Nearly four in five UK micro-multinationals feel international trade is just as accessible for small businesses.
Micro-multinationals are small, entrepreneurial businesses that complement domestic operations by opening offices or hiring staff in one or more overseas markets.
In the UK, 40 per cent of micro-multinationals have opened offices in new markets in the last five years – one of the highest rates in the world – while three in ten have increased overseas employee numbers, according to a study by Fedex Express.
The UK is also leading the way in international recruitment, finding it easier than any other country to source talent in other markets.
Martin Davidian, managing director of sales at the UK North and Ireland says, ‘Our research shows that confidence in overseas opportunities is increasing in the UK, with more than half of those surveyed perceiving that being a micro-multinational gives them a greater advantage over single market SMEs.
‘By providing a greater understanding of the benefits available to UK micro-multinationals, we can help break down the barriers for entry and further strengthen the economy.’
In a worldwide context, 31 per cent of micro-multinationals are growing at a rate of 11 per cent or more, compared to just 21 per cent of SMEs in the same position.
Different skill sets, technological benefits and lower overheads are listed by UK micro-multinationals as the top three factors contributing to this superior performance.
Additionally, when asked to describe themselves, the words ‘innovative’, and ‘entrepreneurial’ top the list, with more than half of UK micro-multinationals using these descriptors.
Globally, all micro-multinationals believe having a presence in multiple markets makes it easier to sell goods cross-border, with more claiming it is easier to operate internationally now than it was in 2010.
Davidian adds that, with a wealth of benefits for the taking, becoming a micro-multinational is certainly something SMEs should consider.
‘Micro businesses have the agility to respond quickly to market changes, which is more essential than ever in today’s connected world.
‘Innovation has always been stimulated by international trade, so as logistics experts, it’s vital we are primed to help businesses of all sizes take advantage of global opportunities. UK micro-multinationals are no exception, and equipped with the right support could change the face of global business as we know it.’
Further reading on exporting
See also: No export-led recovery for SMEs