The surest route to expand your market is to export. The potential is endless. The challenge, of course, is knowing where, what and how to export. Our guide to export investment helps to answer those questions, as well as providing links to the wealth of professional advice and resources available from industry experts. With the right guidance, there is nothing stopping you from discovering your unique path to export investment.

A Route To Growth

By tapping into new markets, exporting can be a profitable and efficient way of expanding. As research has shown, exporting companies tend to be more profitable than their non-exporting counterparts. By spreading risk, reducing dependence on the local market, exposing your company to new ideas, management practices and marketing techniques, and by improving innovation, exporting can increase profit and improve competitiveness. Exporting could bring the boost your business needs for growth and endurance in a challenging economy.

Plan to Suceed

Of course, there are important risks and costs to consider. In order to make the right decisions for your company, research, planning and developing your export knowledge is essential.

If you’re thinking of exporting, this checklist is a good place to start:

Assess export potential Do you have enough margin to absorb the extra costs?
Would you need to modify your products to fit in with your target market?
Weigh the potential negatives Taking your eye off the market
Getting paid by overseas customers can be difficult
You may have to travel abroad a lot or spend months negotiating
Is your company ready to export? You will need:
• Someone who speaks languages to represent you abroad
• Financial reserves
• Extra administrative capacity
• Knowledge of foreign regulations, standards and cultural preferences
• Solid domestic sales and strong business model- exporting won’t fix a broken business
Identify target markets Develop a list of markets and create a structured search outline
Gather information online, but dig deeper than top-line facts and figures
Find and talk to real people in-market
Seek out practical, paid for advice at market specific workshops and seminars
Develop direct contacts with potential buyers

Develop an export strategy A sound export strategy is a must in dealing with bankers, financial advisors and government agencies
Make sure your export strategy is integrated with your overall domestic business plan
Think about:
• Reducing seasonal demand swings
• Reducing fixed costs
• Maximising production capacity
• Assessing new technology
• Align domestic and international marketing
• Get your strategy externally reviewed

• Align domestic and international marketing
• Get your strategy externally reviewed

Market route/ market entry Finding the right route to market can be complex, difficult and obviously crucial. Agent, distributor, licence or franchise? Direct sales to retail, direct B2B, joint venture, subsidiary or via UK contacts?
This is an area in which experienced professional advice is vital.

The best place to start is probably the Overseas Market Induction Service, operated by UK Trade and Investment (part of the UK Government). For more information about this service visit http://www.ukti.gov.uk. Alternatively you can email the department of Business, Enterprise, Technology and Science trade team on business@wales.gsi.gov.uk for further information about the support available in Wales.

Risks and legal Alongside the extra benefits of exporting come extra or exacerbated risks that you will need to consider. For instance with non payment; brand protection; political instability; exchange rate fluctuations; super-inflation and so on.
On patents, trademarks, designs and copyright, the Intellectual Property Office can be a useful resource.

Further info:

Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs
British Chamber of Commerce
South Wales Chamber of Commerce
Institute of Export
Access the online UK Trade Tariff on the Businesslink.gov.uk website
Video: export documentation and getting paperwork right