Measures to help businesses recover from the coronavirus crisis include support for developing online retail channels in the UK and international markets. Export minister Graham Stuart MP announced the government’s latest ‘Bounce Back’ plans to the digital audience of Autumn Fair @Home last week. These include a new Consumer and Retail Export Academy, with digital resources, webinars and regional coaching.
The plans reflect the massive expansion of online retail over the past decade and its acceleration this year.
Talking to Autumn Fair @Home attendees, Graham said: “This package of support will give businesses the helping hand they need to adapt their methods and thrive in the future.” He recognised that: “The retail industry is a key pillar of the UK economy.”
Graham also outlined long-term support for the retail sector with potential export opportunities arising from trade deals being negotiated with the US, Japan, New Zealand and Australia.
Julie Driscoll, UK regional director for Hyve Group (organiser of Autumn Fair and Spring Fair) commented: “We are thrilled to be working in collaboration with the UK Government and the Department for Trade on their plans to reinvigorate the UK retail industry.”
BHETA’s (British Home Enhancement Trade Association) chief operating officer Will Jones added: “Following the Covid-19 outbreak, it is now essential that suppliers and retailer have strong e-commerce sales channel. DIT’s support to help companies develop an e-commerce strategy will be immensely valuable to businesses as they begin and continue to trade overseas.”
Initiatives to boost digital and e-commerce platforms include the International Clicks Fast Track Initiative. New DIT partnerships with business-to-business marketplaces will increase the routes to market following store closures due to Covid-19. Recently launched digital online marketplace Retaissance is one of the first UK-based marketplaces in the new International Clicks Fast Track Initiative.
The government also intends to showcase ‘Brand Britain’ at global events, such as Expo 2020 Dubai, Tokyo Olympics and the Commonwealth Games, and enable UK companies to use GREAT branding to attract international attention. Hyve Group’s trade shows (including Spring Fair and Autumn Fair) will also be a platform to reach overseas buyers.
Top: Export minister Graham Stuart set out the Bounce Back measures during last week’s Autumn Fair @Home programme of events.