Business in Europe – why it’s good to be ‘Made in England’
Grev Lushington, founder of Quantock Clothing, has just returned from the Enterprise Nation Go Global event in Berlin, along with 25 UK fashion and design businesses looking to break into Europe. His small firm sources and sells ‘Made in England menswear’ online in the UK and is keen to move into foreign markets, beginning with Germany. Here’s what he had to say about how the event helped his business.
Enterprise Nation Go Global Berlin
“Go Global was a great opportunity for us. We made lots of very useful connections that will help us to expand our business into Europe, starting with Germany. We had the chance to display our products and get some direct feedback on local markets. I hadn’t known what to expect but it was a really well organised event and we’ve learned a lot.
“We had a stall to show off our wares but there were also seminars and presentations, as well as plenty of opportunity to mingle and chat with other businesses and potential clients. The whole thing has given us a very good flavour of the German market.”
Connections and business partners
“We met with a few German retailers while we were there. They were interested in our products, and what we were doing, especially the style and the quality, so we’ll be following up with them. We had some great feedback on our new line of jeans in particular.
“It was also great to meet with British brands out there. We were able to share ideas and experiences which was fantastic. I’ve now got a few more ideas for the ‘Look Book’ we’ve been putting together and which we’ll definitely be bringing for our next trip.
“Meeting with PayPal at their headquarters in Berlin was brilliant too. We’ve had it on our UK site for a while but I hadn’t realised there were so many improvements that we could do today, built on their learnings, that would improve our ability to sell in overseas markets.”
Business in Europe
“We made a very promising connection with Webinterpret. They’ll translate our website into German and we only pay them based on our commission rate per sale. It’s a sort of pay-as-you-go software service that enables us to get our website available to the German market very quickly, with very low upfront cost, and they get to share in our revenue stream as we hopefully grow – I think it’s a fantastic opportunity and a game changer for us.
“We also spoke to UPS and they say they’re now able to support global free returns. That’s a very important milestone for us. We pay for the returns of course, but it’s what people will expect when they buy from us online.”
Made in England
“People were also very supportive of our ‘Made in England’ branding, which was encouraging. The British brand is easy to identify with – you don’t have to explain who we are but making in England is important to me – it was a badge of honour seen on many products in previous times.
And whenever I travel abroad, people refer to me as being English and living in England – I rarely hear the phrase “you’re from Britain” or “you’re British”. That links back to being able to sell globally – I believe the ‘Made in England’ tagline is stronger internationally than ‘Made in UK’.”
Quantock Clothing was launched by Grev Lushington and his partners in Rugby, Warwickshire in 2014 and focuses on providing Made In England menswear.
Enterprise Nation launched in 2005 and has since helped thousands of people start and grow their businesses. Led by founder Emma Jones MBE, it’s also a leading campaigning voice for small business with the Government.
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