Business has been good across the United States in recent months, with a stable stock market, low cost of money, minimal unemployment and growing opportunity. Many business owners have capitalized on this situation and introduced some aggressive expansion policies to strike while the iron is really hot. You may be lucky enough to find yourself in this position and have recently had one of your best years at the business helm, but like any good entrepreneur you are always looking for additional possibilities. Perhaps it is time for you to turn overseas and consider expanding into Europe. What do you need to take into account, as you consider this type of quantum leap?
Setting up Shop
It’s a well-worn cliche, but the world is a big place and there are considerable opportunities to be found beyond the fifty states. One of the biggest hurdles, however, will be unfamiliarity with the rules and regulations that may guide business activities like yours in the chosen territory.
You need to analyse these very carefully and begin by establishing the right type of legal footprint for your company, to protect your assets and reputation. Some people may choose to test the waters first by entering into an agreement with a domestic organisation or introducing project-based contractors at the local level.
You may find it financially attractive to consider an establishment overseas, as many companies have a lower corporate tax structure than the USA. If so, you will need to take legal advice to ensure that you protect yourself and always comply with tax legislation both at home and abroad.
Culture and Language
Some people may shy away from expanding internationally due to cultural differences, and they may also worry about the language barrier. These are valid concerns, but if you’re looking at Europe in particular, remember that Ireland is English-speaking and now the only country in EU that can boast of this advantage.
Getting the Right People
Examine your requirements from a talent pool point of view and remember that you are best placed to determine who fits the mould and can best understand your company’s culture and operating system. Investigate the talent pool at your destination to see if you can find the right staff to make your new project a viable proposition. Importantly, every business relies implicitly on its staffing structure and your new venture will sink or swim based on your approach to this challenge.
Once again, it may be beneficial for you to bring in established contractors in the foreign country first, who can help you to bed in slowly and to steer you away from any bad decisions in the early days. They will be able to help you with the culture, so you can expand based on education and first-hand knowledge instead.
Incentives and Immigration
As the world truly is a global market from an economic perspective, many countries have an aggressive policy in place to solicit companies just like yours. It pays to consider these different opportunities to see what government assistance you could get to help set up locally.
You may be able to take advantage of relaxed immigration policies in some cases, so you can bring in key talent instead, to help you get everything off the ground. Locals may also be able to help you access materials and resources crucial to your type of product or service, by breaking down barriers that may otherwise exist.
Making Your Move
If you feel that you may soon reach a plateau in your local market at home and have expanded from sea to shining sea, then international markets are very attractive. Just make sure that you spend a great deal of time to research the various opportunities from every angle, so you always make an educated decision.