Creating an Export Business to Australia

Before we reveal some little-known tips on how to sell export products in the Land Down Under, let’s look at Australia’s competitive strengths as a country.

According to the latest statistics on, Australia is the world’s 14th richest country with a Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of US$1.011 trillion in 2008. Australian consumers have purchasing power; the Land Down Under is the 26th wealthiest nation based on its $38,100 GDP per capita.


While Australia is not immune to the current global recession, the Australian government has implemented spending stimulus programs aimed at putting money in the pockets of consumers rather than on bailing out financially stressed bureaucracies. For example, Aussie parents whose annual earnings are less than US$61,000 receive a baby bonus that amounts to roughly US$4,200 per year for each child born after January 1, 2009.


Australians love to import. The CIA World Factbook ranks Australia as the world’s 22nd leading importer, consuming US$187.2 billion worth of imports in 2008. Leading foreign goods shipped into Australia are computers, crude oil, telecommunications and transportation equipment.


Last year, Australian imports from the U.S. rose 16% to $22 billion according to the US Census Bureau – Foreign Trade Statistics. The fastest-growing shipments from America were collectible coins (up a staggering 2,000%), non-monetary gold (up 541%) and complete military aircraft (up 191%).


A blatantly obvious advantage of exporting to Australia is the fact that Aussies are native speakers of English. This mitigates the need to translate a long list of export documents into another official language like French, Spanish or Chinese. Typically, product packaging and labeling will not have to be translated or redone to comply with local regulations.


Trade relations with Australia have been remarkably free of major disputes. On the World Trade Organization disputes-by-country page, Australia is involved in only 6 outstanding disputes with the U.S. and only one from Canada. Entrepreneurs should read case specifics on the WTO dispute listing to see whether their products are affected.


The biggest constraint with exporting to Australia may be the roughly 10,000 miles of ocean that separate North American exporters from Australia.


However, even that formidable physical distance can be used as a protective barrier that keeps out less-persistent competitors.


After all, shipping costs and delivery times to major Australian cities are reasonable. Prospective exporters to Australia should check with local shipping companies and available postal delivery services to find the best transportation provider offering lowest possible prices.


Secrets to Selling Your Exports in Australia


Exporters can also contract out selling duties to an established trading house in their home countries or hire a local sales representative in Australia. This enables exporting entrepreneurs to concentrate on core competencies like improving product design and documentation.


Another tip is to contact the Trade Commissioner Services that represents your home country in Australia. For example, Trade Commissioner Services are attached to the Canadian or American embassy overseas. Trade commissioners are commercial diplomats who help home-country businesses enter foreign markets by providing practical information on the do’s and don’ts of a specific foreign market like Australia.


Internet World Stats reports that over 75% of the Australian population are Internet users. To attract web-savvy Aussie consumers, an enterprising exporter can join one of the following distribution websites.

Australia’s eBay site auctions products online to Aussie members    Craigslist Australia offers sale listings specific to 8 Australian cities    Gumtree Australia is the Aussie version of Kijiji, and offers free classified ads to 10 Australian cities    Google ads can be bought for sales campaigns that exclusively target Australian users  In addition, international trade portals like Alibaba and Kompass enable exporters to make business-to-business sales.

Entrepreneurial exporters should consider promoting their products on social media. Sites like the ones listed below can attract online traffic from Australia-specific keyword searches.

YouTube videos that explain the uniqueness of your product to Australians    Facebook Australia to send ongoing marketing communications to your Australian contacts    Twitter Australia to attract an Aussie following through keyword-rich tweets about your product.  Not only does the Internet make it remarkably easy to reach Australian consumers online, many of the above sites are free and are packed with built-in marketing tools like group email bulletins and invitations.

Virgin to Snap Up Northern Rock

Sir Richard Branson could soon be at the helm of Northern Rock after Chancellor George Osborne put it up for sale.

