Grow Through International Expansion
Navigating the Complexities of Expanding in the UAE with Jenny Hunt #46

Navigating the Complexities of Expanding in the UAE with Jenny Hunt #46

October 7, 2019

What do you think of when you think of Dubai, Abu Dhabi and the rest of the UAE (United Arab Emirates)? Time was when it was just oil, but these days it’s also tourism and business in general – witness all those gleaming tower blocks one sees in photos. The growth of the economy has been staggering – and that’s led to ever increasing numbers of businesses planning to expand there. Some simply use the UAE as a base from which to service the whole Middle East and Indian Ocean regions, but there’s an increasing number recognising its importance and value for doing in-country business.

Talking to me about it in this podcast is Jenny Hunt. Jenny’s CV is impressive. She is ranked in FORBES' Top 100 Most Influential Women in the Middle East and she is CEO Today's 2019 Business Awards winner. Jenny’s also a best selling author, is an international speaker and regularly provides mission briefings to delegations about setting up and doing business in Abu Dhabi.

As the Founding Partner & CEO of the Gateway Group of Companies, based in Abu Dhabi, Jenny helps companies of all kinds navigate the complexities and get established successfully throughout the UAE.  So when it comes to this subject, she knows it all. Take a listen.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Awareness for Greatness in International Business with Andoni Silva #45

Awareness for Greatness in International Business with Andoni Silva #45

September 30, 2019

Andoni Silva is a self-styled Awareness coach, based in Spain but working all over Europe. His method is said to help high performers and entrepreneurs achieve a successful, enjoyable and fulfilling work-life balance

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Clarity and Confidence - The Importance of Language with Susan Heaton-Wright | Superstar Communicator #44

Clarity and Confidence - The Importance of Language with Susan Heaton-Wright | Superstar Communicator #44

September 24, 2019

Susan Heaton-Wright is an impact, communications and speaking trainer for emerging leaders and the creator of the Superstar Communicator™ philosophy. She is an international speaker; the MD of award winning music company, Viva Live Music, podcaster and a former prize winning international opera singer.

She delivers seminars, workshops and individual training for many companies including Astra Zeneca, Shell, AXA and Quintiles. She is regularly interviewed on BBC Radio Five Live; BBC2, local radios and international podcasts. Susan has contributed to articles in Forbes, The Guardian, Huffington Post, Thrive Global, The Scotsman and trade publications.

Susan is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society, The Royal Society of Arts and the Incorporated Society of Musicians. She leads a project of musicians in Greece annually, to deliver music workshops to refugees in Athens as part of the ‘Love without Borders’ charity.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Making Friends and Doing Business – Why You Need a Culture Pilot with Jan de Haldevang #43

Making Friends and Doing Business – Why You Need a Culture Pilot with Jan de Haldevang #43

September 18, 2019

Jan’s a really interesting person. He was born in Arabia and travelled all his life; he’s fluent in Arabic and German as well as English. He was a soldier in Iraq, Oman, Northern Ireland and Cyprus, before becoming a professional sales and marketing executive for some major companies, specialising in Middle Eastern markets. Now, as Senior Partner of International Culture Pilot, he and his team are helping others adapt culturally to the markets they want to work in – learning how to communicate successfully and in a culturally aware way.

Take a listen – wherever in the world you’re headed, Jan’s got some really useful insights to share with us.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

M&A as a Fast Track Route to International Expansion with Oliver Froment | Pro Capital #42

M&A as a Fast Track Route to International Expansion with Oliver Froment | Pro Capital #42

September 6, 2019

In this podcast, I’m in conversation with another Oliver, Oliver Froment. With his team in Pro Capital, based in London, Oliver is dedicated to helping those smaller companies acquire or merge with suitable targets in other countries and, where necessary, get the financing they need to do that.

Oliver has been working in finance for a long time. He founded his company, Pro Capital Ltd, in 1993 after he’d already built up more than 10 years of extensive international financial and corporate experience.  The firm is FCA regulated, starting as a capital market firm transacting debt and equity-linked securities and investment and advisory services. More recently Oliver has focused on Mergers and Acquisitions and raising capital for companies, completing over 1000 transactions in 40 countries.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Bilingual Skills - Outsourcing in Palestine with Jerry Marshall | Transcend #41

Bilingual Skills - Outsourcing in Palestine with Jerry Marshall | Transcend #41

August 26, 2019

One territory that definitely qualifies as “off the usual business radar” is Palestine. It’s clearly not a valuable export market. But, for businesses active in the Middle East, or looking at expanding there, there are some real opportunities to take advantage of its positioning as a hub.

