British cycling firms eye Dutch market

Kieran Howells
British cycling firms eye Dutch market

British cycling firms are set to discover the Dutch market with the help of British retail giant John Lewis’ top buyer.

The firm’s head of homeware and accessories, Anna Rigby, will join a trade mission aimed at helping even the smallest firms find high-value customers in the competitive Dutch market. The trade mission, which is being organised by small business support group Enterprise Nation, will take 35 British-based designers and makers to Amsterdam on September 22. 

It is the third trade mission the firm has run this year, as part of its ongoing Go Global campaign, and is part funded and supported by private sector sponsors. A two-day cycling and homeware-focused mission is a collaboration between Enterprise Nation, professional services firm KPMG, high street bank HSBC, and international delivery firm UPS.

Emma Jones said: “Anna’s an expert and her presence on the trip will give small firms the help they need to navigate the world of buying step-by-step. Anna has seen hundreds of firms pitch their products and knows the ingredients you need to conquer the market. There are more cycles than residents in Amsterdam – 881, 000 - and 15,000 of them are fished out the canals every year (the cycles, not the people). It’s the perfect place to sell cycling and homewares products and this is the perfect mission to explore the commercial proposition it represents for British designers and manufacturers.”

The mission will cover everything first-time exporters need to know, including Dutch tax law, Dutch consumer tastes and buying habits, how to ship, and fund expansion. It will also deliver buyers from department store De Bijenkorf - the “Selfridges” of Amsterdam - where John Lewis has a store-in-store.

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There will be a visit to the newly-opened Dutch branch of Makerversity and to the MADE.COM showroom to understand how these brands are realising success in the Dutch market, and a pop-up shop where mission go-ers will sell their wares direct to shoppers and get immediate feedback. 

For more details go to www.enterprisenation.com/goglobal

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