Executives Cautiously Optimistic About 2023

New Orleans 500 Survey November 2022

NEW ORLEANS — In a November email survey, the Biz New Orleans editorial team asked members of the New Orleans 500 to compare their business’s 2022 revenue to 2021 numbers and to make predictions for 2023.

Notably, despite inflation, rising interest rates, workforce shortages and supply chain problems, 70% of respondents said 2022 numbers were improved year-over-year — and that same percentage expects 2023 earnings to be even better.

The responses show that, despite challenging conditions, many business owners are faring reasonably well in the post-pandemic economy, and they remain cautiously optimistic overall.

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Several survey respondents who work in the construction industry, in particular, exemplify this phenomenon.

“The industry seems busier than ever,” said Jordan Gurren Rose, co-owner of GoodWood NOLA, a New Orleans-based design and build firm specializing in custom furniture and architectural fabrication. “As long as large commercial projects stay on track, the outlook for 2023 looks promising.”

Anne Teague Landis, CEO of Landis Construction, seconds that notion, but urges caution.

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“While we expect to see revenue growth in 2023, it will be a very tricky market environment,” she said. “So while managing our growth, risk management will be more important than ever.” 

Meanwhile, both Michael Holly of Holly & Smith Architects and Gwendolyn Sanders, president of Eustis Engineering, remain hopeful while factoring a recession into their business plans.

“While we know there is a recession predicted for 2023, our sources say it will be shallow and short-lived,” said Holly. “We are prepared for 2023 and what it will present and are looking forward to 2024. Our attitude is quite positive for this region.”

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“Our 2022 revenues have only trended upward in the last few months as a result of federal projects funded by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act,” said Sanders. “However, this upward trend may only last for part of 2023. As federal spending decreases after the election and the country enters into a recession, we anticipate the later part of 2023 to be down.”

Source: November 2022 New Orleans 500 Email Survey

Here are some of the other notable responses from executives in other industries:

“Poultry costs have gone up more than the inflation rate due to shortages caused by the pandemic, and many processing plants [have converted] to deboning plants due to the high demand for boneless breast meat. This has caused tenders and bone-in chicken to be in short supply. We are moving from three chicken processing plants to five in 2023 to help mitigate the shortages and cost.” — Dan Shapiro, CEO at Krispy Krunchy Foods

“America continues to discover the joy of camping outdoors. All indicators point to the continuation in 2023.” — Terry Broussard, CEO and co-founder of Spot2Nite, an online marketplace for RV travelers

“As a nonprofit, our leadership team studies market trends and their effect on our investment income and changes in corporate philanthropic giving as a result of a younger generation rising to C-Suite leadership positions. … It’s difficult to project income/expenses with these moving targets.” — Torie Kranze, CEO of National Kidney Foundation of Louisiana

“Post-COVID recovery and hiring trends are positively affecting the employee benefits space, which represents a large portion of our client base.” — Shaun Norris, president of Hub International Gulf South, an insurance brokerage

“Empower Your Cents has won two grants that are allowing us to provide financial literacy to the New Orleans community. MSC Financial Services is expanding its services for bookkeeping, taxes and strategic coaching.” — Lori Jackson, MSC Financial Services

“We are expecting to acquire more new business, and expect current clients to add more services back that are currently on hold.” — McKenzie Lovelace, founder/CEO of FSC Interactive, a digital marketing agency

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