The entrepreneur wants to splash out on 660 Lloyds branches as well ‘” and the deals would give his Virgin Money a real presence on the high street. The Rock was nationalised in 2008 after it nearly collapsed partly because its mortgage lending was so generous. Selling the Rock could bring the Treasury about one billion pounds.

The Lloyds branches are up for sale because the banking group was ordered by competition regulators to sell them.

This followed Lloyds Banking Group’s merger with HBOS during the financial crisis.

The Lloyds sale includes the TSB name and the Cheltenham and Gloucester branches and could go for about three billion pounds.

Sir Richard said: “We have financing commitments from people to enable us to do both acquisitions if the prices is right. We have got most of the boxes ticked now and we were looking at the Lloyds figures yesterday.


“This is a big opportunity for us and is fantastically exciting.


“It will cost us millions to bid for both [Northern Rock and the Lloyds branches] but we will be spending those millions.” Private equity firms and US tycoon Wilbur Ross are expected to provide the funds to Sir Richard for the acquisition. The Northern Rock purchase would give Virgin Money a big mortgage lending division. This new player could really shake the mortgage and remortgage markets up for the benefit of home-owners and first-time buyers.


Sir Richard wanted to buy Northern Rock in 2008 after it went belly-up, but then Prime Minister decided to nationalise it instead. Max Erskine from said: “A new player in the mortgage and remortgage markets might really help the house buyers. “Other lenders would see a threat and would fight harder to keep customers and they’d do that by making their products more attractive.

“Branson is a populist and publicist and he will want to attract people to his mortgage and remortgage offers.

“Northern Rock was really the big name that summed up the financial crisis in 2008 and to see it back in private hands will be interesting.

“Selling it will hopefully get the taxpayers some of their money back. And it might also breathe new life into the north east where it is based.

“Despite Branson’s magic touch for business, the mortgage and remortgage markets are unlikely ever to reach the state they were in prior to the crash where pretty much anyone could secure a loan.

“Deposits are always now likely to be required, which was not always the case, particularly with Northern Rock.”

America’s Look Changes as Chains and Franchises Disappear

Major changes are taking place on Main Street, USA. Several big box stores have closed, such as Circuit City and Linens’n Things, leaving yawning, vacant, chasms that scream blight, and cause cities to lose even more tax revenue. Coupled with this week’s closing of Chrysler and General Motors dealerships, the landscape is definitely changing.

Smaller franchises are being hit hard also. In Orlando, on the ever popular, heavily traveled highway 50 that dissects the town, you’ll pass closed Chili’s, Friday’s, Applebee’s and Bennigan’s. There’s even one stretch where five of these once popular franchises stand deteriorating side-by-side.


What is that going to do to the look of our cities? Once, growth in any form was welcomed and would probably prosper. Why, for instance, did five of the same type of restaurant franchises ever exist side by side? Perhaps this is the time for America to diversify. Maybe a mom and pop type eating establishment might be welcomed. In Central Florida, this seems to be happening, offering opportunities for smaller, less advertised businesses to open their doors without the corporate backing and accompanying overhead of the cost of a franchise. If the stimulus package really kicks in, and banks once again lend to small businesses, we’ll continue to see this trend.


Possibilities for successful small scale or one location businesses might improve in the not-to-distant future. While it’s not the time to invest in a national chain, it may just be the time to be thinking of new opportunities on a smaller, more local scale. America may end up with cities that have a more unique look as smaller businesses open their doors and apply their individual creativity.


Young Entrepreneur Grant

The government is promoting young entrepreneurs by providing financial and moral support to young business owners. Young entrepreneur grant is one of these financial aids that the government and many private companies and organizations offer for the young business owners. If you have a good business idea and you wish to enter into this profession, you can apply for the most suitable grants. Searching for these grants is the main thing and you should invest sufficient time and effort to this. Find out the details of the grants and then see that you qualify for it.

