Açoriano Oriental
Business turnover in 2022 up 25% compared to pre-pandemic period

Turnover of Azorean companies far exceeded 2019 figures and the 200 largest companies recorded almost 4 billion euros in turnover last year

Business turnover in 2022 up 25% compared to pre-pandemic period

Autor: Rui Jorge Cabral

The turnover of Azorean companies in 2022 was 25% higher than before the pandemic, in 2019.

This is a sign of a strong economic recovery, to which the sharp rise in inflation has also greatly contributed, after two very difficult years in 2020 and 2021. In fact, the 200 largest companies in the Azores recorded almost 4 billion euros in turnover last year.

The data was presented by Informa D&B during the launch at Teatro Micaelense of the 100 Largest Companies in the Azores 2022 magazine, published by Açormedia since 1985. Informa D&B's analysis of the turnover evolution of Azorean companies reveals that in 2020, the year in which the Covid-19 pandemic had the greatest impact on the economy, there was an overall drop of 10% in turnover compared to 2019. The overall drop of 10% represents an average between almost total losses of companies that stopped invoicing during the pandemic and those that increased invoicing during this period.

In 2021, a year in which many of the pandemic's restrictive measures were slowly eased, there was already a slight economic recovery, with the turnover of Azorean companies exceeding the 2019 figures by 3%.

However, it was last year that the real recovery took place, with a 25% increase in turnover compared to 2019, although in this respect companies in the Azores lagged the growth of companies on the mainland, just ahead of companies in Madeira, whose turnover grew by 23% in 2022 compared to pre-pandemic figures.

On the mainland, for example, the turnover of companies in Alentejo grew by 35% compared to 2019; in the Center and the Lisbon Metropolitan Area, the growth was 32%; in Algarve it reached 28% and, in the North, the growth in turnover was 26% compared to 2019.

As Informa D&B sales director António Barreiros told Açoriano Oriental, "some sectors in the Azores, particularly in the area of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), fell short of growth expectations". However, António Barreiros recognizes that "we are still talking about relatively small differences compared to other regions of the country, with the Azores even ahead of Madeira; it is difficult for the Azores to make growth comparisons with regions such as Greater Lisbon or Algarve", which have great levers in tourism, with a greater weight in the economy than the Azores.

In fact, Informa D&B's analysis of the turnover evolution by sector of activity for the 200 largest companies in the Azores shows that the service sector (strongly affected by the pandemic lockdowns) recorded an increase in turnover in 2022 compared to 2021, with figures above 30%.

On the other hand, the only sector of activity in the 200 largest companies that lost turnover last year compared to 2021 was ICT, which recorded a loss of 7%, largely justified by the fact that, during the pandemic, there was a real 'rush' to buy computer equipment for home work and schooling. It is therefore only natural that, after this period of extraordinary sales, there would be a return to normality, with a drop compared to the turnover generated during the pandemic.


63% of the 200 largest companies in the Azores have a good ESG Score
More than half (63%) of the 200 largest companies in the Azores have a medium-high or high ESG Score, according to an analysis by Informa D&B revealed during the launch session of the 100 Largest Companies in the Azores 2022 magazine, which took place at Teatro Micaelense.

The ESG Score refers to the position companies hold at a given time based on their environmental, social responsibility and governance practices.

According to Informa D&B, 34% of the 200 largest companies in the Azores registered a high ESG Score and 29% of the 200 largest companies registered a medium-high ESG Score, figures that contrast with the rest of the Azorean business community and even with the business community of the country as a whole, where only 9% of companies have a high ESG Score and less than 25% of companies have a medium-high ESG Score. The performance of the 200 largest companies in the Azores in terms of ESG Score is relevant because, as Informa D&B sales director António Barreiros said during the presentation of the magazine 100 Largest Companies in the Azores 2022, "this is a factor that will increasingly be on the agenda".

António Barreiros also warned that concerns about the environment, social responsibility and good governance, which are currently only mandatory for the largest companies, will very quickly become mandatory for the entire business fabric, influencing critical factors for company sustainability, such as access to banks for financing, with companies having a good ESG Score obtaining better interest in the future than companies with less attention to this area.

António Barreiros concluded that "in the future, it will be just as important to have a good Annual Report as it will be to have a good Sustainability Report".


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