88% of Indian are actively investing in building resilience: PwC survey

99% of Indian business leaders are confident about balancing growth with managing risk, 62% are proactively taking risks to create opportunities and 60% seek to uncover opportunities within risks- PwC’s Global Risk Survey 2023

88% of Indian organisations are actively investing in building resilience over the last 12 months.

  • Cyber risks are the biggest threat faced by Indian organisations, say 38% of India respondents, followed closely by climate change (37%) and inflation (36%).
  • Globally, inflation is cited as the biggest risk followed by cyber risks and macroeconomic volatility at 37% and 33% respectively.
  • More than half of the Indian respondents are planning to invest in cybersecurity tools (55%) and AI, machine learning and automation technologies (55%) in the next 1-3 years.
  • 69% Indian businesses are seeing technology disruptors like Gen AI as opportunities.

New Delhi, 22 December, 2023:  More than half of business leaders in India are looking at harnessing the opportunities brought in by risks, while also taking risks to create new opportunities, despite growing concerns around cybersecurity, climate change, inflation and digital and technology risks. This is according to PwC’s 2023 Global Risk Survey- India edition, published today. 

Cybersecurity tops the risk radar of Indian organisations

Cyber risks are cited as the biggest threat faced by Indian organisations with 38% respondents feeling highly or extremely exposed to it. With this, cybersecurity has jumped two spots from number three to number one on the risk radar when compared to the 2022 Global Risk Survey. Other digital and technology risks are also top concerns for business leaders in India (at 35%). To address the challenges, Indian organisations are making bold investments in cybersecurity with more than half of the respondents planning to invest in cybersecurity tools (55%) and AI, machine learning and automation technologies (55%) in the next 1-3 years. To back these investments,  71% of Indian organisations are gathering and analysing cybersecurity and IT data for risk management and opportunity identification. Globally 61% of the organisations are doing the same.

Bullish about balancing risk and growth

A significant insight from this year’s survey is that 99% of Indian business leaders are confident their organisation can balance growth with managing risk effectively, of which 66% are very confident of the same. Globally these figures stand at 91% and 40% respectively.

Sivarama Krishnan, Partner and Leader, Risk Consulting, PwC India said: “Our 2023 Global Risk Survey shows that Indian business leaders are not only demonstrating an increased appetite for taking risks but are also doing a reasonable job of identifying opportunities presented by risks. This mindset shift is critical for an organisation's progress- it will not only help businesses be better prepared to manage risks, but also grow, build resilience, deliver outcomes and create value for all stakeholders. A positive, proactive enterprise-wide risk strategy is one of the first steps towards building trust in a business. It is not surprising that 41% of our respondents highlight they have already better aligned their risk management with business strategy- Indian businesses seem to be well on course to use risk to their advantage.”

Unlocking the power of data to manage risk and identify opportunities

71% of Indian organisations gather and analyse cybersecurity and IT data for risk management and opportunity identification, against the global figure of 61%. Similarly, 63% of Indian companies are analysing regulatory and compliance data for risk management and opportunity identification, against the global figure of 50%. Supply chain and logistics data and environment and sustainability data are also helping 60% Indian companies with risk management and opportunity identification. Globally these figures are 46% and 43% respectively.

Open to harnessing emerging technologies

Indian businesses are seeing technology disruptors as opportunities, with 69% of Indian executives seeing Generative AI as an opportunity (against the 60% globally).  The same is reflected in PwC’s 2024 Global Digital Trust Insights- India edition report (90% of Indian respondents reported GenAI will help their organisation develop new lines of business over the next 3 years). Apart from Gen AI, 60% Indian respondents view both quantum computing and enterprise blockchain as an opportunity. Globally, the outlook is similar with figures of 53% and 52% respectively. The survey also revealed how organisations are taking the help of emerging technologies such as GenAI for risk management, with 48% of Indian enterprises having deployed AI and machine learning for automated risk assessment and response to a large extent. This is slightly lower than the global response of 50%.

Investing in building resilience is imperative

To  leverage the positives brought in by risks and disruptions, 88% of Indian organisations are actively investing in building resilience in their ecosystem over the last 12 months. Globally, 77% of the businesses are investing in the same. In fact, 64% of Indian organisations have an enterprise-wide technology strategy and roadmap, which includes investment in technology, specifically to drive resilience and/ or manage risk. This is 11% higher than the global average of 53%. Similarly, 58% of Indian enterprises have established a resilience team, comprising members from functions like business continuity, cyber, crisis management and risk management to swiftly respond to risk events as they occur. Globally, the figure stands at 51%.

‘Risk Pioneers’ are leading the way

‘Risk Pioneers’, a top performing group of organisations – constituting 5% of the global survey respondents and spread across all industries – are blazing a trail in reframing risk as a value creation opportunity. They are overwhelmingly (73% v 53% of those surveyed) likely to have an enterprise-wide technology strategy and roadmap; are 1.8 times more likely to say they are “very confident” in balancing growth and managing risk; 1.8 times more likely to see GenAI as fully an opportunity than risk; and are 1.6 times more likely to proactively take risk to create opportunities versus prioritising safe or low risk strategies. They are also significantly more likely to be upskilling internal teams on risk-related capabilities and express greater alignment with their CEO/board on levels of risk appetite (32% matching that of their CEO and board, compared to 22% of overall respondents).

About the survey

The 2023 Global Risk Survey - India highlights aims to capture the views on the top risks organisations face across industries in 2023.  It focuses on the evolving risk landscape and how approaches to managing risk can differ from value protection vs value creation and human-led vs tech-powered mindset.

The final results of the survey are based on 3,910 survey responses from Business and Risk Management leaders (CEO, board, risk management, operations, technology, finance, audit) across 67 territories providing their views on the status and direction of risk in their organisation. 163 Indian organisations were a part of this survey.

Survey responses are from a range of industry sectors and organisation sizes, with over 33% of Indian respondents being executives in large companies with annual revenues of over $5 billion. 62% of the Indian sample comprises C-suite executives.

Indian respondents operate in a range of industries: financial services (27%), industrial manufacturing and automotive ( 21%), retail and consumer markets (13%), energy, utilities, and resources (6%), technology, media and telecommunications (23%), health (9%), and government and public services (1%). 

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Ruchi Mann

Ruchi Mann

Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, PwC India

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