Chances are if your company is doing well in domestic markets, hitting your revenue goals, and continuing to acquire customers, you’re probably thinking about an international strategy to expand your operations overseas to repeat that success. If, on the other hand, your company is feeling the effects of a sluggish economy, you may be seeking new market opportunities for even more pressing reasons.
Annapolis-based High Street Partners Inc. on Monday announced it has merged with competitor Nair & Co.
The merger will create a global accounting and administration company called Radius.
nce your exports overseas start to grow, how do you grow your business? If you decide to open international operations, there are plenty of decisions to make. Too often, fast-growing companies make the decision to open international offices one day and start looking for staff the next. You need to give yourself time. Expect the process of selling in a new country to take longer than you think. Although it's impossible to say how long it will take (it varies by business and jurisdiction), SMEs routinely underestimate how long it will take to start doing business abroad.
When it comes time to start moving employees around the map, the first thing HR professionals worry about is visas—they’re as vital as plane tickets for getting talent where it needs to be. But if you’re asking employees to make a longer commitment, they may have questions about their status that go beyond visas: if and how they might be eligible for permanent residency and, maybe one day, even citizenship.
It’s a country that continues to fascinate and perplex, and a place that a U.S.-based CFO can’t ignore, whether or not their company is considering China as an option for outsourcing, distributing, selling or competing on a global scale. In some respects, the growth potential can appear too huge to look away.
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Your company is growing steadily with solid projections for the coming years, but to increase growth rates and gain greater market share, you have to realize that you will need to expand globally. After assessing and choosing the best target countries for your products and services, you then need to consider the process of setting up your business entities in each country and your approach to local regulatory compliance.
Your company is doing well, hitting or even exceeding benchmarks. Maybe you’ve had some so-called “pivots” or switch-ups in strategy, but your customers are loving you. In domestic markets, that is.
For high growth companies in today’s most competitive sectors, building an international business is no longer optional. If you’re planning on building a business only within the confines of the United States, you’re planning on leaving market share on the table. But I know from experience that international expansion is a big step, and a daunting one to wrap your head around. So, to help kick-start your thinking, here are the first five things you should know:
1. You Need to Do It
Overseas expansion is a priority for many small and midsize businesses. But complicated rules and cultural differences can make global markets difficult to navigate, said Elizabeth Finn Payne, an adviser at High Street Partners in Boston.
Payne helps companies manage tax implications, streamline operations, hire staff, and gain an understanding of foreign cultures. “Some countries are more challenging than others to enter,” said Payne, who works with customers in more than 25 nations.
Product Name: HSP OverseasConnect
Key features: software suite built to simplify the management and control of international operations. It provides on-demand access to a platform of integrated applications required for in-country success, from cloud-based payroll and vendor payments to expense reimbursements, cash management and local bookkeeping. More info.
Tax laws, human resource requirements and compliance of general business laws are common reasons why U.S. CEOs are afraid to expand into Africa, says a U.S.-based entrepreneur who helps companies do just that.
International expansion can be timely and frustrating for many businesses around the globe.