There is a system that has to be followed when you have decided to apply for the government grants. If you wish to avail the opportunity provided by the government and non-government agencies, you will have to be well prepared for everything. Meet the qualifying factors and fulfill the requirements and then fill out the application form. If you are determined to apply for business grants, you need to prepare a good business plan for it. This plan should be an outline of your business, including its objectives and how you have planned to spend the grant money once you receive it. You also need to specify the reason behind your financial crunch.

Young entrepreneur grant is competitive and you will have to prove that you are the most suitable candidate for the grants. This you can do by presenting your business idea as unique and novel. Support your business plan with a genuine market survey report that gives a positive picture of the business in near future. The survey report will give proper insight of your business to the panel.

You can join Small Business Association of your area and take help and tips from the old members there. They have the experience of applying for government grants and they are aware of the expectations of the panel. This will be of real great help for you. Once you know the right process and how to prepare impressive and persuasive business plan, you will have improved chances of winning the young entrepreneur grant money.


Self-Made Careers Over 50

After twenty-nine years, a fifty-seven year old sales manager for a Detroit auto parts supplier received a termination notice the week before Christmas.

Without the keys to his former company car but with a month’s severance check and a banker’s boxful of personal possessions off the walls and out of the desk in the office he’d occupied for more than a quarter of a century, the ex-sales manager took a cab home, trying to think of an easy way to break the news to his wife.

But there was no ‘easy way’ to tell her that he’d lost a job he loved, a job that not only provided a comfortable living but also provided his identity for most of his adult life. So he was honest about how scared he was, about his not-too-optimistic view of the future and, while he was at it, he admitted that the retirement they were looking forward to was no longer assured.

For better or for worse, the sales manager and his wife were empty-nesters with two married daughters living in California and a son serving with the Marines in Afghanistan.

They had no one to turn to but each other, so they formed a working partnership dedicated to generating the income they needed to support themselves and to continue preparing for retirement.

He put his ego aside and applied for unemployment benefits while she put her ego aside to take a part-time clerical job in a rundown downtown drug rehab facility. She agreed to be completely supportive, without criticism or complaint and he agreed to make looking for a job his new job and to keep her posted on his progress.

He was anxious to get back to work so he left the house by seven each morning to do what he loved to do . . . sell. The difference now was that instead of selling auto parts, he was selling himself. He did his research and created an ever-evolving list of ‘target’ companies that included just about every prospective employer within a radius of a hundred miles.

After six months of clicking through every imaginable online job site, searching endless help-wanted ads and contacting hundreds of potential employers, despite his experience and excellent work record, he realized that no one was going to hire him.

So, he decided to hire himself.

Smart self-made career planning

The ex-sales manager and his wife realized that to start a new business at any age, especially in this economy, could be terminally risky. So, they decided to not leave anything to chance.

Husband and wife agreed to extend their partnership to cover the new business. They would plan the business together and once it was up and running, he would manage the marketing and sales activities while she handled the administrative side.

The business would ‘contract-sell’ B2B products and services for dealers, distributors and manufacturers with a ‘portable, no-overhead’ sales department that would work for non-competing companies for a fraction of what it costs to operate an in-house sales department.

Defining a self-made career to ensure success

Husband and wife met with a Small Business Administration counselor to work through a ‘SWOT’ (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats) analysis to determine whether or not their basic business proposition would fill a real need in the market.

They consulted with a business attorney, a commercial banker and an insurance agent to determine what the legal structure should be and how best to finance and insure the business.

The last step in the process was to write a business plan to follow as they launched and began to operate the business. The plan described the business, its legal structure, its economic goals and defined how services would be advertised, marketed, delivered and priced. The plan also included an estimated operating budget for the first twelve months based on projected income and cash flow.

After meeting with a Small Business Development Center counselor, the husband and his wife made some minor adjustments to the basic business plan, arranged for SBA start-up financing and then went home to get a good night’s slept.

They knew they’d need it.


Business Structure: Limited Liability Company: Is A Limited Liability Company The Right Business Structure For You?

