A new programme has been launched by the UK government to help British companies to make the most of opportunities available for them to do business overseas.
Dubbed Exporting is GREAT, the UK Trade & Investment-backed scheme is set to run for five years and will present real-time export opportunities that businesses can apply for online, all as part of a wider effort to get 100,000 additional companies exporting by 2020.
The international sales leads will span a range of media outlets and digital channels and are estimated to have a total value exceeding £300 million, with around 1,000 more set to come online each month.
As part of the scheme, businesses will also be provided with advice and expertise at each step on the exporting process - from initial interest to selling in market - including a year-long roadshow that will travel the length of the UK to offer face-to-face assistance to potential exporters.
Current evidence suggests that a mistaken belief that there is no market for their product overseas represents a significant barrier to businesses exporting, with recent government-commissioned research from TNS showing that across all non-exporters, more than 70 per cent believe that their product or service is in some way not suitable for export.
Lord Francis Maude, the UK's minister for trade and investment, said: "I see first-hand the demand that exists for UK products and services but many companies don't realise this demand exists. We are confident that through this campaign, by raising awareness of and providing access to these opportunities, together with giving companies the practical advice and guidance they need, we will inspire and support thousands of new companies in an exciting new venture of selling overseas."