We are pleased to officially announce our wonderful new partnership with Norway’s UT Project (UT Prosjektet). As of June this year, we have started this new journey together to provide the tools and talent required for Norwegian companies to expand their software services here into the UK.
“We’re thrilled to announce our partnership with Norway’s UT Project. Today, the UT Project in collaboration with Innovation Norway is propelling the start-up scene in the Norwegian market, helping businesses to grow and giving them the right advice and investment support to scale. Together we offer those businesses a solid foundation in establishing themselves at home and a proven springboard into the UK market. Our close physical location makes it easy to apply the very hands on approach we both take with the scale-ups we work with, supporting them in pushing their business to reach its growth objectives.”
– Emily Chadwick, CEO, Marketing Logic
WHAT IS UT?
Norway’s UT Project is a twelve month dedicated sales and marketing project that aims to assist companies scale internationally. This includes increasing their revenues, international recognition, obtaining new clients and expanding their network. It consists of C-level coaching, connecting with new contacts and securing meetings with decision makers to truly aid in accelerated growth. There are four seminars during the twelve-month period including one in London, as well as sector-specific UT Conferences in Norway throughout the year. During these, companies gain access to experienced international commercial directors and senior leaders who have extensive knowledge in their respective fields so that they have the tools and information to make the best of their respective businesses.
The focus is on companies who possess the talent and capacity to deliver sales, marketing and global expansion. Furthermore, the UT is dedicated to helping companies achieve results both during the engagement period and beyond. Several core partners support the project including Innovation Norway and Sparebank 1 SMN, in addition to a number of other partners both domestic and international. Since its inception in 2005, over 70 companies have participated in the project, with some participating over two years to go on to huge success.
We are the UK’s leading growth scaler for B2B Technology companies looking to launch or accelerate their business quickly, successfully and cost-effectively. Our team of Central London professionals work alongside existing businesses, bringing local scale across sales, marketing, setup and support. This allows your business to expand into the UK while reducing risk, maximising return on investment and accelerating your time to market. It is our privilege to now offer this end-to-end experience to Norwegian companies looking to scale into the UK via our partnership with the UT Project.
With our proven global success, we have excelled at scaling several companies for example:
- We took a German SaaS vendor from no UK clients, no physical presence, no references, to over £3 million in revenue in 3 years. We secured blue-chip clients & helped lock in VC investment.
- Our proven end-to-end methodology enabled a retail platform from New York to turn a failed UK launch into an outstanding program that achieved 114% of sales targets in the first 90 days.
- As part of a strategic engagement, an e-commerce platform with 24 months of flat growth was reinvented to deliver 96% year-on-year revenue growth.
“The thorough market analysis and insight Marketing Logic provided has proven really valuable to our development as a business and the crafting of our go-to-market strategy. With their help our plans to enter the UK market and compete with the current software landscape are informed, strategically sound and in line with our general roadmap.”
– Magnus Hoem Slørdal, CEO, Headshed – A UT Project Company
Looking ahead, Marketing Logic and the UT Project are already exploring innovative ways to accelerate Norwegian technology companies time to market in the UK. Additionally, we are also exploring new ways to collaborate on using the UK as proving ground for companies wanting to quickly access the US and how to cost effectively help UK companies access the Norwegian and other Nordic markets. Exciting times ahead.
With Brexit talks now officially underway, there can be no denying the increase in uncertainty that’s accompanying the whole process. After a first rollercoaster following the vote on 23rd of June 2016, there’s been some challenging rhetoric from across the channel. However, since Theresa May’s Lancaster House Brexit Speech, we have seen a new direction of travel. Increasing pragmatism seems to now be the trend. With that firmly in mind, we take a look at the potential opportunities and challenges of Brexit and how they will impact new businesses looking to enter the UK market.
What do we know so far about the challenges of Brexit? Since the budget revelations in March, it’s clear that the situation is quite the opposite of the doom and gloom about which most were worried. Britain’s growth in 2016 was second only to Germany, growing faster than the United States, Japan and France as well as employment at a record high with over 2.7 million more people in work than in 2010. As such, the OBR and OECD have upgraded forecasts for growth this year from 1.4% to 2%. Though the 2018 forecast will slow to 1.6%, it will subsequently pick up to 1.7%, then 1.9% before returning to 2% in 2021. Inflation is being forecasted at 2.4% in 2017, then 2.3% the next year and 2% in 2019. Good news for consumers as costs will not be rising faster than their paychecks.
