Friday, November 8, 2013

News: Export Week in Rotherham

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Rotherham firms are being urged to start their own export journey as another Export Week begins.

Taking place on November 11 - 15, Export Week is a dedicated week of activity by UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) to promote exporting, with events planned in Rotherham and Sheffield to provide expert insight.

Following the success of Export Week in May, which focused on High Growth Markets, UKTI will run a series of regional events aimed at getting businesses to either start exporting or expand their export activity.

Can You Export? is taking place on the Advanced Manufacturing Park (AMP) in Rotherham on Monday November 11. The free half day workshop reviews the steps needed to consider exporting. It challenges perceptions of exporting and outlines both the benefits and potential pitfalls.

It will also provide a platform to review a business and its ability to take advantage of new export markets, identify international opportunities and to improve profit and growth through international trade.

Aiming to provide valuable first-hand insight on emerging trends and analysis, The World of Exporting event on November 15 at the Mercure St Paul's Hotel in Sheffield will include keynote addresses from international brand specialist Rita Clifton, a former strategy director for Saatchi & Saatchi, and Mark Robson, the regional director for UKTI Yorkshire and the Humber.

They will be joined by Russ Grazier, regional trade director for RBS; Andy Coticelli, a tax Partner at Deloitte; Hamish Smith, group economist at NatWest; and Jim Keir, regional manager for UK Export Finance (UKEF).

Julia Gash, the founder of BIDBI, formerly known as Bag It Don't Bin It (pictured), is urging others to follow her lead and embrace the opportunities presented by international trading.

"Trading internationally has transformed the way we do business", explained Julia, who founded BIDBI as a green and ethical manufacturing company of tote bags in Sheffield in 2008. "It has opened up markets in the US, Middle East and South East Asia, and has given us a fantastic platform for future expansion.

"It can be a little daunting taking those initial steps onto foreign shores, but my message is firmly to embrace the challenge and to work closely with the likes of UKTI to utilise the services, support and experience they offer."

Overseas sales currently account for 10 per cent of BIDBIs total business, but Julia is confident that will grow to 25 per cent within the next 12 months on the back of growing orders and partnerships in Japan, South Korea, the UAE and beyond.

The company, incorporating offshoot venture Talented Totes, specialises in producing bespoke ethical cloth bags and totes for companies, events and fashion houses. Recent contracts include a Mary Portas collection for House of Fraser and a range for The National Gallery.

Julia added: "I hope the success of BIDBI and Talented Totes inspires others to follow our lead. It’s a big wide world with plenty of amazing opportunities, and it would be fantastic to see many, many more South Yorkshire companies competing internationally, driving jobs and growth, and fulfilling their undoubted potential."

BIDBI website
Export Week website

Images: UKTI

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