In this podcast, our host, Oliver Dowson, is in conversation with Jerry Marshall, Chairman of Transcend, a company founded by partners from the UK, USA and Palestine and with follow on investment from the Palestine Investment Fund. In this Grow through International Expansion podcast Jerry tells us about what they’re doing and why, and introduces the opportunities for overseas companies to tap into that talent pool.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

The Beauty Parade: Finding a Business Partner Abroad #40

The Beauty Parade: Finding a Business Partner Abroad #40

August 19, 2019

Do first impressions lie? On paper, the company looked impressive. Out of the six potential partners that we’d shortlisted, and that I’d travelled to Mumbai to meet, this one looked the best on paper. Rajesh, the young CEO who came to meet me at my hotel looked the part too – immaculately dressed, well spoken, and clearly well organised, as he laid out paperwork and photos on the table in front of us.

All was well until I said “So where’s your office? Let’s go there”.

These days, it’s easier than ever to dissimulate having a successful business. Websites can be created easily and cheaply. Serviced offices can be rented by the hour. Out of country and out of area phone numbers can be got, using Skype, for a few pounds or dollars.

So, if you’re serious about doing business with someone, particularly in another country where you’re not going to have day-to-day oversight, you need to check them out in person. As the Americans say, “lift the hood and kick the tyres”. Don’t rely on the word of a local representative in your own country. Don’t accept meetings at hotels. Don’t believe what you see on a website until you see it for yourself.

Not all that glitters is gold.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Tax Planning for an International Business with Jimmy Sexton | Esquire Group #39

Tax Planning for an International Business with Jimmy Sexton | Esquire Group #39

July 30, 2019

Back in 1789, Benjamin Franklin, one of the founding fathers of the United States, coined a quote that’s lived to this day. “in this world, nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes.”

And nobody wants to pay more tax than they need to, right? We’re always hearing about those big multinationals that make billions of profit but have organised their affairs so that, quite legally, they pay little or no tax.

Yet, strangely, a high proportion of small and medium businesses embarking on international expansion don’t plan for it at all – or at least not until they’re already up and running, by which time it may be too late to optimise their taxes. Similarly, staff who get posted abroad – new expats – enthusiastically spend time thinking about their accommodation and benefits but don’t plan their taxes.

There are lots of taxes to think about – corporation, payroll, sales, turnover, income and the list goes on - and they differ in every country. Often a company will be liable for taxes in both the country it’s operating in and its home country.

Whilst international business yields great results if done right, it can be disastrous with the authorities – and incredibly costly - if it’s not. Tax authorities around the world have more tools than ever to catch mistakes – and the rules can be so complex that it’s easy to make them. Like every other aspect of growing international, tax needs to be planned in advance, and not dealt with in a panic afterwards.

In this Grow through International Expansion podcast, our host, Oliver Dowson, is talking with Jimmy Sexton. Jimmy’s an expert in international taxation and, through his company the Esquire Group, has been advising clients for over 15 years. He’s based in Dubai but works and travels across Europe, the Middle East and the Americas.

Jimmy’s work has been published by CNN, the Washington Post and Forbes. He’s spoken at the UN and the American Chamber of Commerce.

Tax is certain. What’s not certain is how much you have to pay. We think you’ll find Jimmy’s insights fascinating.

If you’re interested, you can find out more about Jimmy and Esquire Group at Grow International Website

Free Trade Agreements – What are the Real Opportunities for the UK? #38

Free Trade Agreements – What are the Real Opportunities for the UK? #38

July 22, 2019

Those politicians who are enthusiastic about Brexit are always talking about the UK having great opportunities for trade after leaving the EU. Those who oppose Brexit – and many who are on the fence – dismiss those potential opportunities, at least for the short term, and say that the loss of EU trade would more than outweigh any new benefits.

Who’s right?

In previous episodes of this series of podcasts and articles, we’ve explained the principles and legal framework behind Free Trade Agreements, and looked at some of the benefits and downsides of ones that have been negotiated in the past. In this final episode, I’m going to talk about the reality of the opportunities for the UK to grow its trade and its economy through new Free Trade Agreements struck as an independent country.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Free Trade Agreements – Past Successes and Failures – What Lessons Can We Learn? #37

Free Trade Agreements – Past Successes and Failures – What Lessons Can We Learn? #37

July 15, 2019

In this series of four Grow through International Expansion podcasts and articles, our host Oliver Dowson explores all the key aspects of Free Trade Agreements, adding in the missing bits that the selective explanations from politicians and many journalists omit, stripping away false optimism and pessimism, with the aim of presenting the full and clear explanations that entrepreneurs, consumers and taxpayers need.

There are now more than 400 Trade Agreements in force globally, some of them relatively new but others that were negotiated decades ago. For this episode, Oliver has been reading up many of the academic studies that have been done into the impact of established “deals” – the successes and failures – to see what can be learnt.

Such lessons are useful from two points of view.

One is governmental – when it comes to negotiating new Trade Agreements, what risks need to be avoided and which opportunities grasped. You, our audience, many of you entrepreneurs, all of you consumers and taxpayers, will be more interested in the second reason for looking at the history of trade deals – which is to get a better informed understanding of what benefits can realistically be expected, and the risks that could turn a trade deal negative.