The UK’s longer-term fiscal outlook has demographic trends continuing to influence public finances. The retirement of the ‘baby boomer’ cohort along with an ever increasing life expectancy will see significant increases in spending in age-related areas such as health, long-term care and an increased state pension. But revenues will be left relatively stable therefore we can expect to see increasing public sector development. So what does this mean to the new market entrant? As one of the challenges of Brexit to address, increasing and improving productivity is the key to meeting the needs of an ageing population.
BUILDING THE NEW ECONOMY
A crucial factor in driving the UK into the future securely and sustainably will be the National Productivity Investment Fund with a grand total of £23 billion. Within this fund are the following critical projects that will substantially improve the UK’s productivity infrastructure.
- £740 million by 2020-21 into digital infrastructure
- 5G Innovation Network – 1st Phase £16 million
- Full-fibre broadband investment starting 2017 – £200 million
- £1.1 billion for local transport
- £220 million to address road network punch point
- £4.7 billion for Research & Development
- Talent Funding of approximately £250 million
- Global research talent investment of £100 million
- Greater devolved powers to general local assemblies and city deals
ECONOMIC SPREAD OF ACTIVITY ACROSS THE UK
POSITIVE SENTIMENT REGARDS UK’s POST BREXIT FUTURE
OPPORTUNITIES & CHALLENGES OF BREXIT
There is still a complex unwinding ahead and plenty of work yet to be done. With over 40 years of EU law embedded into UK law, we have to undertake ‘The Great Repeal Bill’ which will work to begin dissolving the EU regulations, but there will still be plenty of directives that are within current legislation. One of the other challenges of Brexit is that we are still yet to comprehend the impact it will have on borders especially the Ireland/Northern Ireland border. There is massive potential for new trade deals, but these can only be undertaken once Brexit is complete, however, working groups have been established with the US, Australia, China and India.
There are some certainties though that are offering certainty in the health and wealth of the future. The UK still has the lowest corporation tax rates in the G20 currently projected to be 17% by 2020. We have business friendly labour laws and no withholding taxes on profit distributions as well as a massive tax treaty network. We currently have the lowest social security costs in the EU and with our extended network of Commonwealth countries are open for business. These offer alternative opportunities for labour let alone the budding US/UK trade deal on the horizon; the UK is indeed growing in its reputation as a great place to do business.
“Brexit isn’t about making the best of a bad
job. It is about seizing the huge and exciting
opportunities that will flow from a new place
for Britain in the world. There will be new
freedoms, new opportunities, new horizons
for this great country.”
– David Davis
Let’s assume for discussion’s sake that the outcome is the worst case scenario. The UK leaves the EU customs union, which means there will be no preferential trading status granted by the EU upon exit. An extremely unlikely outcome but worth considering all the same.
- Non-tariff barriers (e.g. filing of export/import declarations) will increase cost and complexity.
- Imports from EU and others alike will be subjected to customs duties, therefore, current duty rates will likely remain unchanged.
- EU’s customs duties, however, will not become applicable to imports from the UK, same as from non-EU countries today.
- No access to EU’s 34 trade agreements; stop for duty relief on trade with 53 third country jurisdictions.
- UK will almost certainly recreate EU’s AEO and customs relief schemes.
- UK will be accepted as a World Trade Organization member in its own right by all WTO members.
If all this were to unfold, the key points for UK businesses to consider commercially will be the increased prices and reduced margins to mitigate increased cost for imports/exports, the need for changing of contracts for EU-27 suppliers and customers and perhaps an increased scrutiny from HMRC. There will also be considerations needed logistically such as, moving UK processing/warehousing operations to the EU or even maintaining separate supply chains. Some may even consider changing suppliers or logistics service providers to provide support to an alternative model. Along with all that, there are IT considerations that a business will need to consider. Will the commercial invoice format require changes? Will new IT include links to CHIEF etc? Will there be sufficient lead times for implementing required changes to order management systems? These are all key considerations that must be deliberated.
Plan now for the inevitable future.
