The Deloitte’s eighth annual Global Powers of Consumer Products report for the 2013 to June 2014 fiscal year found this year was challenging for the global economy but there are significant opportunities within the Australian and Asia-Pacific region.

The report shows because we are close to Asia we are likely to benefit from the growth opportunities within Asia’s growing middle class. As well, Australia’s ageing population, by virtue of its growing spending power, means domestic consumer needs will continue to shift to higher quality products.

Other positive factors included a lower dollar and new free trade agreements. However, despite all this positivity, only one Australian consumer product company resides in the Global Top 250 (Coca-Cola Amatil, 151st).

Another negative factor has been the downturn in mining-related construction which the report predicts has further to run, so Australia’s national income growth is expected to remain weak. With the Federal Government still looking for Budget savings and consumer confidence somewhat fragile, the relatively healthy consumer spending environment currently being seen may gradually fade over time.

Almost a third of the top 250 companies operate in Australia

Almost a third of the top 250 companies have business operations in Australia and according to Deloitte’s Katie McNamara: “Firm consumer confidence levels remain a key positive driver for the consumer product sector.  The strong showing by Asian companies in the Global Top 250 highlights the regional opportunities on our doorstep.  Given the growing Asian middle class and their desire for fresh, clean and safe produce, Australian consumer goods is a strategically appealing industry, with significant opportunities in consumer products, food and beverage, manufacturing, dairy and other agribusiness.”

The Deloitte report identified a growing appetite for high end, premium products within Australia – especially for value-added food processing – as one of 25 compelling growth opportunities over the next 20 years.

McNamara said the fall in the price of oil is having a considerable impact on the global economy: “It is boosting consumer purchasing power in oil-consuming nations such as Japan, India, the US, and much of Europe, and contributing to faster economic growth than would otherwise be the case.”

Top 10 Global Consumer Products Companies fiscal 2013 to June 2014

1. Samsung

2. Apple

3. Nestle

4. The Proctor & Gamble Company

5. Sony

6. PepsiCo

7. Unilever Group

8. LG Electronics

9. The Coca-Cola Company

10. JBS S.A.