UK Trade&Investment helps record number of firms earn£3.6bn profit

PN 42/2009 8 April 2009

Data released today shows that UK Trade&Investment (UKTI) is helping hundreds more companies than ever before to export. The latest quarterly survey shows that a record 20,700 businesses were helped to generate£3.6 billion in additional profit.

UKTI customers were interviewed in early 2009 as part of the independent Performance and Impact Monitoring Survey (PIMS). While they reported that the global economic downturn had affected their businesses, over half (51%) were experiencing increasing demand from abroad.

The survey confirmed that UKTI had shot past its target of helping 20,000 businesses in twelve months. It said that 20,700 UK firms had received“significant assistance” from UKTI, an increase of 1,400 companies on the previous survey.

UKTI’s customers, of which 90% are small and medium-sized businesses, estimated that UKTI helped their businesses to generate£3.6 billion in additional profit, up from£3 billion last year.

Minister for Trade and Investment Lord Davies of Abersoch said:

“These excellent results show that UK Trade&Investment is helping UK firms to navigate out of the downturn.

“Companies that export are more resilient. In these difficult times, our challenge is to ensure that businesses know that there is Government help on offer for firms willing to seek out business opportunities overseas. UK Trade&Investment can help to find the markets that can make the difference.”

Changes that came into effect this month mean that UK Trade&Investment is able to offer more help to UK businesses.

From 1 April, UKTI doubled the number of grants that individual businesses can receive for its Tradeshow Access Programme (TAP).

Each year, over 3,000 UK businesses receive TAP grants of up to£1,800 to participate in tradeshows abroad. This financial year, grants are available for over 400 trade shows in many markets. They include the‘Big 5’ construction show in Dubai, an offshore oil&gas show in Brazil, a broadcast media show in Beijing and the Medica life sciences show in Germany.“Solo” TAP grants are also available for companies wishing to exhibit independently at events not listed on the UKTI website.

Under the new rules, the number of grants available to businesses in their lifetime will double to six per company, with the proviso that the company visits at least two different markets. And for businesses that have already benefited from the TAP programme, the slate has been wiped clean, and previously awarded grants will not be taken into account.

Also from 1 April, a new package of support announced by Prime Minister Gordon Brown has come on stream. UKTI’s‘Gateway to Global Growth’ initiative will provide specialist and tailored financial and legal advice to over 1,200 businesses in the next year to support their growth internationally.

UKTI’s Acting Chief Executive Dominic Jermey added:

"Breaking into new markets is never easy but UK Trade&Investment can help to guide firms through to business success. There are great opportunities out there for companies. Our message is that by exporting, you go further.”

UK Trade&Investment is encouraging businesses to register on its website ( www.uktradeinvest.gov.uk) to find out more about the Government help on offer.

Building on its existing efforts to promote the benefits of exporting, UKTI’s advertisements with the message to‘Take it to the WorldUK’ can be seen in major transport hubs in England, in print media and on the UK’s iconic black taxis.

Did you know that TAP grants are available for the following events?

Which event? - Where? - When?

GAMEScom - Germany - 19/08/2009

Tokyo Games Show - Japan - 01/10/2009

Game Connection - France - 08/12/2009

Games Developers Conference (GDC) -  USA - 01/03/2010

Gaming G2E Asia - China - 03/06/2009

Gaming G2E - USA - 01/11/2009

ASIA I-GAMING - China - 01/02/2010

For more information on TAP, please visit www.uktradeinvest.gov.uk/ukti/tap or call 020 7215 8000.

Media contact: Please contact Natasha Guerinoni on 020 7215 4218 or email Natasha.guerinoni@ukti.gsi.gov.uk.

Notes to Editors:

1. Methodology of survey: Customer interactions are captured on UKTI’s Customer Relationship Management (CRM) System. This information is then used for the UKTI Performance and Impact Monitoring Survey (PIMS). PIMS is a customer interview-based survey based on independent telephone interviews with a sample of users of principal services (around 900 companies are sampled for each survey), conducted quarterly on a rolling annual basis.

2. Gateway to Global Growth will support the export efforts of innovative small and medium companies, through UKTI services and accessing specialist third party support. https://www.uktradeinvest.gov.uk/ukti/appmanager/ukti/ourservices?_nfls=false&_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=support_to_succeed

3. Real Help Now: In January Business Secretary Lord Mandelson unveiled a package of measures designed to address the cash flow, credit and investment needs of small and medium businesses. The support package consists of loan guarantees and a new Enterprise Fund aimed at helping companies struggling to access finance for working capital and investment. The online portal can be found at: http://www.businesslink.gov.uk/realhelp/finance.

4. UK Trade&Investment (UKTI) is the government organisation that helps UK-based companies succeed in the global economy. We also help overseas companies bring their high quality investment to the UK’s economy– acknowledged as Europe’s best place from which to succeed in global business. UKTI offers expertise and contacts through its extensive network of specialists in the UK, and in British embassies and other diplomatic offices around the world. We provide companies with the tools they require to be competitive on the world stage. For more information please visit www.uktradeinvest.gov.uk or telephone +44 (0)20 7215 8000.

5. The UK trade facilitation body, SITPRO, is currently consulting businesses about their experiences of international trade regulations. This is part of a cross-government project to create an action plan for reducing the international trade compliance burden. The consultation document and further information about the project can be found at http://www.sitpro.org.uk/regreview/consultation.html.


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