With China and other Far East countries growing into strong business hubs, any serious entrepreneur must be thinking of expanding his business into that prime region. The European Union, on the other hand, has been a strong economic bloc since time immemorial and is now stronger than it has ever been. Going global is indeed a viable idea for you.
But expanding the business into new markets has never been easy. You will have new trade laws to abide by, new languages to learn, and new client needs to satisfy. That is why you need a good, reliable business partner who understands all the dynamics of the local trade within the borders of the country you choose to expand to.
A good example of a company that has benefited from engaging international business partners is Coca Cola. The company now makes billions of dollars in annual profits from its non-USA markets. The company, for example, partnered with Mexico’s Topo Chico- a renowned sparkling water brand- to revolutionize the Mexican beverage sector. That simple move has helped Coca Cola dismantle many growth obstacles in America’s southern neighbor.
A good international expansion partner has these, among other benefits:
1. You are able to tap into their wealth of experience and knowledge
Every country has a different set of laws. Every client base has a unique set of needs and preferences. Every workforce comes with its unique set of expectations and expertise. That is to say that even if you have created a strong team back home, even if you have mastered all the needs of your customers, that experience may be obsolete when you will be setting shop abroad. It most likely will not be applicable to the unique set of new challenges you will encounter overseas.
How do you navigate around this? Well, by tapping into the wealth of experience that your local partners have in the market. Think of that partner as an experienced tour guide helping you through unknown territory.
2. Financial and investment assistance
You can partner with a bank, an export credit agency, or an individual trade broker when expanding your business. If you have been partnering with an international bank when raising capital and making investments back home, why not continue with the trend even when you expand overseas? Maybe the bank has banking allies in your target market or maybe they have a branch there. That means that the bank knows something about the market that could greatly benefit your venture if you partnered with them.
Besides, big financial investments always know about current governmental and non-governmental programs- before everybody else- and that would help you with your entry market strategies. You can also get important endorsements from your financial partner whenever you wish to apply for loans.
3. Helps you to set up a global legal and HR infrastructure.
A good global partner helps you to hire employees and manage their affairs in accordance with the law. That is what a professional employer organization (PEO) do. “A PEO can have the knowledge of employment laws in hundreds of countries so when you partner with one, you are assured of a flawless transition into the global arena,” said New Horizons Global Partners, a known PEO in Asia.
A PEO will handle most of your legal and tax obligations, enabling you to handle the core aspects of your business without any divided attention. Although relatively new, professional employer organizations have proved to be of paramount importance.
4. Social influencing
Local digital influencers are key to your overseas expansion, particularly with the massive growth of different social platforms. Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram have all morphed into gigantic marketing channels. A local social influencer may not have as huge a following as the global celebrities you see campaigning for different services and products online, but they at least have most of the people you target as future customers.
Think of a local Chinese entertainer who performs at concerts across the country and commands a couple of million followers on social media. That person understands exactly what his followers need, how to get it to them, and how best to advertise your products to them. You cannot afford not to tap into this amazing opportunity. Partner with a local influencer and use his followership as your Launchpad to success within his area of influence.