Preparing to export
Preparing to Export to Venezuela
Doing business with Venezuela may seem rather daunting for those new to the market, but taking a strategic approach is the key.
Companies should conduct reliable research before venturing into business in any new territory and Venezuela is no exception. Good research saves money and improves efficiency and performance right from the start.
General introductory business information about Venezuela is readily available and companies can obtain preliminary insights through desk research.
Economic research and sector analysis can be obtained from a large number of leading consultancies, research agencies and public-sector trade promotion organisations.
Furthermore, the increasing use of e-commerce and B2B websites has made it possible to identify, and gain access to, potential partners across the globe. A good place to start is the UKTI pages of the gov.uk website: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/uk-trade-investment, which provides detailed country and sector information. Registration is free and offers additional benefits, such as access to business opportunity alerts and information updates.
Consultation and bespoke research
You should not rely solely on desk research. Websites and online materials can be out of date and the quality and reliability of content varies widely. Sometimes you may simply be unable to find the information you’re looking for. This is why it is essential to verify initial research findings and conduct further investigations.
Often this requires you to map out a bespoke research brief with the help of specialists, exploring what additional information you might need to make an effective entry into the market and how you can make the contacts vital to success. In Venezuela, business is won through the development of personal relationships and face to-face-contact. Venezuela is not a straightforward market and the more contacts you have the easier it is to find a way around certain challenges that may appear. Despite the challenges, many UK companies do good business in Venezuela. The key is to prepare your approach to the market thoroughly and undertake careful market research.
Because of the need to develop personal relationships, often in Spanish, direct sales into the Venezuelan market can be difficult. In most cases it is best to work through a local representative who can help build appropriate contacts, develop sales opportunities, market your products and services and help with the interpretation of local business practice and regulation. The British Embassy UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) team can help identify potential local partners.
Help available for you
UKTI’s team in Venezuela can provide a range of services to British-based companies wishing to grow their business in the Venezuelan market, including: the provision of market information, validated lists of agents/potential partners, key market players or potential customers, establishing the interest of such contacts in working with the company, and arranging appointments. In addition, they can also organise a visit for you to meet contacts or promote your company and its products/services.
Questions to ask yourself before you begin:
It is unlikely that you will have the answers to all these questions at the outset and these “knowledge gaps” should form the basis of further research and investigation.
UKTI offers a range of services to UK-based companies wishing to export overseas. The UKTI team at the British Embassy in Caracas can offer (or guide) UK exporters to the following services:
Overseas Market Introduction Service (OMIS)
OMIS is a chargeable, UKTI-led tailored service available to companies interested in finding out more about an overseas market. In Venezuela it can assist you by undertaking tailored research using UKTI’s extensive network of dedicated researchers based across the market. Typically, an OMIS can provide market research and analysis (e.g. sector reports, market initiatives, regulatory environment, market opportunities), identification of local contacts (e.g. agents, distributors, suppliers, potential partners), and in-market activities (e.g. meeting arrangements, event organisation such as workshops, seminars, promotional activities and product launches).
Events and seminars
UKTI organises business events, seminars and workshops in the UK and overseas, covering a wide range of business interests and issues. Not only do these events inform companies about business opportunities and offer the latest market information, they also provide a valuable platform for networking and sharing experiences with like-minded peers, not to mention regular access to visiting Venezuelan delegations. Sign up to a forthcoming event by visiting: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/uk-trade-investment
Market visits and trade missions
Visiting Venezuela is an invaluable part of the process of market entry. You will experience the marketplace first-hand and make the contacts necessary to do business. This is essential, but it will be much more effective with careful planning. UKTI organises regular trade missions to Venezuela where you can benefit from group activities, in addition to your own programme. An OMIS can be used to support visits, providing bespoke meeting arrangements with appropriate potential partners, agents and distributors, or with relevant government officials.
Passport to Export
This provides new and inexperienced exporters with the training, planning advice and ongoing UKTI support they need to succeed overseas.
Gateway to Global Growth
This is a free UKTI service to experienced exporters. It offers a strategic review, planning advice and support to help companies build on their previous success and develop new overseas markets.
These can be emailed directly into your inbox, highlighting hot leads in Venezuela. Companies can sign up for this free service by visiting: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/uk-trade-investment
Export Communications Review (ECR)
This assesses the way companies communicate with overseas customers and makes practical recommendations for improvement. The service is managed for UKTI by the British Chambers of Commerce.
Export Marketing Research Scheme (EMRS)
EMRS offers support, advice and grant funding to eligible companies wishing to research a potential export market. The service is managed for UKTI by the British Chambers of Commerce.
Foreign & Commonwealth Office (FCO) Country Updates
These provide authoritative analysis of emerging markets and identify key issues relevant to UK businesses. The updates are compiled by British embassies, which have access to high-level government and business contacts. Visit: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/foreign-commonwealth-office
For more information on any of these services, please contact your local UKTI International Trade Team. See www.gov.uk/government/organisations/uk-trade-investment
Source - UKTI
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