UKTI launches Go UK business competition with over $100k of prizes

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UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) helped more than 40 Australian companies successfully establish themselves in the UK last year and some 1000 Australian companies are already set up and doing business in the region.

To encourage further investment, UKTI has launched Go UK – a business plan competition open to Australian and New Zealand businesses with an interest in expansion to the UK.

Entries are open for Go UK participants to submit their business plan online with close of entries on Friday 3 February 2012.

The finalists for each region/category will be announced in February 2012 and the Australian winners and final prizes will be awarded at a cocktail reception in March in the following locations:

  • Sydney (covering all NSW, ACT and WA entrants);
  • Melbourne (covering all VIC, SA and TAS entrants); and
  • Brisbane (covering all QLD and NT entrants).

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Go UK gives Australian and New Zealand companies the chance to win business support packages that include British Airways return airfares to London, meetings with potential business partners, client contacts, business networks, Company formation (branch/Ltd), and employee support services, as well as ongoing UKTI support to expand to the UK and Europe, and then the world.

Richard Morris, Director General of UK Trade & Investment in Australia and New Zealand, says now is an opportune time for Australian businesses to expand into the UK.

“The UK is the easiest place in Europe to do business and has the least barriers to entrepreneurship in the world.  Just as Australia can be a gateway to Asia, the UK is the gateway to Europe and a combined population of around 500 million people,” Mr Morris said.

“We all know examples of great Aussie success stories in the UK. Everyone has heard about Macquarie, Westfield, BHP Billiton, NAB and others at the big end of town. But not so many people know about the SMEs that crack the UK market every year. It doesn’t matter what your line of business, any Australian company thinking of establishing themselves in the UK should enter Go UK.”

Mr Morris says the UK is much more than a financial services centre, it is the world’s sixth largest economy; one of the world’s top ten manufacturing nations; and has the world’s second largest aerospace industry; the world’s second largest – and Europe’s largest – life sciences industry; Europe’s second largest ICT sector; and its largest creative industry sector.

He adds: “Real estate in the UK is competitively priced; the Australian dollar is buying more than it has for many years and the UK economy is poised for a decade of growth, especially with the London 2012 Olympics just around the corner.  If you are thinking about expanding internationally, enter Go UK and contact UK Trade & Investment for assistance.”

A similar initiative, UK Market Entry (UKME) competitionwas run last year and attracted 95 entrants in Australia and 60 entrants in New Zealand.

The winners of the UK Market Entry (UKME) competition were Victorian-based aluminium design and manufacturing company, Lite Industries, making its own specialised range of products including shoring systems, pallets and tow trailers; and PHM Technology (PHMT), a software company that has developed advanced modelling and analysis tools for the design and operation of some of the critical systems that form the backbone of a range of industries from aerospace to oil & gas.

The winning Queensland companies were Noja Power, an exporter to the UK of its market-leading circuit breakers that increase the reliability of electricity supply and conform to the latest environmental standards; and In Business Systems, providing a revolutionary new method of connecting the framework for structural steel buildings.

The NSW winners were Rutherford Global Power; which provides temporary electrical systems for the construction and tunnelling industries; and Iris Interactive which helps bio-pharmaceutical and healthcare companies commercialise new products and bring medicines to patients faster.

To enter the Go UK competition, go to http://ukinaustralia.fco.gov.uk/go-uk/

To find out more about UKTI go to http://ukinaustralia.fco.gov.uk/en/business

BACKGROUNDER

DEADLINES

The Go UK business competition will run between 29 September 2011 and February 2012.

3 February 2012: Closing date for registration and completed application form.

Prize details

Three companies from Australia and one from New Zealand will each win a Go UK prize package worth at least $25,000, which will include:

For full terms and conditions of the competition see http://ukinaustralia.fco.gov.uk/go-uk

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