Market internationalization isn’t exclusively for big companies. Small- and medium-sized companies have also become ambassadors of our culture and drivers of the economy.
Just 50 years ago, most entrepreneurs didn’t even consider the possibility of entering the international market; the world was divided in isolated blocks, which also conditioned ideas. In this day and age, however, tendencies such as the growing interdependence between countries and the surprising technological advancements in the field of communication set up an environment where the local and the global have become inseparable in every way.
In order to be a part of this international scenario, it is necessary for entrepreneurs to extend their vision and to recognize the need to rearrange their strategies within this new economic model. In other words, they need to think big, get out of their comfort zones, and approach other markets.
What is internationalization?
Let’s start by clarifying something that is very basic: exporting is not the same thing as internationalizing. The fact that a product or service is sold outside the country doesn’t guarantee the presence of the company in the target market, nor the cultural adaptation of its products. True, internationalization requires companies to conduct operations that enable the establishment of stable links between the company and its clients. Internationalization doesn’t mean imposing a local business scheme beyond its borders, it means adapting to the demands of each national market. There can’t be internationalization without a constant search for efficiency, which is meant to provide the company with an adequate structure to compete in new markets.
This can be a real challenge, but it is also the only chance of survival for many companies. Luckily, global vision allows for the transfer of knowledge and resources that facilitate this adaptation process. In the long term, the small- and medium-sized companies that invest have a much higher success rate than the ones that don’t. The reason for this is that the latter increase their productivity indexes to become more competitive.
Opportunities in a silver platter
The internationalization of Mexican companies is a reality available to anyone. Mexico is not only the country with the most commercial treaties in the world, but is has also developed multiple programs that look to support the internationalization of the small- and medium- sized companies and to aid them according to their own capacities.
In 2013, Mexico achieved a new record in investments around the world, having invested more than 25,500 million dollars. The U.S. is Mexico’s main commercial ally (89 per cent of Mexican exports are to the U.S. and Canada), nonetheless, entrepreneurs are starting to see the European Union as an attractive possibility, since this community has over 455 million potential consumers!
With the goal of supporting small- and medium- sized companies that are looking to improve their competitiveness through specialized technical consulting and assistance that allows them to enter the European markets, Mexico and the European Union have created the Competitiveness and Innovation Program Mexico-E.U. (PROCEI), which has yielded excellent results.
Global vision is trending
The Mexican fashion sector plays a leading role in the national economy and it is progressively opening paths in international markets. The clothing industry alone is integrated by 20 thousand companies, which represents 10 per cent of the manufacturing GDP, from which 90 per cent are small- and medium- sized companies.
Mexico has one of the richest cultures in the world, and it is enough to look at ourselves from the eyes of the world for all those things that we consider “ordinary” to become trends. It is not surprising that out country has been a source of inspiration to renowned designers such as Jean Paul Gaultier, Yves Saint Laurent, Miuccia Pradda, and Christian Louboutin, who have displayed indigenous elements in their designs.
Due to the creativity that characterizes Mexican fashion, it has become increasingly accepted abroad, and events like Intermoda serve as a platfor to launch young Mexican designers internationally. The potential of this industry in our country and abroad is endless.
The size of your company doesn’t matter, ambition and discipline can help you discover new borders. Dare to look at the world with fresh eyes, the tools you need to consolidate your company are at your reach.