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How to overcome the 7 Hurdles to International Expansion

Ready, set... GROW. Make sure you overcome these 7 hurdles to international expansion and win the race!

In a talk for Emerce Crossborder Edition, weGrow co-founder Gernot Schwendtner highlights these 7 hurdles as:

  1. When Often start- & scale-ups undergo international expansion before they are ready, which leads to failure and overspending. ✅ Therefore, make sure you have the right timing, that your company is ready and that there are enough resources and market need where you want to enter.

  2. Where Some start- & scale-ups do not do enough research and enter a market based on quick beliefs, which can lead to landing in the wrong market. ✅ Make sure you choose the right markets by looking at the existing competition, the feasibility of entering and what kind of seniority you need to enter the market. weGrow offers guidance & tools to choose the right market to enter - so contact us!

  3. Go-To-Market Do not make the mistake of copy & paste - by not having a strategy in the right way this will cost you a lot of time and money. ✅ There are 5 different strategies to enter the market: I. Speed II. Proximity-driven III. Opportunistic IV. Sequential V. MVM™. Created by weGrow, the Minimum Viable Market looks at de-risking your entry by starting small with testing a few markets, gather data from these, and gradually funnel your list.

  4. Organisation Do not expect to just become a key local player when entering the market, you need to set up your organisation efficiently. ✅ Make sure you have the right people to set up your market and to run the market entry. The local presence is essential, and companies with local entity and boots on the ground have higher revenue than those who do not.

  5. Talents Do not start the talent search too late. ✅ Fill up the talent pipeline before moving to a new market, to see what is available locally. Create a local team culture and Maintain close communication with the local team & make them feel connected. A tip is to invite your new hire over to HQ for a full onboarding.

  6. Budget Some start- & scale-ups make the mistake of starting their expansion, but then have to stop in the process due to insufficient budget. ✅ Check that you have enough budget to support affordable loss and that you have enough resources to still support your principal market. Make a clear milestone plan to calculate your budget.

  7. Capital Start- & scale-ups that are inconsistent and unorganised in their portfolio, will not attract the capital needed to fund them. ✅ Prepare to attract the right capital by having a proper project plan, insights and storyline. Be clear in order to attract local and/or international VCs.

weGrow is here to help you overcome all 7 hurdles, so contact us immediately to discuss your growth journey! 👉 Check our internationalisation checklist here.



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