Government supporting SME exporting with local partners

Support for SME’s who consider exporting to other countries is plentiful but research revealed owners prefer getting on a flight and discovering the best local partners for themselves.

Even in the face of uncertainty of which the UK’s future trading relationship with the EU hangs in the balance. According to figures by the Office for National Statistics (OFS), the majority of SME’s exports rose 10 per cent, its highest level ever last year.

This figure is a considerable rise and because of it, the Government is holding its hopes high for SME’s hitting the target to increase the part of GDP earned through exporting from 30pc to 35pc.

The Government hopes the Department of International Trade (DIT) will be supervising SMEs though a challenging decisions and factors that they must make and take in to consideration. These include:

  • What countries to target.
  • Whether to go direct or with a distributor.
  • Taxes and tariffs that may apply.
  • Insurance costs.

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) group counselled SMEs on the benefits from a wide range of support when looking to attract customers from overseas. They were mostly urged to talk to their local (BCC) to get feedback from fellow business colleagues and the Institute of Export, which is a useful resource for tips from experts in overseas trade.

Reaching out for Government advice and contact introductions has certainly worked well in helping Mark Bembridge, CEO of AI advertising technology firm, Smartology, open a New York office earlier this year.

The main advice he gave to SMEs thinking of exporting overseas was to find certified programmes such as the international London Mayor’s International Business Programme (IBP) and the Department for International Trade (DIT).

Mr. Bembridge, said: “Government networking events have put us in front of exactly the people we need to grow our user base internationally.

“In last year’s New York trip the DIT lined us up with some top contacts and they also arranged for us to speak to business experts about how to go about setting up an American company.

“If you find these guys yourself, you’re never too sure if you’re getting the best advice, but we know we could trust the people we were put on to by the DIT.”