CommonwealthFirst hosted its first Export Day on Monday 17th July at One Great George Street, London. The event combined its eighty SME Export Champions with business mentors, government and business representatives.
The highlight of the event was the introduction of the latest cohort of UK SME Export Champions. These companies represent various regions and business sectors, showing rich breadth of innovation and excellence that the UK has to offer the world. These include businesses delivering off-grid renewable energy, healthy snacks, innovative antimicrobial technology, teddy bears, and even a digital knitting machine.
Whilst most of the Export Day was focused on encouraging cross sector collaborations, there were presentations from Richard Snowdon, Director at Royal Mail International on ‘exporting through ecommerce’, and Luke Walden, FX Specialist at Godi Financial on ‘FX management as an early stage exporter’.
Opening the Export Day, Lord Marland, Chairman of the Commonwealth Enterprise & Investment Council (CWEIC) said, “The trading environment is very challenging. The CommonwealthFirst programme provides a wonderful platform combining support and mentoring with high profiled trade missions, but it is only through an on-going focus on improving the quality of products and services along with excellent customer service, sensitive to diverse cultural needs.”
Applications to become an Export Champion for the CommonwealthFirst programme are ongoing. All submissions will be considered for our fourth and final cohort to be announced in winter 2017. Apply now!
CommonwealthFirst is the brainchild of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council (CWEIC) with Royal Mail as lead sponsor and i-genius as implementation partner. Its mission is to encourage and support small and medium enterprises to trade and invest across the Commonwealth. Its SME trade missions have been to India, Malaysia and Singapore with the next one to Canada scheduled for October.
CommonwealthFirst is delighted to announce the third cohort of Commonwealth Export Champions programme. Representing various regions of the UK and business sectors, our latest batch of Export Champions applicants proved to be of the highest calibre yet and they highlight the variety of innovation and excellence that the UK SME sector has to offer the world. Applicants included off-grid renewable energy, healthy snacks, innovative antimicrobial technology, teddy bears, a digital knitting machine, as well as award winning baby and children’s food.
CommonwealthFirst, in partnership with Royal Mail and i-genius as implementation partner, was established by the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council to encourage small and medium enterprises (SMEs) to trade and invest across the Commonwealth; a market comprising 52 English speaking countries with a combined population of 2.2 billion – at least 60% of whom are under the age of 30 – and a combined GDP of approximately US$9.6 trillion.
Along with our first and second cohort, new Export Champions will benefit from access to high-level networking events and introductions, training, mentoring and tailored trade missions – with Canada and Australia taking place this autumn and next spring respectively.
Richard Burge, Chief Executive of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, said “I am delighted to see such an exciting array of applicants to become CommonwealthFirst Export Champions. I look forward to meeting as many of the new Cohort as possible at our Export Day in July.”
The below businesses have been selected based on their ambition, innovation and the impact that they will have across Commonwealth markets:
Donald Russell Limited
Dura Composites Ltd
Early Bird Ventures Ltd
Extremis Technology Ltd
Giving Tree Ventures Ltd
Goodness Gracious Foods Ltd
Joe and Seph’s
John Reid & Sons
Principle Healthcare International
Redstor Holdings Limited
The Coconut Company
Universal Smart Cards
Winch Energy Limited
Wire Belt Company
Applications for the fourth and final cohort of UK SMEs will open in autumn/winter 2017, however, we are accepting on-going applications as of now: www.commonwealthfirst.org
One hundred outstanding UK SMEs will be selected over three years to become CommonwealthFirst Export Champions.
• Do you want access to 1/3 of the world’s population?
• Is your business growing fast with high export potential?
• Do you have ambitious plans to grow internationally?
• Do you have what it takes to become a Commonwealth Export Champion?
The Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council launched CommonwealthFirst, a three-year training programme aimed at encouraging UK Small Medium Enterprises (SMEs) to export to the Commonwealth. The Council launched the programme at Marlborough House on Tuesday 26th April 2016, the headquarters of the Commonwealth, at a breakfast session addressed by Moya Greene, CEO of Royal Mail plc.