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New support announced to help 7,000 businesses export online

Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced plans for a new programme to help 7,000 small and medium sized business (SMEs) to attract overseas customers through the internet.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

New support announced to help 7,000 businesses export online

Business Secretary Vince Cable has announced plans for a new programme to help 7,000 small and medium sized business (SMEs) to attract overseas customers through the internet.

Over the next two years, UK Trade and Investment’s 'Grow Online, Expand Worldwide' programme will provide training and advice to SMEs as well as funding to help improve their web capability. In addition, the UK will have an approved global network of business-to-business support with SMEs being able to benefit from 40 approved support networks in UKTI's top high growth markets such as China, India and the United Arab Emirates by the end of 2014.

Support offered through the campaign will include awareness raising sessions, a webinar campaign and international web workshops for 4,000 aspiring web exporters as well as e-commerce masterclasses for 1,200 web export ready businesses.

In addition 1,500 web exporters will be offered bespoke one-to-one advice from experts, tailored website reviews and action planning to access web exporter vouchers, with up to £3,000 matched funding. The programme will also help 600 companies from the UK retail sector to sell online by helping them to list their products on websites such as Alibaba in China and Tejuri in the Gulf.

Commenting on the initiative, British Retail Consortium director general Helen Dickinson said: “British retailers, large and small, are in a strong position to seize the opportunity the web based revolution has brought. Even the smallest retailers have a massive opportunity to expand their businesses through exporting to new markets. Its new programmes like ‘Grow Online, Expand Worldwide’, and support from the BRC and UKTI, that will help them achieve this."

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