In January 2018 I joined Dublin Chamber’s trade mission to Hong Kong – and as a result I went back to Hong Kong 5 times over the course of the year. Due to a small accident I couldn’t be on the January 2019 edition of that trade mission, but as soon as my foot has healed I will be on that Cathay Pacific direct flight again!

So here is my message to the trade mission attendees this year – as well as 10+ resources on trade missions, exporting and doing business abroad for SMEs.


I share my experience of the 2018 Dublin Chamber trade mission

to Hong Kong with 2019 attendees


Watch the video below



I have been on a trade mission for each year that I have been in business – and they have been absolutely vital in giving me the space to look at the big picture, at the global context of my company, its offering, its competitivity.

Here are 9 articles and directories I’ve compiled for your SME, to make it easier to decide whether to go international, and when.


The Irish doing business in Asia: where to start for a successful

Asian strategy


Read the post here.

Not a day goes by without yet another news item about economic opportunities in Asia – so what are we waiting for? In this post I analyse the cultural implications of doing business in Asia.

Irish businesses have a common culture with the UK and the US, which makes it very easy to do business with British and American counterparts. But when it comes to Asia, we need to be more curious about the cultural aspects. And the Irish have a unique opportunity, an Asian business connection that has been there all along…


How investors and business owners think about opportunities:



Read the post here.

In this post I take a closer look at how economists and investors look at a country for economic or business opportunities: what you should pay attention to when researching a potential business destination. I also share my thought process when thinking about opening trade links with a new country.


This SME got a six-figure grant as a direct result of a trade mission


Read the post here.

People often seem to think that trade missions are this extravagant expense that might derail the finances of their small business. Did you know that I was able to go on a highly efficient, highly focused trade mission to Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi for… 150 pounds sterling? Yes, I also had to pay for flights and accommodation (at heavy discounts, though). But when was the last time that an investment of one week and £150 had the potential to completely transform your business?


International trade after Brexit: Susan talks about amazing

opportunities at Dublin LEO


Watch the video here.

International trade can seem difficult and overwhelming – but that’s before you realise you have the full force of Irish and European agencies at your back. Free market intelligence, huge discounts and business grants, and highly motivated new staff you don’t have to train or even pay out of your own pocket: that’s what it has been like for me to do business with the help of the EU. But isn’t the EU synonymous with bureaucracy and red tape, you say? Not in my experience!


Your exports address book


Read the post here.

Speaking of which, here is my own list of the agencies, in Ireland, in the EU and in the UK, that can help your business. Have a peek at my address book.


When is the right time to start exporting?


Watch the video here.

If your business isn’t exporting yet, you might be wondering: how do you know when is the right time? The truth is that many businesses can be ready to export much sooner than they actually think. My own business started exporting four month after I created it…


How to build your network in a new city, starting from absolute zero


Read the post here.

When you’re starting from scratch and you don’t know anyone, whether it’s a new city or a new country, what do you do? Here are six highly repeateable processes I’ve implemented every time I’m building a new network, starting from zero.


Should you go to one of those expensive business conferences

abroad? If you have the winning strategy, definitely!


Read the post here.

Business conferences are expensive, glitzy affairs where you end up running yourself ragged trying to follow every opportunity – and then nothing much comes of them. Right? Not really… There’s a better way: here are the strategies I have used to make the most of business conferences and to earn some of my biggest contracts as a result. I now make it a rule to attend SXSW every year, for example.


An export strategy for SMEs


Read the post here.

For many small businesses, making the decision to export or not seems like a do-or-die situation. But it doesn’t have to be the case. How will your SME find the money to invest in exporting? How will you or your team member find the time to investigate new trade links? Small businesses don’t have the resources and deep pockets of multinationals – but that doesn’t mean that exporting has to be a risky proposition.


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The post Trade missions and exporting for SMEs: 10 resources to help your SME take the leap appeared first on “The Positive Economist” Financial – Economics – Fintech & Entrepreneurship Articles.

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