“Our services are aimed at a wide range of companies” Paula Twinn comments, “from those just starting to look at exports and international partnerships without the resources in house to do it themselves, to more experienced exporters who are moving into new markets and looking for advice and introductions, and those who have a one off problem or question that they need help with.”
Ben Salisbury adds, “We have a wide network of contacts around the world, relationships which we’ve developed over the last ten years or so, it seemed such a waste to just lose this with the closure of IATC. The need for support doesn’t just disappear because the funding is removed. Through IATC we’ve helped more than 5,000 companies in the agri-technology sector, which has been fantastic, but with numbers like that the level of support you can provide is limited. As VTS we hope to be able to work a bit more closely with some of these, to provide an individually tailored package of support to each company we work with - to really understand their products or services and the markets they want to build. We want these companies to think of us as their virtual export department.”
As well as consultancy services, VTS is also in discussion with other partners about business to business events. Georgina Varney was IATC’s UK Events Project Co-ordinator and knows just how effective these types of activities can be.
“We want to continue to host delegations of international visitors to the UK, and take them on technical tours to showcase the UK’s expertise. These, along with ‘meet the buyer’ events, were always very popular and successful – it’s a fantastic way for UK companies to meet a large number and wide range of potential international partners or buyers without the cost and time of a trip overseas. We will be encouraging the British Embassy Commercial Staff to visit the UK as well, and meeting them is a great first step for any company thinking about moving into a new overseas market.”
Vine Tree Solutions launched on 1st April 2011, more information and contact details can be found on the website, www.vinetreesolutions.co.uk.