If you missed earlier episodes, you can find them on our Grow through International Expansion platform, https://growinternational.org . Our platform is independent, carries no advertising and is not for profit – we seek to deliver useful, valuable content, essential for all those who have interest in international business and global trade.

Free Trade Agreements – The World Trade Organisation, Gatt And The Other Players You Need To Know About #36

Free Trade Agreements – The World Trade Organisation, Gatt And The Other Players You Need To Know About #36

July 8, 2019

Most export-minded business people – and certainly almost all politicians - enthusiastically expect Free Trade Agreements to bring them great business growth. Others, however, fear their impact, and with the growth of populism and “My Country First” ideologies, there’s been a backlash against “globalisation”.

One common thread here is that most people, whichever side they’re on, don’t understand the whole picture. That’s hardly surprising, as it’s a much more complicated subject than it might seem. Even if what the news and politicians tell us is not “fake”, it’s certainly selective. So here at Grow through International Expansion, we’re setting out to explain everything that you should know about Trade Agreements, clearly and without any prejudices.  There’s a lot to tell, so we’ve split it across four episodes and articles.

If you’re an exporter or importer you definitely need to listen – and it’s well worthwhile if you’re in any kind of business at all. But frankly, everyone should be better informed – in the UK, with Brexit predicated on the promise of future trade deals, and in the USA and other countries where trade wars are being started or threatened because of the perception that previous “deals” have given too much away.

In this episode, we’ll look at the recent history of trade deals, cut through the jargon, look at the key principles and, after all of that, get a pretty good understanding of why FTAs are so difficult to negotiate.

If you missed Episode 1, which set out the various types of Trade Agreements, you can catch it here.

Free Trade Agreements – The Principles Explained #35

Free Trade Agreements – The Principles Explained #35

July 1, 2019

Free Trade Agreements (FTAs) are treaties between two or more countries that dictate the tariffs, taxes and duties imposed on imports and exports, and the regulations that are applied on quality, safety and other relevant matters.

Not all Trade Agreements are free – and even in a Free Trade Agreement, it’s not necessarily the case that all imports and exports are zero-rated. Nevertheless, the term is invariably used – and the “free” is just one of the many wrong assumptions and misunderstandings that many people (including many politicians) have.

Want to Become an Expert in Free Trade Agreements? #34

Want to Become an Expert in Free Trade Agreements? #34

June 27, 2019

Introducing the new series on international Free Trade Agreements that we'll be publishing on Grow through International Expansion over the next few weeks

Seeing across the world with Augmented Reality with Patrick Liddy | UtilityAR #33

Seeing across the world with Augmented Reality with Patrick Liddy | UtilityAR #33

June 10, 2019

Augmented Reality sounds so exciting. Put on the magic glasses and escape to another world…..

But let’s come down to earth. It’s certainly a technology that promises amazing things and, with the right application, can bring huge new benefits to business. In this podcast, our host Oliver Dowson is talking with Patrick Liddy, a founder of UtilityAR. They’ve developed a great application of Augmented Reality – or AR as it’s abbreviated – for engineering.

Patrick is an energy engineer by profession, and a true innovator. Back in 2006, he founded Innovation Energy in Dublin, one of the first electricity demand response systems in Europe. He went on to sell that to a US corporation before, more recently, starting UtilityAR.

When you have a moment, take a look at Patrick’s video that we’ve posted on our growinternational.org website. It’ll help you better understand what we’re talking about.

But right now, imagine you’re an engineer going to fix a complex piece of equipment that you’ve never worked on before. Now, think of putting on a pair of special glasses. You can see that piece of equipment through the lenses, just as you would any other glasses, but as well, you can see diagrams, text and video clips projected into a corner of your vision, and hear instructions from a colleague or instructor  - who may be thousands of miles away.

When one thinks of the cost and the huge amount of time spent not just travelling, but negotiating backstage access to sites, it’s easy to understand the advantages of being able to kit out one of the site crew with an AR headset and direct them remotely. It could achieve better results, more quickly and at much lower cost.

Even if you don’t relate to engineering, this conversation with Patrick is illuminating. There must be so many practical applications of Augmented Reality waiting to be developed.

For more details on UtilityAR, check our website https://www.growinternational.org/

 

Resolving the HR issues of Emigration – with Chris Carman #32

Resolving the HR issues of Emigration – with Chris Carman #32

June 2, 2019

For decades, Australia has been the migration destination of choice for so many people. If you’re doubtful, you only have to visit to understand why. I’ve often described it as what the UK ought to be like with added space and, of course, sunshine. Nowadays skilled migrants go there from all over the world.

In this podcast I’m talking to Chris Carman, a specialist in helping people emigrate to Australia and aiding companies transfer staff there. In doing that, over the past decade, he and his team, looking beyond Australasia, have developed services and software that helps companies successfully circumnavigate the complex world of employing overseas workers and expanding their business operations in all countries of the world.

Chris says that in his spare time he loves boxing. He says it forces him to think quickly, react appropriately and stay ahead of the game - all critical skills for business. I came out of our conversation unbruised, but much better informed.