Lancashire companies named as export champions

UK Trade & Investment (UKTI) – the government body responsible for encouraging foreign trade – has highlighted the achievements of five Lancashire businesses for their excellent performances in the export sector.

Barrowford’s ACDC Lighting, Leyland’s Flexcrete Technologies, Poulton-le-Fylde’s Andrews Bowen, Pendle’s Colonial Gifts and Blackburn’s Graham & Brown have each been selected for their stellar performance overseas.

The Export Champions programme – an initiative unique to the North West region – was launched during Export Week by UKTI regional director Clive Drinkwater as part of a campaign to increase the number of British exporters by a quarter, adding a potential £36bn to the UK Economy.

Clive Drinkwater visited ACDC at its Barrowford site, where he went on a tour of the premises, met staff and explained more about the Export Champions programme.

The scheme will see successful exporters recruited to help and advise other companies, offering peer to peer advice and support in addition to the wide range of individually tailored professional services available from the UKTI North West team.

Clive Drinkwater said: “A year ago I challenged the North West business community to work with us to find 1,000 new exporters this year and we are well on our way. However, we are keen to harness the expertise and enthusiasm of the region’s many companies who are already successful exporters, and so I am delighted to be able to announce that ACDC will be one of our new ‘Export Champions’. The lighting firm will become a beacon to inspire non-exporters to get started and new exporters to do more.

“Our inaugural Export Champions are all businesses who will inspire and motivate those new to international trade, both by promoting the benefits of export via their own successes and by sharing knowledge and experience for the benefit of other firms.”

Ian Clarke, finance director at ACDC, added: “We are delighted to be chosen as Export Champions and to be able to encourage other firms to export and grow the region’s trade. Although the UK market is still very profitable for us, exports continue to be a vital part of our growth strategy and we are pleased to work with UKTI to help other companies on their journey.”