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SME Bank Facilitates UK Market Entry For SMEs Via "Gateway To UK" Workshop Under The Business Exports Program

KUALA LUMPUR: 28 July 2023 – Small Medium Enterprise Development Bank Malaysia Berhad (SME Bank) opened up the opportunity for SMEs to penetrate the UK market through the Business Exports Program’s “Gateway to UK” workshop. The three-day workshop has enlightened 45 companies on all aspects of market entry, from market research and identifying potential customers to business development and sales.

SME Bank Group President / Chief Executive Officer, Datuk Wira (Dr.) Aria Putera Ismail said, “We are scouting for at least 10 eligible SMEs to be part of the London Export Acceleration Mission (London EAM) scheduled to be held in January 2024. The London EAM will pave the way for them to gain first-hand experience on how to grow their business internationally by engaging with potential buyers, finding investors, and building networks with the Malaysian diaspora in the region.”

The EAM is one of the activities under the Business Exports Program (BEP), an initiative under the Ministry of Entrepreneur and Cooperatives Development, where SME Bank was entrusted with funds worth RM13.1 million. In 2022, SME Bank has brought a total of 47 BEP participants to participate in five EAMs. Since joining BEP and as of December 2022 they have successfully generated export sales of RM123.40 million. For 2023, we have participated in two EAMs involving 18 participants and in the pipeline, there will be two EAMs scheduled for the remainder of the year.

Head of Coordination & Customised Programmes, Saaidah Khadijah Naim added, “The Gateway to UK Workshop attracted exporters of different levels, from beginners who have never exported before to advanced exporters who are looking to expand their UK market share. The different levels of exporters in the workshop made this initiative even more beneficial by enabling them to share their knowledge and experiences”. SME Bank, with support from MATRADE, has brought Makan Bites Ltd., a market linker based in London that specialises in helping SMEs to enter the UK and European markets.

“We have seen so much potential with Malaysian companies during this workshop. We have scheduled a follow-up webinar session with the selected entrepreneurs that will be participating in the London EAM. With active collaboration with Government agencies such as SME Bank and MATRADE as well as MECD, we hope to be the enabler for Malaysian-made products to enter the UK market and create more awareness on this,” said Cheryl Ellron, Chief Executive Officer of Makan Bites Ltd.

The Gateway to UK Workshop is among the initiatives of XCESS Beyond Borders (XBB), which provides a platform for pre-scheduled one-to-one business meetings to connect Malaysian SMEs with potential buyers from around the world. XBB will be one of the key features of SME Bank XCESS, the Bank’s annual flagship event for SMEs to source for high-value business networking, business matching and to connect with identified financing providers.

SME Bank XCESS 2023 is scheduled for September 2023. For more information on this most anticipated event as well as other SME Bank entrepreneur development programmes and financing, kindly visit the Bank’s official website www.smebank.com.my and SME Bank Facebook Page.