Overseas expansion

Given the increasingly global business world that we all now inhabit, perhaps 2016 is the year to consider expanding your business into overseas markets. Consider these factors when creating your overseas expansion strategy:

Economic conditions:

Probably the most important factor to consider is the economic performance of the country in which you want to invest. Ensure that you and your management team obtain up to date economic reports and forecasts. Study the trajectory of economic growth over the last decade or so.

Tax structure:

You should get some tax advice before expanding into an overseas country. You don’t want to set up in a country that has disproportionately high taxation for foreign businesses.

Political stability:

No matter how attractive the market or how big the purchasing power of the country looks at the moment, you do not want to set up your business in a country with regular political upheaval.

Real estate matters:

Do your research and ensure you understand the property market in your target country. Is there tax relief available for businesses who lease office space? Make sure you research the premises costs and get professional advice before signing up to an office lease.

Language and culture:

Make sure you and your team have the necessary language skills and consider hiring local people to assist you in understanding the local culture and business customs.

Skillsets in the local labour market:

If your business requires skilled labour, ensure that the country in which you are setting up has a skilled workforce.

Infrastructure: Good roads, availability of sea and air connectivity, reliable power and water supply are essential for any business operations as well as good internet connectivity.

Research, visit regularly and plan properly:

Visit the target country regularly before set up so you have a good understanding of all of the above factors. Create a business plan which documents how you will go about setting up in your target country. Use up to date market research in order to understand potential demand for your products or services. Set out your approach and follow it rigorously.

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