Open to Export Launches for Small Businesses
UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) in partnership with hibu, (formerly known as Yell Group) has launched the latest initiative to get Brtiain trading.
Open to Export is a new online community-driven platform for SMEs looking for support in exporting from the UK.
Small businesses can register to use the service free of charge and connect with their peers and other key contributors in the community.
Some answers to export questions are provided by UKTI officers who are based abroad, in UK Embassies and also High Comissions. These overseas officers have expert knowledge of the territories in which they are based and are an invaluable source of information for small businesses wishing to operate in those areas.
According to Barclays, around 29% of small and medium-sized businesses that export see business growth add to their bottom line within just six months of their entry into overseas markets. Over half of SMEs who have exported believed that the rate of growth exceeded their expectations (See Small Businesses Export to Expand)
As well as providing advice on exporting, the Open to Export platform also lists specific openings for UK small businesses – There is currently a wide diversity of countries and projects listed with opportunities for British firms to export to France (Financial & resource planning software), the USA (Pre-design servces for a museum), the Democratic Republic of Congo (Supply & installation of voice recoring system & spare parts) and Vietnam (Requiring optical fibre ground wires and accessories for a transmission line project).
Lord Green of Hurstpierpoint, Minister of State for Trade and Investment, said of the Open to Export launch:
“Half of the UK’s exports, by value, already come from SMEs. Open to Export will provide practical assistance, advice and support to other businesses looking to make that crucial first step to sell into foreign markets.”
UKTI have produced a number of business advice articles which can be seen on the is4profit site in the exporting section.