COVID-19 drags down aggregate revenue of top 50 APAC firms by 2.1% in 2020, reveals GlobalData

The COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on the financial performance of the top companies across the Asia-Pacific (APAC) in 2020. The year-on-year aggregate revenue of the top 50 APAC companies declined by 2.1% to $5,651.2bn in 2020, according to GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

An analysis of GlobalData’s Company Interim Reports Database reveals that 21 companies out of the list reported a decline in their revenue, 20 could manage slow to moderate growth of up to 10%, and only nine companies experienced above 10% growth rate. The list included 29 companies from China, out of which 24 registered year-on-year growth.

Alisha Bajpai Singh, Company Profiles Analyst at GlobalData, comments: “The performance of most of the Chinese companies improved during the period, which mitigated the overall impact of the pandemic, which could have been worse.”

The consolidated revenue of the Chinese enterprises grew 0.4%, followed by Taiwan (5.2%). However, India, South Korea, and Japan reported a decline of (15.2%), (3.8%), and (6.6%), respectively.

Chinese retailing and construction firms drove the growth in the revenue, with 34.7% and 10.1% annual growth, respectively.

Ms Singh explains: “China’s economic recovery has been quicker than that of other countries, supported by its stringent and swift measures in controlling the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has led to the better performance of Chinese enterprises compared to others.”

Among the top 50, Alibaba posted the maximum growth of 40.7%, facilitated by strong performance from China commerce retail and cloud computing business segments.

Ms Singh continues: “Increase in average unit price per click and volumes of paid clicks, and substantial growth in gross merchandise value of online physical goods in China retail marketplace helped Alibaba achieve such an exceptional y-o-y revenue growth.”

Among the Japanese firms, only Dai-ichi Life Holdings Inc reported a growth of above 10%, due to higher investment income and reinsurance income; while Sony Corp could manage a moderate growth of 9%, supported by improvement in its financial services business.

In South Korea, Hyundai Motor and SK Inc were affected by the pandemic with a decline of 2.8% and 17.4% in revenue. However, Samsung Electronics was able to enhance its revenue because of accelerated sales of consumer electronics and semiconductor offerings.

On the sectoral basis, financial services topped the list with 15 companies, followed by technology and communication (8), oil and gas (7), construction, (7), automotive (5), retailing (4), and consumer (1), and others (3).

Ms Singh concludes: “The COVID-19 pandemic has forced companies across the APAC region to re-evaluate business strategies to capture new marketplace opportunities. As firms redefine success in the post-pandemic era, GlobalData foresees them developing a rapid response to support business continuity through the crisis and beyond.”

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