The 2009 edition of IBM's Global Location Trends report is prepared by Plant Location International (PLI), the global center of excellence in IBM Global Business Services for advising companies on their global location strategies and economic development organizations on improving their strategies to attract such companies. Some of the key findings from this year's report are:
• The economic recession clearly affected global investment activity: a decline of 25% in jobs created through foreign investment.
• Various "hot-spots" among the emerging markets were severely affected, as companies postponed or cancelled larger, risk bearing projects.
• Stable, mature markets performed relatively better than the emerging markets, still attracting the smaller, consumer-oriented projects, and being a safe choice for many consolidation projects (although the majority of these also showed overall decreases).
• The widening of global investment continued. Despite the overall decrease in total investment, companies extended their search for markets, talents, and cost efficiency to new corners of the world. In particular, Africa continues to increase its share of global investment.
• Preliminary indications for 2009 show that the above trends continue up until recently. Q3 and Q4 however clearly show signals of increasing activity. This is unlikely to lead shortly to similar numbers of new jobs as in recent record years, but shows that companies are beginning to change their focus to growth strategies again.