Despite the uncertainty caused by the UK’s historic decision to leave the EU earlier this year, UK businesses need not shy away from increasing their exposure to the global economy. There are a wealth of opportunities for those looking to further trade and growth through international markets and those who do so and become mini-multinationals tend to see the benefits of diversification as well as increased revenues.

Nevertheless, this can’t happen overnight. Getting a business export ready requires a substantial amount of preparation and ore-organisation of internal processes. It can even take time and some initial sacrifice as Will Butler Adams, CEO of Brompton Bicycles explains:

“We first started exporting 12 years ago, back when we couldn’t even make enough bikes for the domestic market. We didn’t like the idea we were so reliant on one country, so we actually upset quite a lot of our UK customers back then, who we couldn’t supply because we were opening up new markets. But it paid off because by the time we needed those sales, those export markets had matured.”

But what should these plans entail? How is an SME that has never exported before to know what the most appropriate entry points are into new markets? And how does an SME that that has only exported to the EU begin to look further afield? The hows and whys can certainly seem daunting.

This is why at THINK GLOBAL – a day conference held in London on 11th October – World First are bringing together the expertise of leading businesses who have successfully unlocked the potential presented by going global.

By reflecting on their own experiences, a panel will specifically address how businesses should set themselves up to be export ready in order to give attendees the confidence and know how to flourish internationally. The expert speakers (see below) will discuss the first steps businesses should take when trading internationally, how to prepare your business for export, the biggest challenges faced by SMEs and how to overcome these, amongst other topics related to how businesses can better engage in international trade.

As a driver of the Government’s Digital Export Strategy, Neil Tunbridge, Co-Founder and Director at PIVOT eCommerce, will provide insight on how digital internationalisation can open up new sales and revenue channels that can be managed using an existing infrastructure once all the right logistics are in place.

Darko Atijas, Vice President at Temando, will explain how businesses should leverage technology to connect to consumers everywhere and accelerate exports once they have the right knowledge of rates and services.

Having moved from England to Germany, Jesse Wragg, Business Developer at Intercultural Elements, has experienced cross-border trade from both sides and knows the challenges that SMEs face when exporting and what can be achieved when unlocking the rest of the world.

Also on the panel is Tobi Schneidler, Owner and CEO of Bouncepad, who has grown his business since 2010 to cover 50 countries worldwide and operating in several different languages.

Fundamentally, for those that can get it right, the rewards can be great. Alongside innovation, the ability to export is likely to be a defining characteristic of successful businesses in the post-Brexit era.  I sincerely hope for those that attend this particular panel session will provide valuable information and guidance on how to ensure their business has a plan and is export ready.