A translation company is one of eight North West companies taking part in a pioneering new trade initiative to get more companies exporting into the emerging economies of East Africa, to take advantage of over £50 million of available contract opportunities.
Dina Railean, the MD of Express Language Solutions is part of a new breed of trailblazing entrepreneurs who are ready to boldly go to exotic new markets, where others are reluctant to tread.
Dina explains “the best way to recession proof your business is to export to markets which are growing, and want British know-how and expertise. East Africa, which is a part of the Commonwealth, is keen to do business with UK companies and presents a not-to-be-missed opportunity”.
The government is pinning its hopes on an export-lead recovery to move the UK out of recession and is hoping that more British businesses will follow trailblazers like Dina. However, a recent study by the London Chambers of Commerce showed that almost two thirds of the capital’s companies do not sell goods or services overseas and only a fraction are considering taking the plunge despite favourable exchange rates.
Express Language Solutions will be taking part in a 10 month programme called LeaderSet, which brings together complimentary companies in the education & training sector to faciliatate consortium working and collaborative innovation. In addition, the LeaderSet group of companies will work in partnership with a large NW college, which specialises in technical & vocational education in the emerging markets of Africa, Russia & South East Asia. Further LeaderSets are being planned for the manufacturing & environmental services sectors.
LeaderSet is the brainchild of leadership development specialist LeaderGen Ltd, who are based in Old Trafford, Manchester. LeaderSet was developed from a successful pilot in Kenya funded by the Foreign & Commonwealth Office. This mobilised a wide network of business and political leaders and decision makers, all alumni of the UK’s “Chevening Scholarship” programme, to generate over £20 million of trade flows between the UK and Kenya in a twelve month period.
Founded by serial entrepreneur Marilyn Comrie OBE, Leadergen is working in partnership with UK Trade & Investment by sourcing business opportunities and orders for UK SMEs who have completed the Passport To Export programme. This aims to shorten and simplify the process of securing new export business, minimise potential problems and remove the “fear factor” which inhibits some companies from taking the export route.
Said Marilyn “It is crucial that we increase dramatically the number of companies going abroad to seek business. LeaderSet takes the fear out of exporting by sourcing contract opportunities and handholding groups of companies through the exporting process, until they are confident to do it alone.”
Marilyn, a former BBC TV series producer and seasoned Africa development specialist says “Cuts in government contracts and the recession are forcing many UK businesses to leave behind the comfort of the familiar, and rediscover their mercantile spirit by venturing to countries in developing and emerging economies to seek out export opportunities that will help their businesses thrive and grow.”
Dina added: “ELS is already heavily involved in assisting UK companies export worldwide and programmes such as LeaderSet only help to create business prospects in new markets such as East Africa. We are very excited about the opportunity to boost our presence in foreign markets and we would encourage others to follow suit”.
UK Trade & Investment in the North West will be staging a free Doing Business in East Africa seminar in Manchester on 12 September at Warren Bruce Court, Warren Bruce Road, Trafford Park, Manchester 17. Interested companies should contact James Veevers on 0161 875 2334.