Avoiding the Pittfalls
MAKING A PROFIT and staying competitive are the measures of success of American companies. Today many are going the world over to search for greener and greater success to stay ahead of competitors.
Before you throw your products and service into the export ring:
(1) Be sure you are committed to, and ready for the possibility of a long bout:
(2) Decide on the market you are going to approach, evaluate any existing
Competitions’s strengths and weaknesses, and:
(3) Evaluate your own company’s strengths and weakness.
Now you are ready to:
First and foremost in investing into the African market is to be focused. Narrow down your products/services to one well suited to Africa. Do not spread yourself thin. Stay within a few products/services at a time. Once you have consolidated your products/services then you can expand your operations.
DEVELOP SOLID CONTACTS
Find solid contacts in the African country you intend to do business. One of the easiest way and least expensive is to tap into the minds of local American college students. They want to see their native countries prosper and would probably welcome the opportunity to help create constructive business ventures. They could help with matters of products, consumer tendencies, approach competition, timing, and political outlook.
CONSOLIDATE YOUR LEADS
Once you have develop this solid contacts in Africa, work to make them strong and lasting. These relationships will be beneficial as you develop clear and precise picture of the country’s business style and regulations. They could help you with some spot-deals timed so perfectly they cannot be refused. Pronto! An instant return on your investment.
LEARN THE BANKING SYSTEM AND IMPORT REGULATIONS
Understand the country’s monetary system and exchange rates. These are very crucial to ROI, watch the trend of the monetary exchange to the dollar and adjust accordingly. Also work with the currency that is most conducive to the deal. Regulations for foreign investors are a fact of trade. Your Africa contacts can help you sorts these out as well.
FORGET ABOUT THE BIG TICKET ITEMS
Think about how the Chinese and Japanese invaded the American market place, they came in and are still coming in with very low priced products. Yes, they buy capital goods from America, however, these equipments produce low priced products that floods the American markets and make them millions more that the cost of the capital goods they purchase from America, causing a mass deficit.
That is the way you approach the African marketplace. Remember, that the income level is different and there are more poor people in the world than rich people. I will recommend you tailor your product to the masses and not just selected few. Once you get into the system and you know your way, then there will be plenty of room and time for the big-ticket items later.
Remember, the bigger the investments, the higher the risk, yes the bigger the profits or dividends too. Because the African market is so large, your company can reach their maximum efficiency level, i.e. make profit faster than any other marketplace. So it is okay to start small. African customers are very loyal. Their business, once gained, is usually lasting. Affiliations.
JOINT VENTURE PARTNERSHIP
Companies hesitant about tackling to African market should form partnerships with companies in Africa. Benefits could include technical resources, financial advantages and political considerations. A joint venture with an African companies is an inexpensive way to acquiring African marketplace skills and quickly securing buyer/supplier relationship.
SEEK HELP FROM EXPORT MANAGEMENT COMPANIES
If you need assistance to successfully export to Africa, please seek assistance of an export management company-you supply the products and they take care of the negotiating. Be sure that the company you choose have extensive African business ties. It makes good business sense to get your information directly from sources that understand exactly what is necessary to put together successful African business deals.
Note: I have 25 years experience I can share with you in your quest.
FEDERAL PROGRAMS FOR EXPORTING
With the current state of the financial crises at home, there are many federal programs geared towards supporting and encouraging exporting American products/services. Tap into them, they may offset your initial cost of exporting to Africa. There are other many programs you should research to aid your venture.
I look forward to hear about your success in the African Marketplace, just like Zig Zilar would say, “I Hope to See you at the top”
THE TIMING IS RIGHT AND DON’T GO TO THE AFRICAN MARKET ALONE