West Midlands companies with ambitions of going global or that want to expand their international reach are invited to a series of events during Export Week this November. Tickets are already being snapped up for the UK Trade and Investment (UKTI) Export Week events, which run from November  9 to 13 and aim to offer advice on how to build contacts in new markets and boost export sales.

The week will include events on key overseas markets and sectors, digital workshops, and opportunities for women-led businesses and young entrepreneurs who want to spread their wings into the international market.

ExploreExport – Export Week’s flagship event – is set to be the biggest and most high profile yet, including interactive seminars, a drop-in lounge and the chance to meet with more than 60 commercial officers.

Christine Hamilton, Acting UKTI West Midlands Regional Director, said:

“Export Week gives businesses across the region the opportunity to really think about how they can start to access the international market or how they can grow their existing opportunities, and find out about how we can support them in their ambitions.

“This dedicated calendar of events brings together UKTI experts from across the globe, companies with whom we have worked successfully to achieve export success and those who want to find the right market, under one roof. It’s the ideal time to access advice and be inspired by the successes we have helped to garner.”

Over the past three years, 915 businesses in Birmingham and the Black Country have received help and support from UKTI, and won a reported £1.3 billion in overseas sales. This number is expected to grow further during Export Week.

Tom Farmer, Sales Director at Kings Norton-based Biocare Ltd, which develops nutritional supplements, credits attending Explore Export last year with giving the company the impetus it needed to inform its export strategy.

He said:

“This event enabled us to establish direct contact with UK representatives in market who were able to add tangible value to our export effort. The event is of huge value to those either considering or already exporting.”

Rob Bosson, OEM and sales export engineer at Dudley-based Water Fit, a manufacturer of gunmetal fittings and water meter manifolds to the water industry, attended ExploreExport last year and met High Commission officers from Guyana and Jamaica.

This led to the company participating in UKTI’s overseas market introduction service (OMIS), which helps businesses to identify opportunities in markets and to set up meetings with potential partners or agents, and then a visit to Trinidad and Guyana, where meetings had been arranged on its behalf by UKTI.

He added:

“Since my return, we have secured an initial order with a major manufacturer in Trinidad and are confident of receiving our second and third order. We are confident that we can secure a significant amount of business within the next 12 months, thanks to the support received from the UKTI team overseas and my International Trade Adviser here in the UK.”

For more information about all the events running during Export Week, visit http://www.exportweek.ukti.gov.uk/full/

Events for Export Week:

Tuesday, 10 November


Selling Education Equipment Overseas. Molineux Stadium, Wolverhampton


Explore international markets for education supplies and find out how UKTI can support your global ambitions. Gain advice from the British Educational Suppliers Association (BESA), international trade specialists and from local companies that have already found export success. A Q&A with UK Export Finance and Aid Funded Business will answer some key questions, while there will be roundtable discussions on topics such as intellectual property, language and culture and how to start winning business in Asia. To book, log on to:

Book your place: http://selling-education-equipment-overseas.eventbrite.co.uk

Financing Exports – When the Computer says No. Trade & Export Finance, Aston Cross Business Village, Rocky Lane, Aston, Birmingham.

Receive the financial tools that you need to fund your exports. Topics will include using alternative forms of finance to fund orders, financing against letters of credit and how to create a toolbox of solutions. There will also be a series of case studies highlighting previous success stories, plus opportunities for question and answers.

Book your place: http://tinyurl.com/q2ps2ca

Opportunities in Indonesia and Vietnam. Rutland House, Edmund St, Birmingham

Organised by The British Plastics Federation, this seminar is for businesses who want to do business in Indonesia and Vietnam or who are already trading there but would like to meet market experts.

Book your place: http://bit.ly/IndonesiaAndVietam

Wednesday, November 11


Doing Business with Canada. Wragge Lawrence Graham & Co, Two SnowHill, Birmingham

The British American Business Council (BABC) will host an interactive seminar on opportunities for UK exporters and guidance on specific sectors. An expert panel, including a representative from the High Commission of Canada, will answer questions and there will be a chance to network.

To book a place, visit: http://tinyurl.com/oodf4hg

Start-up Global. Aston University, Birmingham

Designed for students with innovative business ideas and recent graduates with international ambitions, this event will provide attendees with the chance to pick up tips from young entrepreneurs who have built successful overseas sales. Book tickets by visiting: https://startupglobalevent.eventbrite.co.uk

Grow your business – think international (4th exporting event for women-led businesses). Birmingham Council House.

This event, in partnership with RBS, aims to motivate and inspire women who lead businesses to look beyond the UK. There will be a chance to hear from successful female entrepreneurs that have built up their own brand, to take part in a Q&A session, and to participate in taster sessions on key topics such as how to improve your website, how to get your goods to market, and ways to navigate differences in language and culture. 

Book your place: http://grow-your-business-think-international.eventbrite.co.uk

Thursday, November 12


Explore Export. The Vox, Birmingham

Join the largest export event in the West Midlands and expand your business on a global scale. Commercial officers from more than 60 countries will be on hand to help companies develop their international trade strategy. To book a place, visit: http://www.exploreexport.ukti.gov.uk/Birmingham.aspx

Friday, November 13


Digital Bootcamp. Centre of Refurbishment Excellence, Stoke-on-Trent

A panel of expert speakers, including a UKTI digital trade adviser, will advise on topics such as email marketing strategy, video and infographics and the importance of the web on mobile. For details and to book, visit: http://digital-bootcamp-2015.eventbrite.co.uk

Exporting Innovation. The University of Warwick

A joint event between Warwick Business School and UKTI, Professor Stephen Roper, Enterprise Research Centre Director, will share research on mid-market exporting, and show how mid-sized businesses can use these outcomes to directly benefit your bottom line

Steve Cunnane will outline how UKTI supports mid-sized businesses to export through the UKTI MSB programme.

This is a free event but registration is required for catering purposes and to guarantee your place.

Book your place: http://tinyurl.com/oufbly3