Leeds Business School

Opportunities for Internationalisation of British SMEs

Small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) can benefit greatly from internationalisation, as illustrated in a new report prepared by Dr Martina Topić. The research, which is funded by the EU as part of the Interreg COMPETE IN project, highlights opportunities abroad to show how businesses can internationalise, increase their profits, and engage with the global community.

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Martina said that “COMPETE IN has shown that countries offer incentives, support and advice for companies to do business with them.”

“With the upcoming Brexit negotiations, this is something for UK businesses to look at, but even if the UK never leaves the EU this would still be useful as there are countries that are trying to attract foreign investors.”

“These countries are so eager to do so that they offer financial incentives and all sorts of help. It needs to be emphasised that these countries are very open to foreign capital and immigration, so this would be a positive working environment for British SMEs”.

According to the research, countries such as Mexico, Canada and Brazil offer initiatives to encourage internationalisation of SMEs. Most of these initiatives focus on creating resources for potential entrepreneurs, offering mentorship and business advice, organising business seminars and workshops, conducting market analysis and intelligence gathering, offering start-up acceleration programmes, international business expansion programmes, and participating in trade missions.

COMPETE IN project partners, as well as British SMEs are learning from these practices by taking their business overseas. The findings of the report were presented at Innovation Network Conference organized by Leeds Beckett University in September. It is hoped that businesses in the north will find the research particularly useful as it can be accessed through Leeds Beckett and its local business centres. The report will also be disseminated in the university so the findings can be used for teaching, especially among Business and Management courses where students can learn a lot about entrepreneurship and potential opportunities should they seek to start a business upon graduation.

This post was drafted by Jess Hodgson, a second year student on the BA (Hons) Public Relations with Journalism course at Leeds Beckett University. 

Dr Martina Topic

Reader / Leeds Business School

Dr Martina Topić is a behavioural sociologist and communications scholar studying wicked problems of social inequity historically and at present, she is a Reader at Leeds Business School.

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