How to Overcome Internationalization Risks

Updated: June 14, 2010

Internationalization offers new possibilities to business companies. It enables to increase their volumes of products and services and, therefore their turnover. It also leads to improvements in the production system as well as in the communication channels. When facing internationalization, companies tend to leverage their assets to operate more efficiently.

Internationalization involves many issues such as adapting your business operation to different regulations and taxation systems. It also requires translation and localization of the different business operations such as documentation, project planning, training, support and maintenance, etc.

Steps to achieve successful business internationalization:

1. Identify your goals and risks

Will you have a global goal or specific goals for different countries? This will depend on your approach (global or local) towards internationalization.

To control the risk factor, first of all, you need to identify them. A common economic risk is exchange rates fluctuations. There are also other risks related to political and social issues that might affect the economic exchange.

2. Detailed product evaluation

When analyzing the product, you should bear in mind all the aspects including product functionality, design, market price and name. Some products are unsuitable for specific markets due to their functionality or to specific local regulations.

3. Learn the regulatory frameworks

There are some products or services that are banned from specific countries or can be traded under strict regulations. Online gambling, for instances, has been banned or severely restricted in USA and therefore this country should not be a target for this type of services. You should also be aware of the Free Trade Agreements that involve your country.

4. Design a business strategy for each specific market

Each specific market will require a different approach and therefore you have to implement a strategy that will suit the target locale, starting from choosing a mode of entry. The operational strategy should depend on the market requirements, the resources available and the performances objectives. The appropriate business plan will require effective management information systems in order to expedite transactions and improve the quality of the services.

5. Take into consideration political and economic situation

Political, economic and social issues can stimulate or hinder business internationalization. These factors could affect buying behavior, exchange rates, products prices, taxes, etc. Political and economic uncertainties may certainly affect your business operations and for that reason a comprehensive research of the prospect markets should be carried out before starting any attempt of internationalization.

6. Be aware of the language barrier

The language barrier could easily hinder internationalization projects. It is highly advisable get the support of a translation company that specializes whether in financial translations or in legal translations. Get support from native speakers analysts that are culturally up-to-date. Their knowledge will help you to understand better the new environment and how to the advantages of the specific characteristics of the target market.

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