Following three consecutive surveys showing declining confidence among Canadian exporters, the Trade Confidence Index (TCI) score for the Spring 2016 survey showed an increase.
The overall increase reported corresponds to improved outlooks across all five TCI elements. In particular, this survey saw a greater number of respondents believing domestic sales, domestic economic conditions, and world economic conditions will stay the same or improve over the next six months.
This is a survey Economic Development Canada performed in Spring of this year. As we head into the tail end of 2016, how do you feel about your business prospects? Are you still hopeful Western Canada will get back to normal soon, and we can all breathe a sigh of relief, lick our wounds, and get busy? Is that enough?
If you haven’t thought of or implemented a solid export strategy yet, what are you waiting for? Whether our beloved oil patch gets back to any semblance of order in the next year or not, you should consider picking up your proverbial tent and seeing what the other campgrounds have to offer.
The TCI survey also indicated 54% of business respondents are planning to export to new markets over the next two years. Main markets include United Kingdom, Brazil, Mexico, China, and Germany.
Are you going to be one of them?
For many business owners, the idea of starting up an office in another country is a bit daunting. Understandable. However, there is help available right here in our own backyard. Let me introduce you to Rainmaker Global Business Development. Rainmaker is a member of our Oilfield HUB’s VIP team of industry experts available to help you with your business requirements. Clark Grue, President and CEO at Rainmaker, identified a need to help companies expand into new markets.
According to Grue, “Global markets are closer than you think. And, there are other ways to grow your business when local conditions are tough. Many foreign markets are not experiencing the same downturn. We identify and qualify these for our clients.” Rainmaker specializes in helping companies successfully expand to new markets whether that is next door to Saskatchewan or across the pond to Slovakia. He and his team of experts worldwide can help that process along, prevent you from falling into expensive pitfalls, and ultimately save you money and headache. Grue believes there is a world of opportunity outside of our border, and he is doing his best to help.
In May of this year, I had the privilege of participating as a partner in the Alberta Export Readiness Roadshow that was the brainchild of Grue. His plan was to bring together a team of industry specific experts to help Alberta companies get access to the people and services they need to identify opportunities and transition successfully to other markets. We all hit the road in Calgary, Red Deer, and Edmonton to spread the word and provide advice. All in all, it was a tremendous response and further illustrates the need to show companies the way to successful export. I was excited to represent Oilfield HUB as part of the package of partners, including ATB, Deloitte, Calgary/ Edmonton Airport Authority, EDC, and the American Chamber of Commerce just to name a few.
The message I wanted to bring to this event was focused on industry collaboration. We are all forced to cooperate in ways that were unheard of in previous years due to the state of affairs we find ourselves in, but as we have heard on many occasions this last year, Albertans are a resilient bunch.
If you missed the Export Readiness Roadshow, don’t fret. The results were so successful there is another series scheduled for this Fall. Details will be released soon regarding dates and cities. If you want to expand your business to other markets, this is a great way to get the information you need to do it. Avoid the mistakes others have made by getting a head start on learning how to be successful and not having to retreat with your tail between your legs.
Nobody wants to see that!!