Kiwi SMEs more confident than Aussies
After outperforming their Australian counterparts in 2015, New Zealand small business operators are more confident of improved revenue this year, according to the latest review of trans-Tasman business performance from MYOB.  
The MYOB Business Monitor found that Australia’s SME (small to medium enterprise) economy fell behind New Zealand’s over 2015. In the second half of the year, the proportion of Australian SME operators reporting a fall in revenue (30 percent) significantly outweighed those who saw a rise in revenue in the 12 months prior to the survey (22 percent). In contrast, 31 percent of New Zealand SMEs reported a revenue rise in 2015 and 25 percent saw their revenues decline. 
MYOB CEO Tim Reed says that the relative performances in the two country’s SME economies over the previous 12 months have had a major impact on how confident local business operators are going into 2016. 
“Given the solid performance of New Zealand’s SME businesses in 2015, it is no surprise that operators are also more optimistic about improving their performance this year,” he says. 
When asked how they expected their business revenue to fare in 12 months’ time, a large number of New Zealand operators are forecasting growth (34 percent), while fewer (21 percent) expect revenue to fall. Australia is more finally balanced, with 28 percent of operators expecting a revenue increase this year and 27 percent a decline.
The Business Monitor also revealed that Australian SMEs are investing more in employment, marketing and advertising than their Kiwi counterparts, but in New Zealand small business owners have more of a focus on technology. Almost half (47 percent) of New Zealand respondents said they had acquired computer hardware or software for their business in the last 12 months. This is compared to the 31 percent of Australian respondents who said the same.