Data from the Annual Business Inquiry shows that the number of active businesses in Cape Verde in 2013 dropped 1.4% in comparison to 2012, when the fourth Business Census took place. The figures also indicate that the number of people working in these businesses fell 0.85%, while the total business volume increased some 0.71% in nominal terms.
Businesses without an organized accounting structure saw negative variation in the three indicators analyzed: effective active businesses, with 186 fewer businesses (down 2.04%), a total reduction of 646 personnel (down 5.59%) and business volume down 833,212,000 escudos in comparison to 2012 (down 8.42%). However, the negative variation indicated in the business volume indicator for businesses without an organized accounting structure was nullified by the positive variation seen in businesses with organized accounting, which saw their businesses volume increase 0.71%.
Businesses with organized accounting accounted for 35% of total businesses active in Cape Verde, as opposed to 65% without. Businesses with organized accounting accounted for 78% of all employees, as opposed to 22% for those without. “The number of employees increased 0.53% in businesses with an organized accounting structure, while those without an organized accounting structure saw a 5.49% drop in comparison to the year before,” reads the Inquiry.
The study carried out by the INE shows that those businesses with organized accounting accounted for 96% of total business volume (a percentage equal to that seen in 2012), as opposed to 4% for those without. In comparison to 2012, total business volume rose 1.1% in companies with organized accounting and fell 8.4% in those without, resulting in overall positive variation of 0.71%.
The inquiry also highlights a concentration of businesses and employees on the islands of Santiago, São Vicente, Sal and Boa Vista, which together account for 78% of all active businesses and 91% of all employees. On the island of Santiago, for example, employees working at businesses represented some 47% of the entire workforce, 2 percentage points below the figure seen in 2012. The inquiry also shows a concentration of businesses and business volume on these four islands, which accounted for 97% of all business volume generated in Cape Verde in 2013. The business volume generated on the island of Santiago represented 48% of the national total, 1.4 percentage points below the figure registered in 2012.
Wholesale and retail commerce activities and automobile and motorcycle repair concentrated the largest number of business units (47%), followed by hotel and restaurant activities (15%) and processing industries (10%).
Retail and wholesale commerce and automobile and motorcycle repair, hotels and restaurants, construction, processing, transportation and storage, financial services and insurance accounted for 82% of the total business volume generated by active businesses. Single-person businesses and businesses using no name other than that of their owner concentrated 75% of all active businesses, absorbing 30% of all personnel, generating 9% of total business volume. Corporations, which represented 4% of all active businesses, accounted for 32% of all personnel and generated 63% of total business volume.
Most of the country’s islands were below the national average in terms of gender equity in business leadership. On the island of Brava, 28% of all active businesses were headed by women, a figure that rose to 29% on the island of Fogo. São Vicente and Sal (both with 38%) and Boa Vista (37%) presented the highest percentages of businesses led by women.
Import and export companies, despite accounting for less than 10% of the total number of active businesses, absorbed some 34% of all personnel. In terms of business volume, they generated some 55% of all invoiced revenues. Most workers have high school degrees, a figure 8 percentage points higher than in 2012. Those with only an elementary school education represented 33% of the total, while those with professional degrees represented 8% and those with university degrees 13%.
More than half (58%) of all employees with college degrees in Cape Verdean businesses work in the municipality of Praia, followed by São Vicente (24%), Sal (9%) and Boa Vista (3%). Between 2012 and 2013, the degree of access to computers improved for businesses on all of the country’s islands, with the exception of Brava. The islands of Sal (46%), Boa Vista (42%) and São Vicente (34%) presented the best figures in the country in this particular indicator.