Austpec Holdings Chairman, Andrew Northcott attends annual Forbes CEO conference. The Annual invitation only Forbes CEO conference is attended by 400 global CEO’s, tycoons, entrepreneurs, capitalists and thought leaders.
Speakers for the event ranged from Singapore Prime Minister, Lee Hsien Loong. Steve Forbes, Anthony Pratt, John Scully, Lindsay Fox, Eduardo Saverin, Paul Conway and many other high profile global leaders.
The conference largely focused on the rapidly changing global environment and how CEO’s can manage low global growth with changing economic drivers combined with the influence of significant growth in the emerging markets and what opportunities present.
The major themes and opportunities that existed throughout the 3 days were based around the major consumption themes throughout the growing Asian middle class and populations generally. Broadly speaking, food security and food supply to Indonesia, Malaysia, China and other large Asian populations was a common theme along with availability of energy and healthcare as significant opportunities going forward. Discussions around the need for energy supply for the emerging markets in both the long and short term was a significant discussions topic with all having great concerns about the limitations of oil supply in the future.
The significant issues facing Europe were discussed and some suggesting that there are pockets whereby distressed assets are now looking as though value is appearing although the need to be cautious is certainly top of mind.
Opportunities such as mobile and technology enabled healthcare was discussed by John Scully and Enuardo Saverin at length and the significant opportunities that this provides in terms of global scale.
The Chinese economy was portrayed as going through a period of change whereby the manufacturing sector needs to evolve to remain competitive given cost pressures along with the crack down on corruption causing the luxury sector to slow over the next 12 months but signs are promising for a pick up in consumer spending late 2015 / early 2016 and the real opportunities which exist in the enormous middle class. India was also seen as a significant opportunity with the Pratt Family’s Visy Group making significant investments into India backing the new Prime Minister to make significant changes and see the country prosper.