Where to start a Business in the US? One Example:

Location, location, location! As my colleague explains in his post, the approach to select a corporate site should be articulated. Let’s focus on the Southeast for example.

After defining the target markets, the marketing mix, the partner or target profile, along with other appropriate criteria for the operation like sourcing, financing and funding needs, economical impact and organizational implication, etc., the entrepreneur might have a good idea about the right place for successfully growing a venture.

Other factors that might play a role include infrastructure, access to talented resources, cost of living, economic growth rate, local market size, taxes, economic incentives, schools, prospective partner location, the cost of doing business relative to the U.S. average, and the time difference between the location and the home country.

An article written in French by journalist Jean-Pierre Gonguet describes the Southeast‘s vision and the strategy for becoming a global logistic platform and high-tech hub. “Atlanta veut se mettre à l’air et a l’eau.” Read more in La Tribune (If you do not read French and want more information, let’s have a conversation.) Gonguet was part of the delegation from France during the France-Atlanta 3rd edition last November.

Without being specific on a business model, focusing only on the economic environment makes sense. The Southeast—Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina and Tennessee— is the leading market for population and economic growth in the U.S.

The Southeast:

  • 7th largest economy (GDP) in the world at $3.15 trillion,
  •  home of 70 million people (+8 million in the last 10 years),
  • Atlanta airport is ranked # 1 in world in passenger volume and has 19 cargo-only carriers,
  • headquarters for 12 Fortune 500 and 15 Fortune 1000 in Metro Atlanta,
  • More than 80% of U.S. consumers can be reached from Atlanta in two flight hours or two truckload delivery days,
  • 40% of North American manufacturing and distribution locations are located within 800 kilometers of Atlanta,
  • Atlanta ranks # 2 among America’s most wired cities.

Cost of doing Business in teh US 001

“Source: KPMG’S 2010 Competitive Alternatives Study, Guide to international Business Location”

Despite the statistics, the best business location for a business model might be in San Francisco or in the Mid-West. This is perfectly fine! In other words, the best location for establishing a new venture is a complex decision indeed but key to successful operations.

Advertisements

Adjust to local market conditions to penetrate the market …

Learn more when Airbus Americas Chairman speaks at Georgia Tech on March 13.

By establishing a manufacturing presence in the U.S. today, Airbus also improves its chances of being selected in the future for U.S. defense contracts, according to business analysts. Read full article by Phil Bolton. Read more

The French American Chamber of Commerce organizes this event, and thanks to the Chamber, COGNEGY is a proud sponsor. Register here.

Strategy: The Airbus investment in the Southeast raises the region’s profile as a center for aerospace development, and suppliers have already moved to the area since the Airbus announcement about opening a facility in Mobile last year. Penetrating a new market by following the tail of one’s customers is a great way to mitigate the risks. Needless to say, it costs a lot less to retain a customer than acquire a new one.

“You can observe a lot by watching. “ Yogi Berra (Yogi was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972.)

Comment les investissements des sociétés Françaises à l’étranger impactent – ils la production et l’emploi en France ?

En pleine crise économique, cette question parait encore plus légitime et apolitique à mon sens et toutes les parties prenantes d’une entreprise doivent se la poser. Mais comment répondre en faisant abstraction de certains préjugés et avec des faits ?

Dans son étude, l’Insee apporte une réponse. Son article évalue les performances des firmes multinationales dans l’industrie manufacturière Française, et les compare à celles des entreprises uniquement exportatrices et domestiques.

<< Les meilleures performances des entreprises implantées à l’étranger s’expliquent en partie par un effet de sélection : investir à l’étranger s’accompagne de coûts fixes importants et nécessite un niveau de productivité relativement élevé. Pourtant, l’implantation à l’étranger joue un rôle important dans la fragmentation des processus de production qui expliquerait en partie les bonnes performances à l’exportation des entreprises allemandes. (Fontagné et Gaulier, 2008).

EXPORT

Pour Crozet, Méjean et Zignago (2008), les exportateurs ont, en moyenne, une productivité supérieure de 11 % et cette prime se retrouve dans la différence de salaire moyen et de taux de marge. Pour Bellone et al. (2008), les firmes exportatrices produisent 2,5 fois plus que les firmes simplement domestiques ; elles sont deux fois plus grandes, plus intensives en capital de 24 % et versent des salaires plus élevés de 10 %. La productivité du travail serait supérieure de 40 % mais décroissante avec la taille de l’entreprise. En termes de Productivité Totale des Facteurs (PTF), la prime des exportateurs, qui se situe autour de 5 %, tend à augmenter avec la part de la production exportée.

IMPLANTATION

Les primes à l’implantation dépassent largement les primes à l’exportation, en tous points de la distribution.

