Great companies are long-term market makers, presenting ideas and products which shape and impact a future people didn't know was possible, says Thomas Pippos, Deloitte chief executive.
"These companies can shake up how we engage with our world and each other, and understand what people value most. They are resilient and can adopt."
Commenting on the 2020 Company of the Year finalists for the Deloitte Top 200 awards, Pippos says the ability to make a positive difference to the way the world operates while bringing vision and purpose has been particularly highlighted by the Covid-19 pandemic.
This year's finalists are global kiwifruit marketer Zespri, the country's leading wine exporter Delegat Group, and global medical devices manufacturer and supplier Fisher and Paykel Healthcare.
Pippos says successful companies navigate a crisis like Covid by stepping up to the challenge, and utilising their resilience, they are prepared to adapt as the situation requires.
"Standout companies can bend without breaking, adjust to the market's changing needs, hold onto what works, let go of what doesn't and find the space to differentiate themselves from everyone else. They stay calm and deliberate when others are not.
"They have taken the opportunity of resetting their business, reconnecting with their teams and rebuilding for the futures," Pippos says.
Zespri, Delegat and Fisher and Paykel Healthcare have had impressive years. Despite the Covid crisis, Zespri delivered New Zealand-grown kiwifruit earlier than normal to meet overseas demand.
Over the selling season, Tauranga-based Zespri used 49 chartered vessels and 17,829 refrigerated containers to ship 157 million Class 1 trays of green and gold kiwifruit, or 600,000 tonnes, to more than 50 countries. SunGold's harvest was the largest ever and outstripped green's sales 87m trays to 70m.
Auckland-based Delegat, well down its path of becoming one of the world's Super Premium wine companies, achieved record sales of 3.27m cases, up 9 per cent, and net profit of $60.8m, up 20 per cent, for the financial year ending June.
Fisher and Paykel Healthcare, also based in Auckland, sold record respiratory equipment with its hospital product group growing revenue by 93 per cent during the six months ending September. Overall, the company had a 59 per cent increase in revenue to $910.2m and 86 per cent in net profit to $225.5m for its half-year. Its share price has moved from $23 in March to nearly $36 in November.
Pippos says risk and innovation are important to long-term business success, but this doesn't mean an organisation needs to risk it all to get ahead in the market. "In fact, it's often the opposite – with constant incremental innovation resulting in sustainable gains posing the lowest risk.
"It is important for organisations to understand the areas they want to be innovative and test this against their own appetite for risk – finding the right balance is the key."
Deloitte Top 200 Awards were established in 1990 and are held annually to recognise and applaud outstanding individual and management team performances among New Zealand's largest companies and trading organisations.
Last year's Company of the Year winner was global transport and logistics operator, Mainfreight. All the Deloitte Top 200 winners will be revealed at a lunch event this Thursday.
The event will also include the special "Visionary Leader" award. Click here for a full list of finalists.
Company of the Year finalists – Sponsored by Deloitte
• Fisher & Paykel Healthcare
• Delegat Group