Concerns over relationships with EU customers and post-Brexit turmoil has raised fears among smaller companies exporting to the EU about future business and the negative impact on company profit and growth, but export specialists have warned against hasty moves. Export Footprints LLP, the Birmingham based export specialists, says it has received several enquiries from companies anxious about the effects on their business of these events. While the company says such concerns are understandable during challenging and chaotic times, its managing partner, Dr Giles Brindley, pointed out the possibilities to turn uncertainty to advantage.
“Many companies are concerned about the impact of soured relations with the EU and the negative consequences that can affect exports to European countries’’, says Dr Brindley. ‘’Some are worried about customers re-negotiating trading terms to their disadvantage and the negative consequences. Others fear that customers will simply switch to lower-cost suppliers from other countries within the EU’’.
Added Dr Brindley: “We live in a global economy, and can’t escape the impact of major world events such as the recent Brexit referendum, the effect it has on trading relationships and the UK’s position in general. Company owners have expressed concern about the effects on the sale of products to EU customers and of the anticipated change to less favourable supplier terms or agreements ending prematurely’’.
Dr Brindley says that, regardless of the economic and political climate, those taking stock of the current situation and contemplating the short to medium term should follow the same basic guidelines. These include ensuring quality product is consistently delivered on time and every time, developing solid working relationships that head-off difficulties before they get a chance to bite and ensuring exemplar post-sales service.
“Any company that is in the market for the duration needs to stay on top of changes that affect their business and take advantage of any niche or other opportunity that presents itself,’’ said Brindley. ‘’The tremendous opportunity to sell to customers outside the EU, such as in the United States or the UAE due to a healthy trading environment and excellent exchange rates means that growing internationally has just become easier’’.
Export Footprints provides fixed-cost SME/mid-cap-specific export services that help companies to make money, working specifically with businesses within: security, science and technology, engineering and manufacturing fields, helping them to grow in the UAE and Middle East.
“The interest to export is there, and we’re hearing from more and more companies who want to enter new markets, and are delighted that a cost effective route into the Middle East is now available,” says Dr Brindley.