You are here:

British Allied Trades Federation - linking up UKTI with trade associations (TAs) to exploit specialist knowledge

28 November 2011

Access to detailed market intelligence and specialist knowledge can make the difference between success and failure for a company when entering a new market. Expert assistance can be critical in building confidence and taking some of the risk out of exploring market opportunities, especially for SMEs and first-time exporters.

The British Allied Trades Federation (formerly known as the British Jewellery, Giftware and Finishing Federation) provide precisely this in-depth information and expertise to a diverse range of companies for whom exporting is a critical part of their business model. The BATF has over 40 years of experience in helping members internationalise their businesses. Their dedicated international division has over this time developed an in-depth knowledge of the key markets for their sector, providing this invaluable information to members along with organising overseas visits and exhibitions, assisting product promotion abroad and helping link members to buyers.

Exporting is critical to businesses within the sector, as International Services Manager Mike Josypenko explains: “Exporting should be a natural progression for our businesses. Those with cutting-edge designs can significantly increase the lifecycle of a product by exporting”. More than this, internationalising provides clear opportunities for UK business: “Our businesses have a unique selling point through the UK’s strength and reputation in creating design and high quality manufacturing traditions, which means that our members’ products remain in high demand around the world.”

For their members, it is often the in-depth sectoral information that is essential in managing the transition to new markets: “Around 95% of our members are very small businesses. Because of their small size and limited resources, they need not only general information about how to export, but also highly specialised advice, so they rely upon us.” TAs are often in a unique position in offering this support: “UKTI do have very good people, but it is difficult for them to reproduce what we do here with our specialist knowledge.”

For TAs like BATF, there remain important synergies that could be exploited through closer engagement by UKTI, improving service in the most cost-effective way possible. Mr Josypenko explains: “If UKTI are to provide a better service on a limited budget, partnership with TAs is a real must. TAs could play a key role in delivering market research with the advantage that we are member-led, and so we know what our sector wants and needs. TAs can’t afford to provide this service alone, but a constructive co-operation between TAs and government could have clear benefits for UK exporters.”

Source: CBI.
For further reading view the whole publication   Winning Overseas: boosting business exporting performance

Return to news listings