Why SME’s should start expanding their global horizons

Question – when is the most opportune time for SME’s to consider entering new markets overseas? Answer – now!

Many UK firms have already jumped on the bandwagon and, according to a recent article in Director magazine, UK international trade was up 12% overall and by 31% to emerging economies in the first four months of 2010. Businesses are gradually recognising the huge growth potential to be found in trading overseas.

On a national scale, exporting can generate an often much needed boost for a country’s economy. Many SME’s, struggling to survive in the depressed UK market, have used international trade as an impetus for growing their customer base and turnover, and have discovered that it can act as a driver for innovation as they become exposed to new customer needs and foreign competitors’ products and services.

What makes this a particularly good time for companies to expand overseas? A flat and slowly recovering domestic market, a favourable exchange rate that makes goods and services from the UK currently very cost-competitive, coupled with low-cost technology that enables international trade are all motivating factors according to Director magazine.

Today cloud computing and converged communications capabilities facilitate easy accessibility by a worldwide audience, which wasn’t the case ten years ago. As a result, many small businesses in this digital age become exporters almost “by accident”, as the products and services they offer online are made visible globally. Many are also pleasantly surprised to find that overseas economies are often more welcoming to small firms than the UK; these countries are looking for companies that are not only exporters of goods but also of knowledge, skills and manpower.

Which countries are these? HSBC bank reported that between 2000 and 2009 UK trade activity with China had risen by 260%, with India by 45% and with the United Arab Emirates by 130% but, surprisingly, the UK’s fastest growing partners last year were Chile, Senegal and Nigeria.

Obviously there are challenges associated with operating in any overseas market and such things as cultural differences, political stability, inflation and infrastructure provisions need to be taken into consideration. Opportunities are huge, however, and having a partner with an international mindset, experience and connections can alleviate many of these concerns – MA Consulting and its network of partners can provide the assistance you need. Contact us today at +441656 766363 or visit our website http://www.maconsultinginternational.com. Start looking to expand your horizons now in order to enhance your competitive edge and ensure your future prosperity.

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