To export or not to export? For SMEs, that is the question

Rachelle Palmer
Posted by Rachelle Palmer
Posted on August 13, 2019 Leave a comment

Exporting overseas is a complex task, especially when considering all the steps that need to be considered prior and during the process. 

With the launch of our Trade Intelligence and Export Planner, businesses will now be able to navigate the cash marketplace much more easily, with the use of Open Banking and personalised APIs that will deliver tailored prompts to the user assisting them with new export markets.

Initially, Open Banking was not deemed as a good fit for the platform, until the Nesta Open Up challenge this year, where we saw a use case to demystify selling abroad with intentions to stimulate growth.

It is no secret that the UK is facing political uncertainty regarding Brexit, which is ultimately affecting the multiple ways we conduct business, and who does business with us. SMEs in particular contribute significantly to the economy and therefore increasing export rates to 40% could reap an additional £141 bn annually in overseas sales. So, what is stopping them? Although it can be argued that there are many factors that can influence a business owners decisions, the main barriers are:

-The lack of access to finance for growth. 

-The perceived risk from the lack of market and counterparty data and time to develop plan.

Where the Trade Intelligence & Export Planner becomes useful is that it saves businesses time due to the APIs, the platform produces a relevant and personalised solution and provides prompts for financial products, as applicable to that company’s cash flow planning scenarios. It also optimises and democratises access to trade planning data and financial services previously only available to corporates. The platform also allows businesses to discover key markets, review risk data and consequently build personalised and engaging plans. 

Currently the major factors prohibiting SMEs from achieving full growth potential includes a lack of international experience, poor analysis of the export market therefore poor visibility of potential, the cost is too high and a lack of data and intelligence, as mentioned earlier.

Why focus on SMEs? They contribute largely to the economy (£620 bn) and also are more likely to introduce innovative products and services when compared to non-exporters. 

Altogether, creating opportunities creates awareness and exposure to international markets, diversifies business risk and provides access to new ideas and innovations. With the declining strength of the Sterling and a new Prime Minister, we remain to see what can be done to help potential exporters on their journey.

To learn more about the Cash Planner click here. Akoni helps businesses make the most of their cash. Register free for access to market-leading interest rate accounts, cash planning tools and tips at and follow us on Twitter 

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