There are many different business structures that may suit your entrepreneurial needs, and most countries offer the options of starting a business as a sole proprietorship, partnership, or corporation. But in the US, there is another option, called the Limited Liability Company (or LLC for short), which combines some of the benefits of all the other options.

What Is A Limited Liability Company?

A Limited Liability Company is a business structure authorized for use in certain US states that allows both the owners and managers to have only limited liability for the financial aspects of the business (mostly tax benefits), while incorporating some of the perks of running an S corporation. An LLC is not a corporation however, even though some entrepreneurs (mistakenly) call this business structure a Limited Liability Corporation. Additionally, owners are called members, and there can be an infinite number of them.

The Benefits Of A Limited Liability Company

Running an LLC has several benefits over sole proprietorships, partnerships and/or corporations. They are:

  • Limited Liability: like the title says, an LLC offers is members limited liability for all financial decisions. The only way to waive this is to have the member sign a document personally guaranteeing the money they’ve invested into the business;
  • Flexible Profit Options: Unlike the S Corporation which has a 50/0 profit split, LLCs can pick and choose the type of profit structure that works best for their organization;
  • No Need For Minute Taking: S Corporations require all meetings to have minutes recorded and filed, and all resolutions registered. An LLC gets away with having to do neither, thus reducing administrative time (although many LLCs do anyway);
  • Tax Benefits: By having an LLC, all profits and losses move through the corporation and into the members’ hands, thus avoiding any sort of double taxation issues (where both the corporation and the individual are taxed on the same amount).

The Drawbacks Of A Limited Liability Company

Like any business structure, there are drawbacks to every option. The drawbacks to a limited liability company are:

  • Finite Timeline: Corporations can live forever, but LLCs only live as long as all of the members are still alive and don’t declare bankruptcy;
  • Unable To Go Public: Unlike a corporation, limited liability companies cannot take their businesses public;
  • More Complex: A sole proprietorship is the most basic of business structures, and even a partnership is less challenging to run than an LLC. However, an LCC (as explained previously) has less paperwork to manage than a corporation.


How To Pump Up Profits From Holiday Sales: The Best Ways To Maximize Profits During The Holiday Season

Many small business owners and entrepreneurs make a good portion of their yearly sales during the last few months of the year according to the National Retail Foundation.

Maximize Profits During The Holidays Through Loyalty

This isn’t to say a small business needs to start a loyalty program with cards, points and so forth, but rather to focus on what makes customers come back, year after year, to do business with a local business. Which of these ideas might work?

  • Review local media regarding customers wanting to get closer to their roots to either shop locally or focus more on traditional, family-based values. How do these issues affect the business, and how can they be used to connect customers with products or services?
  • Connect with local organizations to let people know in the community that the business cares and is deeply entrenched in the success of the area. How? By donating to charities, helping organize community events, sponsoring local holiday events, and/or working with groups to allow them space, time or resources.
  • Arrange large, special events for the locals that no other business can. Speaking tours, yearly contests, or housing an installment of an art walk are all ways to build customer loyalty and maximize profits during the holidays.

Maximize Profits By Focusing On Holiday Sales Marketing

Marketing can encompass a great many things, and planning for the holidays doesn’t change that. What does change however is knowing how the holidays changes marketing focus, and what customers are looking for. So, to maximize profits during this time of year, try:

  • Ensure that all products being sold for holiday profit are exactly what customers are looking for, especially towards the end of the season. This means having those “must buy” items in stock for last minute shoppers, as well as providing easy access to these products early on in as well.
  • Make a holiday sales plan based on past performance, other retailers in similar markets, and suppliers – and then stick to it. For example, if buyers don’t normally look for deep discounts until Boxing Day in the area, don’t bother offering them until then.
  • Take a peek at what is selling sluggishly and mark it down accordingly so that there isn’t extra inventory after the holidays that requires even more slashing.