Il apparaît que toutes les primes sont positives et significatives, et que les primes à l’implantation sont supérieures aux primes à l’exportation.

La prime de chiffre d’affaires s’accompagne d’une prime de valeur ajoutée : les entreprises implantées à l’étranger ne se contentent donc pas de revendre une production réalisée à l’étranger, mais se caractérisent bien par une contribution au PIB plus importante. Elles rémunèrent mieux leur personnel, ce qui reflète probablement un niveau de qualification plus élevé.

Enfin, la prime de productivité pour les entreprises implantées à l’étranger représente le triple de celle calculée pour les firmes exportatrices.

CONCLUSION

La comparaison exhaustive des performances des multinationales de l’industrie française avec celles des firmes seulement exportatrices et domestiques montre que les primes à l’implantation sont élevées et résistent à l’hétérogénéité de l’échantillon, comme à la prise en compte de caractéristiques non observables des firmes. Elles proviennent tout à la fois d’un effet de sélection et d’une amélioration des performances grâce à l’implantation à l’étranger. Ce dernier résultat est de nature à tempérer l’inquiétude que font peser les délocalisations sur l’emploi et l’activité en France. Il conviendrait toutefois d’approfondir ces résultats en décrivant plus précisément les mécanismes à l’œuvre derrière les effets d’apprentissage. >>

Il est clair que l’article provient d’un organisme statisticien mais cela permet de donner un éclairage dépassionné et factuel sur l’investissement à l’étranger.

En premier lieu comme pour tout investissement, il faut une réelle opportunité sur le marché qu’il convient de bien sélectionner et préparer au préalable.

Gateway to North American Market … What’s in it?

Even if you believe that you have a great business model, you still have to find a cost-effective way to market and sell your offer/products and services in the US. Wouldn’t you agree?

Let me tell you a true story. This is what an actual entrepreneur said: “I know the US market and how to approach it. My strategy is quite simple and I do not want to waste time and money on a business plan; I want to focus on selling. I need to find distributors and someone to call on prospects. I heard about some internship program, so I am going to hire a young talent and put her/him in a Business Center to sell my products.”

In other words, the entrepreneur wants to use under-experienced, under-skilled resources for prospecting. Although the training sounds great for the young talent, the model is quite unfair if the focus is on results.

Prospecting is costly because, in essence, the success rate is quite low. Getting the chance to talk or meet with the right prospect at the right level is part of your cost of sales, and the cost of sales is high in many markets. When you prospect, your first chance is quite often the last one.  Consequently, carpet bombing is not only expensive, but it can damage your brand forever.

Before you begin distributing, you need to identify how, where, and to whom you intend to sell the service. You also need to assess the competition and figure out how much money you need to start the business and keep it running until it is established.

The information we gather in the market feasibility enables us to:

  • List in detail all the things we need to make the business work;
  • Identify logistical and other business-related problems and solutions.

Beyond that first quick step, our gateway “a la carte” might help you decrease costs, mitigate risks and accelerate development. This business platform might be useful in your Business Development Activities (Legal, Marketing, Office, Finance, Logistic, Operations, Invoicing, Recruitment, etc.), Sales & Trading Support, and Implementation Support (JV, Acquisition, Strategic Alliance, Representation).

“You’ve got to be very careful if you don’t know where you’re going because you might not get there.” – Yogi Berra (Yogi was elected to the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 1972.)

Is the timing right to enter the US market?

According to Gregory L. Miller, Chief Economist of the SunTrust Bank, Inc., the US economy will grow by 3.5% in 2012 with unemployment rates decreasing to 6%, while the European zone will hit a recession. With such predictions you must be considering to enter the US Market either by acquisition or with a JV, a pilot or a partner?

In any case the first logical step is to kick off a market feasibility study. Now, if you have not done so yet, why didn’t you?

The market feasibility will determine the viability of the Biz with an emphasis on the identification of potential problems and will answer one key question:  Will the business be profitable and should I go ahead?

Before you even start writing the business plan, you need to identify how, where, and to whom you intend to sell your service or product. You want to assess the competition and figure out how much money is needed to start your business and keep it running until it has found traction. Wouldn’t you agree?

The information you gather and present in your feasibility study will help you to:

  • List in detail all the things to make the business work
  • Identify logistical and other business-related problems (technical feasibility, legal) and their solutions
  • Develop marketing strategies to convince investors, banks or even shareholders that your business is worth investing in
  • Serve as a solid foundation for the development of your business plan and the search for the right partners

Even if you believe that you have a great business proposition, a cost-effective way to ‘market and sell’ the offer (combination of products and services) onto the US market still has to be found.

Be the outcome ‘launch’ or ‘abort’, the investment in a solid market feasibility study is never a waste of time or money when deciding to enter such a highly competitive market.