The Leeds City Region’s export mentoring network, ExportExchange.co.uk, has helped software firm Panintelligence to open its first office in the US.
Introductions were made at one of its export information events last September, which kick started the Leeds-based software firm's plan to open its first US office in Boston.
Zandra Moore, CEO of Panintelligence, said: “We had been looking at the US for some time, but even trying to work out where to start was a daunting prospect, and it wasn’t until we attended the US market entry event that ExportExchange hosted that things started to take shape.
“The event gave us an invaluable overview of the US market, and highlighted the Boston area as suitable for several key sectors, including software and Fintech where we sit.
“The ExportExchange team was able to make introductions to one of its patrons, HM Consul General Harriet Cross, and to the Consul Kirsten Chambers-Taylor at the event. "They in turn introduced us to their DIT Boston team who gave us extremely useful insights into the market, as well as making further introductions to sector specialists based in Massachusetts in order to sow the seeds for our first market visit."
The event, hosted at Clarion’s Leeds offices, was one of more than a dozen events that have been delivered by the network since it launched in July 2017 to help bring would-be exporters together with experts who have volunteered to share their knowledge and connections with business from the region.
Caroline Wilson of DIT said: “We are starting to see firms that Export Exchange helped in the first year of their existence really reap the benefits of the support and advice given by the patrons and connections.
“Exporting is increasingly being seen as the key way to expand sales opportunities, and recent political uncertainties, together with a weaker pound, have also made UK products and services more competitive, which is also encouraging firms to investigate overseas trade.”
Panintelligence plans to formally open its Boston office in October, having secured space at the Cambridge Innovation Centre in Boston’s financial district.
Ms Moore said: “The US presents a huge opportunity for Panintelligence and although the scale of the challenge and how to how to start to tackle it was daunting, attending the ExportExchange event and being networked smartly was exactly the spark we needed to get the ball rolling.
“You have to do your own legwork, and invest time and resource to get to where we have, but ExportExchange and DIT’s support have been invaluable to date and we’re keen that more Yorkshire firms take advantage of the resource.”
Any business in the Leeds City Region looking to start or grow its exports can register online at www.ExportExchange.co.uk for free peer to peer match making and advice from over 60 patrons who have volunteered to share their advice and experience in overseas markets.