We help small businesses to overcome systemic barriers in exportsthrough innovative clustering
Blueschild Consulting facilitators for exports of small businesses
Many small companies produce great products consumers are eager for. And though, they have no chance to develop their exports. Why is that?
The explanation is that there are systemic barriers in exports, which a small company alone cannot overcome, such as:
- buyers may be interested in your products, but they are not willing to manage hundreds of small suppliers day by day
- for consultants and representatives your business volume is too small to support you in foreign markets
- for small quantities the logistic costs are very high. In consequence product prices become non-competitive
- export development requires budgets a small business cannot afford
In consequence, small producers even if they offer great products have no chance to develop exports.
Innovative export solution for small businesses:export clusters
For small businesses there is one innovative solution to overcome barriers: to create and participate with other similar companies in clusters. A export cluster is about generating new business power and overcoming systemic barriers by joining forces of many small companies. At Blueschild Consulting we support the design, development, management and operation of innovative export clusters.
How to develop an export cluster
For starting a cluster the overall concept has to be defined first. The concept includes product assortment, profile of cluster members, business model and the operation model.
The product assortment of an export cluster need to be consistent and have a clear positioning.
Cluster members profile
For developing a cluster, profile of members should be clear. There need to be criteria in place what companies can become members and at the same time which companies cannot be accepted as members.
Cluster business model
An important question is how the cluster will operate in the market. There are two main options:
- the export cluster is promoting its members, but each member sells its products separately to buyers. In this case the cluster aims to generate leads, but leaves sales to its members.
- the cluster becomes a business entity and acts as reseller of the products of its members
The first option is quite weak, as buyers at the end have to deal again with many small entities.
Cluster budget & business plan
An export cluster to generate business for its members needs have a budget for marketing business development and operation. This budget has to be financed by its members. The advantage is that costs are shared. As more members a cluster has, as lower the costs for each member.
Cluster operation model
Once an export cluster has been setup, it needs to be efficiently operated. This means an operation concept and an operation team have to be in place.
Case study: Global Food Worldleader in exports of Greek fine foods
An example for a successful export cluster is Global Food World, which is today leader in exports of Greek fine foods. Global Food World manages more than 100 Greek fine food brands and more than 2.000 SKUs, exporting them at global scale.