Making your overseas offer more competitive

Making your overseas offer more competitive

UK Export Finance (UKEF), the UK’s export credit agency and part of the Department for International Trade, is helping Scottish companies realise their exporting ambitions with UK government-backed financial support.

Growing overseas business will be key to growth for many firms in Scotland as they look to thrive in a global marketplace. Bank research shows that, on average, firms that start exporting grow by a third in just two years. Exporters can see levels of growth that might not be possible domestically, spread business risk, realise economies of scale not always achievable in their home market, increase revenues and profits, and extend the commercial lifespan of their products and services. Overseas markets also present attractive opportunities for revenue growth and diversification, leading to innovation.

Having the right finance and insurance in place can make you more competitive when undertaking any business activity, and exporting is no different. That’s where we come in. UKEF is a government department with a mission to ensure no viable UK export fails for lack of finance or insurance. Over the past five years, we provided over £14 billion in support for UK exports to businesses across all sectors and all sizes.

We help companies selling overseas find the right finance and insurance, complementing what is available from the private market, to help them win contracts, fulfil them and guarantee payment – even in difficult or new markets.

Last year alone, UKEF provided £28.9 million of support for Scottish exporters, resulting in over £234 million worth of sales. Scottish companies we have supported include Falkirk-based Alexander Dennis, the UK’s leading bus and coach manufacturer. With a turnover of over £500 million a year, international sales are vital to the firm’s success.

When Mexico City’s Metrobus, the city’s transport authority, was opening a new route through Paseo de La Reforma, it turned to Alexander Dennis (ADL) for a one billion Mexican Peso (£41 million) deal for 90 low emission red ‘London’ buses in order to relieve congestion.

However, Metrobus required support in order to finance the contract. UKEF was able to step in and provide a “buyer credit” guarantee on a bank loan to Metrobus, enabling it to access the finance to buy the buses and secure the business for ADL. In addition, thanks to its expanding range of foreign currency support, UKEF was able to provide the support in Mexican pesos, allowing Metrobus to repay in local currency.

UKEF’s support meant ADL was able to secure the business in a rapidly growing market, supporting jobs in ADL’s UK sites in Falkirk and Guildford, as well as throughout the supply chain.

UKEF support can be transformative for Scottish companies like Alexander Dennis, which exports to markets all over the world. We help companies in Scotland get the finance and support they need to realise their exporting ambitions; so, whether you’re exporting for the first time or competing for large overseas contract, UKEF is here to help.

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