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Profit From Britain’s Greatest Export For Next To Nothing

Britain is a country of innovation and excellent quality products. There’s so many incredible exports the United Kingdom has to offer that the opportunities are literally endless.

“Can Do”

I’m a big believer in the “can do” mentality. Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, Warren Buffet, Bill Gates and Walt Disney all started with an idea. They took that idea, believed in it and never stopped running with it. Here’s a reality check, the photo on the left was Jeff Bezos office in 1999.

He is now the world’s richest man and he achieved it in less than 20 years.

Britain’s Visiting Tourists Will Spend £26.3 billion In 2018

A friend recently asked me to help him think up a business importing exporting. As I got to thinking, I realised his biggest advantage is where he lives, Oxford. On doing just a small amount of research, the figures show that Britain’s tourism industry is huge and only getting stronger. Here’s a few facts from Visit Britain:

  • 2017 set a record for inbound tourism to the UK in terms of both visits and spend. There were 39.2 million visits to the UK in 2017, up 4.3% on 2016, with these visitors spending £24.5 billion, an 8.7% increase on 2016. The growth in visits was in line with the trend seen over the past five years. The growth in spending was the highest since 2013 and the second highest since 2006; spend per visit rose by 4.3%.
  • Our revised forecast for visits for the calendar year 2018 is for continued growth. We are forecasting 40.9 million visits in 2018, an increase of 4.4% on 2017. Our forecast for spending by visitors in 2018 is £26.3 billion, an increase of 7.1% on 2017.
  • London obviously receives the most visitors but Oxford is already 8th on the list

A very interesting article in The Guardian gave interesting statistics on the amount of Chinese tourists that are now travelling the globe and the UK.

The Back of Your Hand

£26.3 billion is more than enough to go around so why not take your slice? My friend has lived all his life in Oxford and knows it like the back of his hand. His whole network is there so rather than think too far afield I suggested he start at home. Why not create tours of Oxford with your own flare. Sure there’s people doing it already but there’s no market in the world that’s untouched and without competition. He knows Oxford better than anyone and can take visiting tourists not just to the usual sites but his favorite places.

He can try and negotiate deals with local businesses, many of which he already knows, offering his tour groups a discount if brings them.

Home On The Range

One of the points we teach in our free import export training tips is the have a range of products. Always easier to come away with a sale if you offer a range of products opposed to just one. Our Oxford tours idea is no different, which could offer several tours to cater to different audiences:

  • The Pub Crawl: Who doesn’t love a pub crawl. Take your guests on a tour of some of the best local pubs, try some of Britain’s best beers and ale’s!
  • Food Tasting: Tour Oxford’s tea rooms, fish and chip shops, bakery’s, the many places that my friend knows and loves. Ask if they will cater for a group offering smaller portions as a few hours of eating at different places means you can’t eat the usual full size plate.
  • Movie Sets: There’s many movies and series that have been filmed in part in Oxford, running a tour visiting these and giving some local insight is something tourists love to see.
A Captive Audience

Once the tour group is in front of you, there’s a captive audience. Personality will make a difference so interjecting this would make the tour more enjoyable, interact with the group and this builds levels of trust. Building on trust then look to sell products to the group. We all love a souvenir, so negotiating with local businesses that offer fine, perhaps hand made products and these can be offered to the group.

I suggested my friend also makes sure to get the groups contact email and any other details as many tourists will return to a holiday destination. They may want to take another of the tours or hear about newly created ones.

Get their feedback and make changes as that feedback suggests.

Export Britain

Perhaps another piece of the jigsaw is to then get an online ecommerce site and promote this to the same audience and export Britain around the world. See our blog post with practical advice on how to go about getting online and exporting globally, without having to have a huge budget.

Offering tours as well as fine British products online is a double income stream.

You Won’t Know Until You Do It

As you can see, setting up this business really won’t cost a fortune and all you’re doing is taking the knowledge you have and using it to build a business. Take what interests you have and stick to what you know, this is key. Focus on one thing to start with, then grow your business organically.

Once you start to get the audience, you can market to them. The UK has some fantastic products and places to see and millions of people from around the world come here to experience it every day.

Creating your own import export business isn’t rocket science, it just takes a thought and a little imagination.

