There are two charts in this analysis of emerging market opportunities written by John Derrick, Director of Research at US Global Investors. One of them, the first one, predicts the growth rates of emerging and developed markets. It reinforces what most already know. But Mr. Derrick’s analysis of why these returns are apt to continue being strong for emerging markets is worth reading.
It is the second chart that brings something really new to the discussion. I urge you to take a look. Writes Mr. Derrick: This second chart, also from Goldman Sachs, compares the operating margins in developed and emerging markets for the companies in Europe’s Dow Jones Stoxx 600 Index. The analysis going back to the early 1990s found that the emerging-market operations of these companies have consistently yielded higher margins, and oftentimes the spreads have been significant.
It comes down to this. US market growth is flat. In the UK it is a negative number. How long this continues is anyone’s guess. But few, if any, seem to doubt that the real growth is in the emerging markets where, it turns out, operating margins can be better. And nobody is disputing the widespread belief that more and more middle class consumers are being produced in these developing nations. This article says there are 230 million of them all of a sudden in India alone. Shouldn’t you be there? The answer seems obvious.
Not so obvious to many is that getting product into these countries won’t be as one-sided as it used to be. We can’t just ship things over in a box and get it sold. Today, these products have to comply with international labeling and product marking standards, with GS1 being the chief driver of this. But you can label up fairly quickly and easily and be in business where people have money to spend, where growth is on the increase, and margins can be better.