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How to sell in International Markets: Tips from Founders and Experts.

Understanding the complexities of International Trade can be overwhelming when you are new to it ,but lucrative if you can get it right!
In a recent masterclass on ‘International Trade,’ Emmie Faust and a team of experts explored what founders should know about International Trade as well as sources of support and funding.
You can view the full masterclass here.
(if you’re not already a member, join Female Founders Rise for free here).

The Trade Team at Lloyds Bank: Facilitating Global Transactions & Services

Sarah Dickinson, works at Lloyds Bank as part of the Trade Team helping out small businesses all over the country with the tricky parts of International Trade.

The trade team at Lloyds can assist founders in the following ways:
Specialised Trading Plans: Helping founders create trading plans using specialised tools.
Financial Collaboration: Collaborating closely with founders to address their financial and planning needs. They have partnered with organisations like Female Founder Finance to provide access to a wide range of solution providers and finance experts.
Trade Finance Services: Assisting founders with diverse trade finance services.
Working Capital Solutions: Solutions to protect cashflow when purchasing assets from overseas (or domestically) , such as the export insurance policy. For founders, this can provide a simpler route to international trade.

International Trade Tool ( Factsheet).

The Lloyds Bank’s International Trade Portal is a tool that helps businesses better understand importing and exporting. It’s a one-stop-shop for market research, customer and supplier discovery, understanding business trends, and navigating the complexities of international trade. The service is free and available to founders even those that are not clients of Lloyds.
For a demonstration on how to use the tool please see 44:07 on the masterclass recording.

The Benefits of Selling Internationally.

Joe Archer, Export Finance Manager at UK Export Finance, highlighted the advantages of selling internationally, emphasising that businesses engaged in exporting tend to be more resilient, productive, and experience higher growth potential.

She acknowledged the challenges inherent in international trade, such as :
– financial risks
– working capital impact
– credit risk
– currency risk

To address these challenges, UK Export Finance collaborates with the UK government to provide solutions, including:
guarantees for working capital
– credit insurance
– assistance with various financial instruments

Joe Archer provides a free service to help growing businesses in Bedfordshire access finance to support their international trade endeavours .

Please click here for the list of Export finance managers who are regional representatives of UKEF.

Navigating the Complexities of International Trade

Clare Booth from the Department of Business and Trade in the Midlands, emphasised the importance of engaging with International Trade advisors for tailored assistance in export planning.

She suggested joining Export Academy, which offers free training including modules for both novice and experienced exporters.

To get started, she recommends looking on the Department for Business and Trade’s website. She said it’s important to conduct market research on the new markets you’re trying to enter and apply this insight to your product. Attending industry events can also help you to make contacts and gain knowledge of the market and its trends.

Pia Harpur, Founder of Studio Pia: Challenges and Solutions

Pia Harpur, the founder of Studio Pia, explained the challenges when entering international trading.
She initially sought advice from the Department of International Trade and the Department of Business and Trade. She applied for grants through UK Tradeshow Programme to participate in international trade shows in Paris and New York through the UK Fashion and Textile Association. These grants were a big help in helping Pia to grow her business internationally. At the moment over 50% of her Direct to Consumer Business comes from US.

Read more about the grants here: UK Tradeshow Programme

Further discussions

Clare recommended connecting with Export champions, people with experience of exporting who are willing to share this expertise with businesses starting out in export.

When setting retail prices it’s important to understand all costs associated with international trade. There can be a lack of awareness about this among early-stage entrepreneurs and the impact it can have on pricing strategies. Proactive measures, such as engaging with experts and using available resources like the export insurance policy can protect against uncertainties.

Additional Tips for Founders

– LinkedIn can be a great tool for networking with foreign companies and banks. Focus on those who can bring expertise and contacts into your business to help you navigate the complexities of international trade.

– Business communities can help you grow your network and learn from others. Sign up to Female Founders Rise and Export Academy.