Access to High-Quality Talent and Suppliers Is Driving Small-to-Medium-Sized Businesses to Expand Across Borders
SAN FRANCISCO, CA–(Marketwired – Aug 26, 2016) – USForex (a member of OFX Group), one of the world’s leading foreign exchange companies, today announced the release of its SMB Confidence Indicator.
Representing more than two-thirds of net new jobs in the private sector, small-to-medium-sized businesses (SMBs) are a huge part of the U.S. economy. Together with survey partner Researchscape, USForex surveyed more than 300 U.S. SMBs over the course of two weeks to understand market sentiment and confidence around international expansion.
Results indicate that a vast majority of SMBs (96 percent) are confident in conducting business abroad and see going global as a way to access high-quality employees and suppliers, as well as a key stepping stone to continued growth.
This confidence is slightly higher compared to the June index provided by the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), which showed that small business optimism had risen to nearly 94 percent. But events such as the upcoming U.S. election and threat of global terrorism are giving some respondents cause for concern when it comes to global expansion.
“Going global is no longer an option for successful small and medium businesses — it’s a strategic imperative,” said Karin Visnick, head of North America, USForex. “U.S. businesses are overwhelmingly optimistic when it comes to their global aspirations, with new technology and services putting global talent, suppliers and markets within reach of businesses that would have never thought to look beyond U.S. borders just a few years ago.”
SMBs Bullish On Global Economy…
- Most businesses (96 percent) are confident conducting business overseas
- More than half of respondents, 58 percent, already have international customers, and 50 percent have suppliers or vendors outside of the U.S.
- Only 19 percent of U.S. SMBs surveyed have no international business today
- Quality trumps cost: U.S. SMBs are looking offshore for access to higher quality suppliers or vendors (43 percent) and higher quality talent (42 percent), as opposed to cheaper suppliers or vendors (41 percent) and cheaper talent (28 percent)
…But Need to Learn Local Market Conditions
When asked to rank the challenges SMBs face when doing business overseas, executives list:
- International market conditions
- Lack of understanding of local best practices
- Fees charged to sell overseas
- Exchange rates affecting pay rate for overseas talent
- Customer service/language barriers
The top three international regions SMBs cite as being difficult to break into are:
- Asia (37 percent)
- The EU (30 percent)
- Latin America (24 percent)
Looking forward to the next year, nearly three quarters (72 percent) of SMB executives plan to grow their international customer base, while more than half (52 percent) are expecting to take on new suppliers or vendors abroad.
“It’s clear that SMBs are optimistic and eager to expand their business across U.S. borders, though slightly cautious about local business conditions and the impact of major global events,” said David Nicholls, head of payment solutions, USForex. “Among our own customers, we’re experiencing an increasing number of businesses that are seeking the proper tools and guidance they need to navigate the changing global business landscape and ultimately make their international expansion a successful one.”
To download the complete USForex SMB Confidence Indicator report, please visit: http://bit.ly/2bygXhz
Methodology: The USForex SMB Confidence Indicator was a survey of 330 SMB owners or decision makers, conducted over the course of two weeks by Researchscape, on behalf of USForex, a provider of cross border currency exchange for businesses and consumers.
USForex is becoming OFX. OFX gives consumers and businesses a smarter, online and mobile alternative to existing currency exchange services. Since its launch in 1998, OFX has transferred more than $100B in 55 currencies across the globe. Drawing from two decades of experience, OFX Group is a leading global money transfer business, with over 300 employees and offices in San Francisco, Sydney, Toronto, San Francisco, London, Hong Kong and Auckland.
The OFX Group Limited is a publicly listed entity with shares on the Australian Securities Exchange (“ASX”) under the code “OFX.” The parent group is consolidating services under the global brand OFX from prior brands OzForex, UKForex, USForex, CanadianForex, NZForex, Tranzfers and ClearFX. OFX also powers the international money transfer services of Travelex, MoneyGram, ING Direct, Macquarie International Money Transfers and other international financial institutions. For more information on USForex, visit www.usforex.com or OFX.com.