Seminar on the Challenges of Entering International Markets

In many industries, the potential to grow sales in the Norwegian market is limited purely by its size. Because of this, it is not uncommon for Norwegian companies to look to international markets when searching for opportunities to increase sales. However, for many businesses, developing an international sales strategy may seem like an insurmountable task.

Norwegian Smart Care Cluster, in cooperation with Innovasjon Norge, recently offered a 2-hour seminar that provided attendees with information about internationalization into European markets.

Kjell Arne Niellsen from Innovasjon Norge Poland shared insight into the complexities involved in entering international markets. Using examples from the Polish healthcare sector, Kjell Arne explained that because of the size and expected growth of the market, as well as its underdeveloped competitive environment, Poland is an attractive option for companies looking to expand their sales into the European market. He also offered insight into some of the market’s driving forces including industry trends, the cultural environment, and government regulations.

Bente Rød Eide and Hans Kristian Torske from Innovasjon Norge Rogaland explained the ways in which their organization can assist companies before and during the process of internationalization. Innovasjon Norge offers its members an array of services including company profiling, financing, and consultancy. As well as a dedicated ‘export center’ in Norway, Innovasjon Norge has satellite offices throughout the world. Hans Kristian illustrated a four-phase strategy companies can implement to ensure successful entry into foreign markets. He explained that, first and foremost, companies should conduct research into viable market alternatives to get a better idea of the many aspects involved into entering each market.

Those in attendance included members of the Norwegian Smart Care Cluster and members of Validé’s health and welfare incubator.

Nina Rødsmoen, a budding entrepreneur in the healthcare equipment industry and member of the Norwegian Smart Care Cluster, wasn’t sure if she would get much out of the seminar, but opted to attend anyhow. Her initial thought was that her knowledge of business development was not advanced enough to allow her to understand the concepts that would be presented.

To her surprise, Nina was able to absorb a lot of important information that she believes can help her now as well as in the future. She was surprised to learn that she may have more success in launching her product in countries like Poland than in countries such as England and Germany. As a result of what she learned, Nina says that she will do more research into countries/markets that were not originally on her short-list.

For more information, see Innovasjon Norge’s export manual ‘Eksporthåndboken’ (in Norwegian)

Author: Simen Malmin

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