Internationalisation Fund for Businesses in England: All you need to know

If you are a startup business located in England and have your sights set on expanding to the Asia Pacific region in 2021, you have to apply for this grant, called the Internationalisation Fund, right now! This grant has been running since December 2020 and will end in early 2023.

In this article, we will be explaining why you should consider incorporating and expanding your business into this part of the world and explain more about why this grant will help you do it with much ease.

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What is the Internationalisation Funding about?

This grant is set up by the Department of International Trade (DIT) to help Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in England to expand into the international market. It is a co-investment grant that seeks to alleviate the financial burdens of SMEs and help them support their business operations.

The grant ranges between £1,000 and £9,000 and is available throughout England except for Cornwall and Isles of Scilly.

It is worth noting that this grant is a co-investment. This means that your business is still required to fork out 40 or 50% of the total cost.

Who is the Department for International Trade (DIT)?

The Department for International Trade (DIT) of the United Kingdom (UK) Government is a ministerial department responsible for international trade between the UK and the rest of the world.

The internationalisation fund is currently spearheaded by DIT through their budget and from the European Regional Development Funding (ERDF). The ERDF is one of the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) that focuses on generating smart, sustainable, and inclusive growth in the UK.

Also read: Introducing Greenhouse's Ultimate Guide to International Business Expansion

Can my business receive the internationlisation funding?

Your business is eligible to receive the grant if they fall within these criteria:

  • Your company is based in England
  • Your company is a Small and Medium-sized Enterprise (SME) with up to 250 employees
  • Owned by an enterprise that is not an SME and owns no more than 25% of the business
  • Annual turnover does not exceed €50 million or annual balance sheet does not exceed €43 million

The DIT is also focused on companies that are value-adding to the economy and is currently keen on funding SMEs that are high-growth potential (HGP). These kinds of companies have the following characteristics:

  1. Open to suitability
  2. High international potential
  3. Company has new products or services for the new international market

How can the grant be used?

The grant can be used to support areas including (but not exclusively limited to):

  • Market research
  • Trade fairs (where no TAP funding is available)
  • IP (intellectual property) advice
  • Independent market visits
  • Translation services
  • Consultancy and other international commercial services
  • International social media/SEO

How does my business apply for DIT Internationalisation Funding?

Step one: Contact the DIT’s Regional Network.

Step two: Discuss your business plans with an adviser at the DIT’s Regional Network.

Step three: Settle and agree on an export action plan with the adviser.

Step four: If the DIT finds your business suitable for their support, the DIT adviser will provide further application details on how to proceed with the application for the fund.

Do note that the rules of the Internationalisation Fund may be subjected to changes as the program unfolds. Therefore, please ensure you check on the latest details before applying.

Why expand into the Asia Pacific region?

There are many reasons why your business should go international and expand into this region. Here are 3 reasons why you do not want to miss out on the opportunities here.

#1 Population size

Asia is home to over 4.6 billion people and with this large population, comes a large consumer market. Looking at Indonesia alone, there are already 276 million people. This is extremely attractive when selling a product or service as you’re able to make sales to a huge demographic. Compared to just England’s population of about 68 million people, Asia’s demographics definitely exceeds it drastically and the opportunities are much more!

Asia’s business startup scene is booming, especially the tech startups. We see countries like Singapore and Vietnam chasing to be the next Silicon Valley of Asia. Moreover, with the global situation since 2019, many other industries like e-commerce, fintech, and delivery services are being heavily invested in.

It is definitely one of the hottest places for innovation today!

Do also check out our recent article on Business Opportunities and Challenges in Southeast Asian Markets and discover where your business in England can expand into!

#3 Business-friendly environment for foreign businesses

Asia is fond of foreign investors and entrepreneurs wanting to expand their business here.

Countries like Singapore, Malaysia, and Thailand are among the top 25 countries on the World Bank’s Ease of Doing Business Index 2020. Business processes in these countries are rather straightforward and do not take long for you to incorporate your company. Some of these countries like Hong Kong also offer low taxation, almost free port trade, and well established international financial market.

As such, the Asia Pacific region is a promising and exciting market to expand and bring your products or service international.

If you have any questions regarding how the Internationalisation Fund can help in the expansion of your business in this article, do feel free to reach out to us here. We will be more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

If you are a startup business in England interested in expanding your business internationally but are still unsure about how to go about doing it, we also recommend you to read through our series of articles on the topic of how startups expand globally, they will bring you through the process of building your market hypothesis all the way to recruiting your team overseas.

Greenhouse is a marketplace for your business to connect with market entry consultants in your target markets.

We’ll connect you with experienced service providers on the ground who can help answer your questions about doing business in Southeast Asia.

This article is not intended to and does not constitute legal or tax advice, recommendations, mediation, or counseling under any circumstance. This webpage and your use thereof does not create an attorney-client relationship with Greenhouse or our service providers in Indonesia. The article solely represents the thoughts of the author and is neither endorsed by nor does it necessarily reflect Greenhouse’s belief. Greenhouse does not warrant or guarantee the accurateness, completeness, adequacy, or currency of the information in the webpage. You should seek the advice of a competent attorney or accountant licensed to practice in your jurisdiction for advice on your particular problem.

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