

1978

Atmos Energy

USA

Natural distribution and marketing

1906

The magazine states that big companies strive for stable and predictable growth, which is what investors prize above all else. However, the contrast between what investors expect and what the vast majority of companies deliver is considerable, which is why the author of the research Rita Gunther McGrath thinks that factors which contribute to corporate performance should be reconsidered. She emphasizes that steady, continual growth is difficult to achieve even at modest rates, never mind by the double digits that companies are fond of promising. On one hand, the research has identified common traits that they do have and those that they do not.  

Success as the result of stability and flexibility
These successful companies that have made the list adjust rapidly, make small bets early and diversify their portfolios, manage major resource allocations centrally, do a considerable amount of innovation, are quick and flexible, appreciate acquisitions and use them as an opportunity for future development and quick moves into new markets, which they do very successfully. They introduce new technologies, explore new business models, open up new industries and enter new markets. 

The research emphasizes that successful companies are also incredibly stable. Changes which they undergo are evolutionary rather than revolutionary. Their management invest considerably in corporate culture, shared values, employee training and leadership development. They know how to hold on to talented employees. They avoid dramatic divestitures and reorganisation of the business operation and have a reliable and steady base of clients. These companies do not change high-level strategies quickly and frequently and the highest leadership is stable. Chief executives of all the 10 companies were promoted to this position internally.  

Unconventional characteristics of successful companies
Research has shown that there are some conventional characteristics which growing companies are thought to have that these companies do not have. In this way for example, their growth is not determined by the growth of the industry they are in. Similarly, growth does not depend on the size of the company, which is in opposition to the common belief that it is difficult to maintain steady growth when a company is growing larger and larger. It has also been established that continual growth is not conditioned by their presence on fast-growing markets and globalised business. Successful companies may only be present on local and regional markets or globally. For companies on an elite list it is also not characteristic that presence on developed or high growth markets influences high growth. Growth also did not get slower with company’s age. They have all successfully overcome big changes in globalised business operations, technologies and business practises.     

* Harvard Business Review is a professional monthly magazine about general business management, published since 1922. Articles are based on research findings and are intended for readers involved in business management. It is a renowned publication among academics, company directors and business consultants.  Business schools across the world often use it as a teaching aid.   


   
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