ABTS Training Voted Best Trade Education Provider 2017

ABTS Training have been awarded BEST TRADE EDUCATION PROVIDER 2017 by Trade Finance Global. It is a great honour to receive this award which recognises the high level of course presentation and content delivered by ABTS Training Services.

The judges comment, “We were impressed with the simple, straightforward and clear way that ABTS presents their course. The course covers vital introductory elements such as Transport types, Payment mechanisms and Incoterms.”
Validated by the London Institute of Shipping and Transport, our course teaches the practical, need-to-know information for the real world issues you’ll face when importing or exporting goods globally. We don’t waste your time teaching you the logistical theory as you’ll never use this in the day-to-day running of your business.  Import export subject matter may not be the most engaging so rather than have hours of videos of a teacher talking in front of a whiteboard or asking you to read through pages and pages of text, we’ve developed a series of entertaining, animated videos that teach all the lessons you’ll need to move your goods from source to destination. We make sure you’ll trade profitably from day one and avoid the common mistakes and pitfalls importing and exporting.
Please contact us for more information on our online import export training course.
Validated By The London Institute Of Shipping And Transport

Our online international trade course has been validated by The London Institute of Shipping and Transport since 2005, giving our students the confidence in the practical, hands-on way we teach you have to import and export. Our course is streamlined, excluding any logistics theory, getting to the point and showing you what you’ll need to know and understand in order to move your goods from source to destination. We do this with a series of entertaining animated videos, opposed to asking you to read pages and pages of text, or listen to a teach at a whiteboard for hours.

We’ve trained hundreds of students and helped further their careers as well as helped setup countless successful businesses, with many of our students now their own boss running their own successful companies.

With over 30 years of experience, we’re here to offer you one-to-one support and bring your career or business to the next level.

Validated

Trade Finance: The new funder on the block for importers and exporters

The construction sector is experiencing the fastest rate of hiring for over 15 years, the pound is stronger than it was 2 years ago across 18 major currencies, and countries are beginning to partner on deals which encourage trade globally.

To accommodate this, business funding has become a hot-topic amongst the SME and corporate community, with the rise of alternative debt and equity funders (e.g. the crowdfunding platform Crowdcube and invoice discounting companies such as MarketInvoice).

Yet 70% of businesses are struggling with getting funding, particularly for purchasing goods and services from overseas, which is surprising given the current position of the UK economy.

Sadly, many companies don’t know where to begin when it comes to funding their business, but what doesn’t help, is that business funding is complicated. Depending on the stage of your business, how much capital you already have, how quickly you need the funding and how long you’ll need it for, the funding you require could vary immensely.

Trade finance, an umbrella term for the ‘financing of international trade’, covers a range of financial products which can help importers and exporters trade. International import and export businesses have the added complications of understanding the mechanisms of trade finance, which involves jurisdiction across different countries, language barriers, understanding shipping protocol and insuring their order.

The most common form of trade finance is a Letter of Credit or Bill of Lading, which are both mechanisms to securitise the assets which are being transported or shipped; in other words, the goods or services are the security to which a funder will lend.

For companies looking to import or export, we’ve put together some tips for ensuring success:

1. Do your due diligence

Most business owners in the space will be aware of their competitors in their market, and the competitors of their suppliers. It’s not hard to pull import or export data from government website or through calling local experts on the field. It’s also worth sense checking your suppliers and customers – are they creditworthy and reliable, do they have trusted reviews?

2. Learn about importing and exporting

Aside from a Letter of Credit Trade Finance deal, it’s vital to understand the mechanisms of transporting and shipping – from freight forwarding, to Bills of Lading. It may be a good idea to go on an education course such as ABTS Training.

3. Talk to a broker

Brokers can offer recommendations or suggestions for a business which could save them time and money. Also, because of their established relationships with many funders, they may be able to negotiate a better deal or rate and find the option which is most suitable for your business.

4. Know your risks

Business owners should know from the outset what the risks and challenges are before undertaking a trade finance deal. Mitigating or reducing these risks through insurance, credit checks, independent analysis and understanding the market that they’re operating versus opportunity and financial benefit of a deal can help determine the go-no-go decision.

5. Don’t underestimate the power of negotiation

Whether it’s your customers, suppliers or financiers, negotiation can often be the make or break for your business. Being able to negotiate terms, prices and rates in a competitive market could give your business a financial advantage.

