Executive Summary

Companies are like living organisms. They are born, they grow, they shrink, they die, sometimes they go to sleep for a while, sometimes they revive: some split in two and some have children. Not for nothing have their twists and turns been likened to a process of ‘creative destruction’. What matters is that in this sometimes chaotic process the net effect is that they help create sustainable employment, wealth and growth. It turns out that how they do so is deeply influenced by the environment that surrounds them and those environments, or business cultures, tend to be different in different regions of the world. Despite those differences, there is a general consensus that in the 21st Century global economy, it is a very good thing to have a stream of new companies, with new ideas and new products and services, coming into existence. That, it is believed, is beneficial for the wider economy.

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