Today sees the launch of Export Cornwall – a new business network designed to help businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly trade internationally.
The initiative is being launched at an event at the Headland Hotel in Newquay, which will be attended by more than 100 local businesses.
Export Cornwall is backed by the £2 million UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) Globalisation Project, which has received European Regional Development Fund investment through the Convergence Programme for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.
“Cornish businesses now have the toolkit they need to broaden their horizons and grow their business through export”
Carleen Kelemen, director of the Convergence Partnership Office for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, who is chairing the launch event, said: “Export Cornwall paves the way for significant business growth in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly. This is the first time there has been such intensive investment focussed on helping Cornish businesses trade overseas. The ERDF Convergence investment will help businesses discover how to build profitable international business.”
Export Cornwall is designed especially for small and medium sized businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly and for most businesses, membership is free. Export Cornwall is driven by an advisory team of leading local exporters, including Somar International, Wes Ltd and MJ Medical.
The focal point of the network is a new interactive website, which will be previewed at the event. This site will enable an online community where businesses can seek advice from within the Cornish business community as well as from international trade advisors from UKTI.
Export Cornwall also offers free workshops and a training programme -Roadmap to Export – to help businesses at every level develop the skills they need to maximise exports.
David Bone, MD of Somar International, who chairs the advisory team, said: “Export Cornwall pulls together all the information and support a small business needs to build business overseas. Through this unique combination of services, Cornish businesses now have the toolkit they need to broaden their horizons and grow their business through export.”
Robin Barnett, MD of UKTI’s Business Group, who is spending today and tomorrow visiting local UKTI customers, added: “The Export Cornwall network will help set businesses in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly firmly on the path to profitable overseas trade. In turn, this will lead to higher quality jobs and help boost prosperity in the county.”