To conclude, raising funding to help succeed in your import or export business is not easy, but can bring unrivaled success and opportunity for your company. Understanding the fundamentals of the import/export market, mitigating risks and planning carefully though are crucial to protect yourself and the company.

 

Courtesy of our partner Trade Finance Global.  Learn more about trade finance and how it can help your import export business.

Top 10 Tips for Importing and Exporting

Our easy to understand quick guide to importing and exporting.  We off you 10 top tips for starting your own import export business.

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Free Webinar: Introduction to Importing and Exporting – 3rd August 2015

webinarJoin us on 3rd August 2015 for a free webinar where we will introduce you to the world of importing and exporting. We’ll cover many topics including:

Methods of Payment
Negotiation Techniques
Sea / Air freight rates
Marine Insurance

We will end with a question and answer session and hope this will give you some hints and tips and share some of the pitfalls many importers and exporters face.

The webinar is due to start at 11am London time and will last for approximately 1 hour 15 minutes.

sign-up-webinar

Emeralds Could Be A Girls Best Friend

I always dreamed of being my own boss . I wanted to source goods overseas and sell them to wholesalers and retailers in the UK.  I saw many opportunities on my travels to bring unique goods into the UK and sell them, in particular precious stones.

I couldn’t afford to leave my full time employment and devote myself  to my own business as like us all, I had financial commitments.  I did not have any knowledge of International trade so my first move was to get proper training.

I contacted many training companies who offered international trade courses but in the end I decided to go with ABTS Training services because they offered an Online course suited for beginners, so I was able to study in my own time.

I spoke to Alan Bracken of ABTS about my ambitions and current situation.

His advice was invaluable and gave me confidence to pursue my dream.  I remained in full time employment and enrolled in the Online  International Trade course. I studied at my own pace and in my own time.

Once I was confident that I understood what was involved in International Trade and after many phone calls to Alan, I took the plunge and set up a limited company.

As my funds were limited  I relied heavily on the knowledge I gained from the ABTS International Trade course and decided not to import direct from suppliers but to test the market and trade as a commission agent.

After analysing several offers for an agency, I decided to accept an agency for uncut emeralds from a company  and to represent them in the UK as their commission agent.

I made contact with many precious stone wholesalers in the UK. As the ABTS International Trade course advised me, I used the comments I received from wholesalers to refine my presentation and I am now very confident when I meet perspective customers.

I am now working with several wholesalers in the UK and high value orders are in the pipeline. It’s hard work as I am still working full time but it is well worth the effort.  I am looking forward to the day I can become my own boss full time, which is now, not too far away.

The online course gave me the knowledge and confidence I need to take the plunge and start up my own business. Thank you Alan and ABTS Training Services.

Miss. Lina Cardona

Be Proactive, Not Reactive.

At ABTS Taining we always teach our International Trade students the mantra “BE PROACTIVE, NOT REACTIVE”.  This is more important than it sounds. Let me give you an example:

Recently we received an email from someone in Shanghai, China. They visited our website contacted us asking if we can help.

This person had bought a set of four prints in London and had them sent to their home in Shanghai by air. The courier told them that their charge included delivery to their Shanghai home address. However, they received a email from Chinese customs demanding import duty of 10 per cent on the first print and 17 per cent import duty on the three other prints. They had wrongly assumed that if the courier was charging them to deliver the prints to my home it would include any import duty.

If they had known that they would have to pay extra import duty in Shanghai they would never have bought the prints in London.

We advised them to declare the four prints as a set (which they were) as Chinese customs will allow one item (a set) of personal effects into China at 10 per cent duty.

Now this is where being Proactive and not Reactive comes into play.

  • This person should have asked their courier if their charges included delivery to home address Shanghai DUTY INCLUDED OR DUTY EXCLUDED.
  • They should have looked up Import duty on prints and personal allowance BEFORE they bought the prints in order to get a accurate TOTAL price to be paid or to save time, ask the UK courier to undertake this exercise for them.
  • If they were Proactive and not Reactive they would not have encountered such hassle.

When you’re engaged in International Trade you must know the “nitty gritty” of the business such as importing – exporting documentation procedures and custom procedures to name just two.

