I did once, and saw a whole new world of opportunity… in Europe.

Martin Oxley, Executive Chairman of UBQ strategic partner, Exorigo-Upos, provides us with his thoughts on how UK businesses can adjust to the ‘new normal’ of Brexit.

European Union flag outside Downing Street
Despite the UK’s global ambition, we have been, are, and always will be in Europe. Our home market is Europe and Europe is our single largest market. We never optimized our position in Europe, now is the time to do so.
It amazes me how flippantly people talk about global opportunity, somewhat ironically, as our continental colleagues rise up, and new self-sufficient regions are created, repeating the course of history. The hard reality is countries are most likely to trade with their proximate partners. For manufactured goods that will always be the case, with new trade models supporting that. Anything else risks, expensive outward investment. For many UK exporters, Europe is a market of choice, and will remain so for many years to come.
Because of the 2020 Festive Season Trade Deal, some argue the biggest in our history, which was launched as promised in December, right in the middle of a Global Pandemic, we are now grappling with a new reality, coming in the wake of dismantling a fine-tuned trading engine, which has enjoyed continuous improvement for nearly 30 years. We joined Europe 20 years earlier. The world’s biggest ever peacetime project. One of the world’s most successful social projects. Yes, the European project has its weaknesses, not the subject for this discussion today, but nobody can deny it has been an unprecedented source of wealth creation for the UK for the last 30 years. And it was easy to export.
Trading with old friends – the road ahead. A Europe of Opportunity.
We are at a crossroads, which seems a bit like an inconvenient diversion from the normal. Look a little deeper though, and amidst all the current mess, there is significant opportunity across the single market. Brexit, COVID and Sustainability have forced the pace of an already speedy transition towards a digital economy. I wanted to outline 5 ideas how the UK can seize the moment, change its model, and rise to the challenge of the ‘New Normal’ in the biggest trading bloc in the world:
  • Local Convenience – keep your stock in Europe, in a cost-efficient location, within easy reach of your major markets

  • Online Network Fast – Manufacturer, exporter, B2C, B2B, DTC – create a convenient local, ecommerce shop quickly, and integrate it with customer enabled distribution and automated service

  • Empowered Marketplace – Look up relevant, local marketplaces and get on them fast. If there isn’t one for your niche, crowd source some partners and develop one for yourselves
  • Re-purpose returns – it’s not sustainable to bring your product back to the UK or have a big bonfire in Europe. Get creative and look at something which creates sustainable value in market

  • New Trusted Partner Networks – in the pre-digital era, people danced a line between their own shop networks and franchises. There’s a long list of examples where that didn’t really work. For B2B, DTC and traditional B2C, there are now a plethora of opportunities without leaving your office. Today, you need a trusted friend in Europe, more than ever, plugged into a #digital ecosystem
There’s a whole new world of opportunity in Europe – it might be a bit different, but it’s well worth a look
… I mentioned Brexit once, and saw a whole new world of opportunity – Europe’s next door!
Martin has lived, worked and breathed business in Europe for the last 30 years. He is passionate about value creation, doing things differently and customer service excellence. #Digital is the new way of delivering that. If you’re not quite sure which way to turn at the new crossroad, get in touch.

More UBQ Insights

We Are Hiring – Sales Director

We are looking for an experienced Sales Director to join our team and help us grow our digital agency. The ideal candidate will have a proven track record of success in selling professional digital agency services.

Read More »