An extract from the article “CFOs think time’s right for growth” (Drummond, 6/11/13, the Financial Review).
Paradoxically, risk aversion has seen CFOs at big public companies act more like private equity firms in recent years – cutting and spending on growth at the same time. The difference is the spending has been largely internal, ensuring any growth costs less to achieve.
Many have also taken the opportunity to spend, mostly on technology, as they cut people to boost productivity so costs don’t blow out again when top-line growth returns.[W]ith some notable exceptions in retail and resources – the majority think that growth moment has arrived.