When you join our on line International Trade course, among other subjects we show you how to look up import duty in ANY country.

We never shy away from helping anyone in distress but we do say if you are going into the business of International Trade, get training or better still go the a company with 25 years practical experience in International Trade and join our online course.

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Getting International Trade Right

Alan Bracken of ABTS Training Services commented: “Many UK companies are now expanding into new global markets which can only be good for our faltering economy.”

“However, they must have a strong understanding about the business of exporting, such as negotiation skills with overseas partners and understanding the different commercial cultures.  They must be in a position to deliver the sharp end of exporting in terms of understanding documentation and freight rates and working with third party providers such as clearing agents and freight forwarders.

“Get it right and it is a smooth operation. Get it wrong and you are in deep trouble.”

Getting it right is the theme of ABTS Trainings’ online import export course.  A practical training course teaching you the necessities of importing and exporting, with free one-to-one support.

The Trouble With Incoterms

Since the introduction of Incoterms 2010, some importers and exporters have been struggling with the new edition especially with the new rule for delivery and passing of risk with FOB, CFR, CIF.

The old “over the ships rail” has gone (how did we ever manage that with RO/RO?) and been replaced with “on board” the vessel, a clearer and more sensible place to transfer risk and delivery.

The new Incoterms DAT and DAP have been a welcome addition for traders, giving them a better variety of delivery points.

Incoterms 2010 has been a welcome and refreshing edition and as ever illustrates clearly the  trader’s responsibilities under place, cost and risk.  However traders are still making the same fundamental mistake with Incoterms 2010 as they did with previous editions.

They do not indicate that the term they quote is subject to Incoterms 2010, thus leaving the responsibility under  place cost and risk up for grabs, contrary to the  reason why  Incoterms  was initially established back in the early 1930s.

If you have been trading under Incoterms 2000, understanding the transition to the latest edition can be accomplished in our half day ‘Incoterms 2010’ course.

For beginners, our online import export course goes into detail on Incoterms 2010 and how it must be used for International trade.

Credit Where Credit’s Due

Almost half of letters of credit received in the UK are unworkable according to recent research – that is the buyer requests documents which the seller is unable to produce.

Recently, for example, a Turkish buyer requested an ATR movement certificate from a UK seller for goods despatched direct from Peru to Izmir in Turkey.  This was not possible as the ATR movement certificate can only be issued for goods which meet with the rules or origin that goods must be manufactured and produced within the EC or in free circulation.

Alan Bracken of ABTS Training Services stated at a recent seminar on letters of credit:  “You get the letter of credit you deserve, if you don’t ask you don’t get.”

“In order to get a workable letter of credit you must give the seller details of the letter of credit you require.”

Join our online course to learn in depth about letters of credit and how essential they are to International trade.

Stronger Trade Performance Must Be Nourished

New export figures published by the ONS give cause for optimism according to the British Chambers of Commerce.

David Kern, Chief Economist at the BCC, commenting on the trade deficit for August, said: “The trade figures for August show an improvement in the overall trade deficit, and are better than expected. A revision of previous figures means that the trade deficit was smaller than previously estimated. Excluding all erratic items, exports have increased more strongly than imports over the last month, and also on a three-monthly basis. It is encouraging that, even in a difficult international environment, Britain is able to strengthen its trading position.

“The figures provide a welcome contrast to the steady flow of negative news we have recently. However we cannot underestimate the challenges ahead for exporters, particularly in the face of the serious problems facing the Eurozone, which remains our major trading partner. As the fiscal austerity plan dampens domestic demand, net exports have to be the main engine of Britain’s economic recovery.

“This means that the government must support a national export drive. Unless we accelerate the pace of export growth and we gain market share from imports in the domestic market, it will be difficult to sustain UK growth. The government must strengthen its backing for SME exporters in key areas such as trade finance, insurance and promotion.

“While a competitive pound and low interest rates can help our exporters, further efforts are needed to ensure that our businesses can compete equitably with foreign exporters. On their part, Britain’s exporters must make every effort to diversify their sales towards fast growing economies such as India, China and Brazil.”

Alan Bracken, course director at ABTS Training Services, added: “Companies who need to export from the UK must retain highly trained staff that can confidently provide an export service to support the companies export drive.”