Midlands companies in the fashion, giftware and creative sectors that are looking to export for the first time are being invited to join a Midlands Engine visit to the Czech Republic. Organised by the Department for International Trade (DIT) Midlands team, the three-day Export Insight Visit (EIV) visit to Prague is specifically designed to help consumer sector businesses in the Midlands Engine region that have little or no experience of overseas trade.

It takes place between March 13 and 16 and promises to provide a unique opportunity for companies to explore their potential for export sales, make business contacts and discover the support that is available from DIT and its delivery partners in the UK and overseas.

Delegates will enjoy a packed programme, which will include a chance to exhibit to local buyers, join a buyer reception at the British Embassy, take part in roundtable discussions on key export topics and learn how to do business effectively in the Czech Republic.

Andy Smith, international relationships manager at DIT West Midlands, said:

“This is a great opportunity for ambitious Midlands-based companies to test the waters in the Czech Republic and get an invaluable insight into the market, and to discover the kind of support that is available. Meeting potential buyers and retailers in the market is essential and this trip could well be the catalyst they need to start exporting. Looking at the great.gov.uk site, there are dozens opportunities right now in the Czech Republic across the consumer sector – from luxury foods to men’s grooming products – as buyers there seek British goods for their markets. It means it is the ideal time for companies to explore export trade possibilities further.”

Jacqueline Champion, of Shrewsbury-based confectioner Champion & Reeve, said would-be exporters would benefit hugely from participating in export insight visits. She took part in a visit to Latvia in December 2015 to explore the opportunities in the Baltic markets for her premium-quality nougat, butterscotch and toffee.

“It is critical for any new exporter to visit the market and establish if their product is right and at the correct price point,” she said. “Visiting Latvia taught us a great deal about the confectionery market over there and we made some very good connections.”

To be eligible for the EIV, companies must be Midlands based and operate within the consumer sector; be new exporters or have not proactively exported their goods / services within the last 12 months; and have experience of selling their goods / services within the domestic market.

The cost of the trip is £200 per delegate, which includes flights, accommodation with breakfast, in-market travel and group meals. For more information and to register your interest in joining this EIV please visit: www.eivczechrepublic.eventbrite.co.uk

The EIV is just one aspect of a whole package of support that DIT offers businesses in the Midlands. Any company interested in breaking into overseas markets, and taking advantage of the global appetite for UK goods and services, should visit the new online trade hub, great.gov.uk, part of the Government’s Exporting is GREAT initiative.

great.gov.uk is a single digital destination for trade and investment, bringing together and connecting UK businesses, international buyers and international investors. Whether businesses are new, occasional or frequent exporters, they will be able to take advantage of the new suite of tools and exclusive deals on fees or commissions with some of world’s leading online marketplaces.