This is a guest post from Mark Rodgers, CEO at Cipherion. Like many of us in Enterprise Ireland, Mark is totally passionate about regaining Ireland’s once enviable position as a nation of multilingual businesspeople:
At a reception in the Japanese Embassy in Dublin last week, there was an interesting discussion about one topic that’s hot with Japanese CEOs, i.e. the need for Japanese exporters to adopt a “China plus One” export strategy.
The current concern among Japanese CEOs is that should something happen to the Chinese economy then Japanese exporters could be left with little alternatives within Asia. Currently exports from Japan to China are doing well. However, a more balanced approach to exporting can mitigate against market risk. Japanese organisations are now focused on targeting multiple Asian markets: i.e. adopting a “China plus One” strategy meaning, for instance, “China plus Vietnam” or “China plus Malaysia”.
At Cipherion we believe that this concept could be used to Ireland’s benefit, albeit slightly modified, to encourage Irish CEOs and exporters to be more adventurous and more ambitious in their business development efforts.
By adopting an “English plus One” export strategy, Irish organisations would focus on, for example, exporting in “English plus French” or “English plus German”. So as well as targeting our traditional English-speaking UK or US markets, Irish exporters should be encouraged to take the leap and target another non-English speaking market – for example, the large French, German, Spanish or Italian markets where there are over 250 million consumers.