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Azets Barometer

Backing your Ambition

The Azets Barometer January 2024 is the first in a new series of triannual reports, providing the latest business insights from hundreds of business leaders, identifying trends relating to economic outlook, financial performance, and emerging threats and opportunities.

Explore the dashboard

We back ambitious businesses. As part of this, we regularly survey hundreds of business leaders to equip them with information relating to business trends, economic outlook, financial performance, and emerging threats and opportunities.

The Azets Barometer provides insight into the current and future business climate through the perspective of ambitious mid-market, entrepreneurial, owner-managed, and family-owned businesses across the markets we serve in the UK, Ireland, Norway, Finland, Sweden, and Denmark.

Explore the interactive dashboard below where you can tailor the report by turnover, number of employees, country and sector.


Overall key findings

  • Overall, businesses are cautiously optimistic for the year ahead, with a mean optimism score of 5.6 out of 10
  • Half (50%) of respondents across all regions rated their level of optimism at a score of 6 or higher, with Ireland (7.4) and Denmark (6.9) the most optimistic
  • Turnover/revenue (6.1), profit (5.8), and headcount (5.5) are all expected to increase in the next 12 months, with a strong focus on strategic investment in digitalisation (6.4), cyber security (6.3), and sustainability practices (6.1)
  • Economic and geopolitical uncertainties are the highest concerns across all regions, each scoring 5.7
  • Nearly 1 in 5 businesses (17%) show no engagement in succession planning, reflected in a moderate overall mean score of 5.1
  • Overall, businesses feel that their country's tax regime inhibits their performance in growth (4.8), innovation (4.9), sustainability (4.9), and recruitment (4.8)



The Azets Barometer reflects the views of more than 1,600 business leaders, revealing an average economic outlook score of 5.6 and indicating cautious optimism and a blend of hope with realism about ongoing challenges for the year ahead. Now more than ever, growing businesses require specialist advice against a backdrop of complex economic and geopolitical uncertainties. We pride ourselves on our ability to understand and meet the needs of these ambitious businesses.

Chris Horne
Group Chief Executive Officer

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