Review your supply chain:
• Customs Duty costs for export to EU
• Authorised Economic Operator – reduce impact of friction
• VAT registrations across EU maybe needed
Corporate and Group matters:
• Parent-subsidiary directive protections will go for UK companies in EU groups
• Transfer pricing in light of currency devaluation
• Work permits for EU operating
So, there is certainly much to bear in mind with regards to the potential challenges of Brexit but one thing is absolutely certain. The UK is very much still open for business. Though there will be an adaptive phase whereby businesses evolve accordingly, the outcomes are far from grim. For a further, more in-depth Brexit planning guide, download this fantastic pdf from our friends over at BDO, Our deepest thanks to Stuart Lisle from BDO for the insightful presentation that fuelled this article.
With a track record of bringing leading Marketing Technologies to the UK, we launched this week the UK’s first dedicated end-to-end Scale-Up service for Marketing Technology businesses.
Recognising London’s place as a vibrant hot-spot for tech start-ups, particularly in the marketing space, the new service aims to grow technology businesses and deliver them value far more rapidly than they could do independently.
“We always hear the same story from tech entrepreneurs. They have matured their software products, having grown organically, but need help in making that step-change in scale. The pain of hiring entire marketing, sales and services teams can be too much, especially if it’s the first time they have tried to do it.”
said Emily Chadwick, CEO of Marketing Logic.
“There are a wealth of fresh and hungry businesses out there that need mature growth mechanisms to scale their sales and successfully setup and manage their customers. We are committed to helping these teams to do this while giving them the headroom to manage the pressure of juggling their profile and responsibilities as London entrepreneurs.
Ex ad-agency Director and Marketing Logic’s President Charles Kirchner adds.
“Our expertise and success in bringing businesses to the UK and expanding them, means that we can plug in to tech companies and have them represented in the UK as an established, multi-team business almost overnight”.
Our service offering differs from most business builders by offering an end-to-end service from initial market validation through to selling SaaS platforms, setting up the customers, supporting users and account managing them to make sure they have a single positive experience with the vendors’ solutions, managed by skilled resources.
We’re just a month out from the Brexit referendum. Following a market shock and a Mexican wave of raised eyebrows undulating across the globe, some exciting patterns are starting to surface from the perspective of a tech business aiming for growth. These are still early days, but we think there are reasons to be positive.
Welcoming new business to Britain
Britain is Open for Business. As the dust settles from the explosive result of the EU vote, that’s possibly the only consistent message heard clearly from all sides. The Conservative government have created an entire new department for international trade, and the Labour Mayor of London is campaigning at pace to attract new businesses into the Capital with his #LondonIsOpen campaign.
The new Chancellor, Philip Hammond – on his recent trade-focused trip to China – raised expectations for a cut in corporation tax and even VAT, as a move to encourage businesses into a Britain positioned as throwing off the shackles of trading as a block of countries bound together by European red tape.
If he decided to follow the post-referendum plans of his cautious predecessor in lowering the rates from 20% to 15%, as reported by the BBC that would give the UK the lowest corporation tax of any major economy.
Keeping the business here
So the UK is attracting business. But won’t Europe see Brexit as an opportunity to coax companies across the Channel? Frankly it doesn’t look like it.
We aren’t hearing major political voices in Berlin or Paris reaching out, and as Fortune noted, it’s those same core EU countries that have been leading the crackdown on the big tech firms such as Google over their tax affairs.
London as a centre of gravity for marketing tech
Which brings us to the businesses we partner with – technology firms specialising in marketing and looking to scale. We think the signs are strong.
Technology is at the forefront of the start-up world, and of businesses entering the UK market. Failure rates among start-ups are relatively low for tech businesses, and at the other end of the scale, the UK dominates the market within the European continent. Over 1/3 of Europe’s so-called ‘Unicorns’ (pre-IPO tech firms worth over $1bn) originate in the UK – more than any other country.
And marketing and advertising has long been at home in London as a European and global hub, with both agency and media expertise and infrastructure unrivalled outside of New York, severely unlikely to be overtaken.
On this Venn diagram of two of London’s biggest business strengths for successful incoming businesses, the sweet-spot in the overlap is ad / marketing technology.
So if the UK is about to make a push to attract new business, we’re hopeful we’ll see marketing tech businesses right at the front of the orderly British queue.
Our thoughts exactly! Check out this new campaign from the office of the Mayor of London.