Maximize Profits With A Specialized Holiday Sales Plan

It is increasingly difficult to compete with the big box stores as entrepreneurs because of the large chains’ deep marketing budgets. But that doesn’t mean that its pointless to create a specialized holiday sales plan – it just means catering more to specific customer niches and ensuring they are captured with an appropriate message. Some ideas to ensure a larger, captive audience:

  • Use those emails addresses culled over the past year and create a special holiday newsletter for all past customers. Just make sure not to make a holiday sales email the first of emails received in a long time; not only does it make an entrepreneur look desperate, it can backfire if customers get wind of this.
  • Try targeted geographical online marketing via Yahoo! or Google.
  • Discuss mail drops with your local post office that focus only on those in the area that will most benefit from the businesses’ holiday message.
  • Jump on the social networking bandwagon and start creating a following via MySpace, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and the like.

Finding Rental Property in Memphis: Help Locating a Home or Apartment to Rent in Western Tennessee

The following is a guest post from Nigerian real estate developer Michael Chudi Ejekam.

Memphis is a Unique Place to Live

Memphis is unique from other metropolitan cities, and research is suggested before relocating to the area. In most cities, there are definitive districts and parts of town that appeal to potential residents, and finding property within that area is a matter of checking the classified section. In Memphis, districts change on every street corner, and crossing the street can make a significant difference in the amount of crime or poverty you’re subjected to.

What Type of Apartment or House would you Like?

Memphis has soul, and culture and most of all, history. Recently, Memphis Business Quarterly reported that Memphis has an abundance of old historical buildings in comparison to other cities. When other cities were going through rapid growth, demolishing entire blocks and rebuilding, Memphis grew slow and steady reducing the need for destruction of old buildings. If you’re comfortable living in a building with old fixtures, there are a multitude of apartment and homes available that were built at the turn of the century. If you love open rooms and elaborate architecture, you may want to consider Mid-Town or Downtown. If you’re not a fan of really old plumbing and radiators, this might not be for you.

If you’re looking for an affordable apartment, or an area with a lot of nightlife look for properties advertised near any of the colleges and universities. Usually these properties have low or negotiable deposits, quick move in, and short term leases. These neighborhoods generally have a lot of traffic, and aren’t always the quietest place to live, but there is always something to do and an abundance of neighbors.

Low rent properties can be found in Whitehaven, parts of Bartlett, Frayser, Raleigh, Orange Mound and Millington. Keep in mind that you get what you pay for, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Security is a big concern in Memphis, and if the rent is below a reasonable amount, you may not be happy with the neighborhood. If you’re not concerned about crime, or neighborhood aesthetics, these areas will definitely save you money.

The suburbs, Cordova, Germantown, Collierville and beyond are generally considered some of the more expensive neighborhoods. In the last ten years a large crop of apartments have sprouted up, and many offer competitive rates. If you like the amenities of the city, just outside the urban sprawl these areas may be for you. If you find subdivision and large scale design gated apartment complexes not to your liking, this may not be the place for you.

Available Resources for Finding Property

If you have the money, there are many Apartment Locator firms in Memphis. They are skilled in finding exactly what you’re looking for, but be prepared to pay a premium price. This is an excellent resource if company is paying for you to relocate. If you’re paying for your relocation on your own, however, you have options.

The Commercial Appeal and The Memphis Flyer, two local publications often have numerous rental properties advertised in the classified section. You can view both online, and sometimes the listing offer pictures. Be weary when calling on ads, of any “rental companies” that require you to pay a registration fee to be privy to their property listings. An application fee for a rental property is commonplace, though it can be avoided with the right land lord.

Online browsing is an effective way of gauging the market if you’re already familiar with Memphis. It can be dangerous if you’re taking the listings at face value. A “rustic apartment near Downtown in a diverse neighborhood” may conjure an image that is somewhat deceptive. If you are in town, and have the ability to drive past properties, do so. If you do not, utilize web sites like Craig’s List and City Data and ask locals to describe the area of town.

Price Range of Property for Rent in Memphis

As of May, 2017 you can realistically find a rental property that is safe and conveniently located near city amenities with two bedrooms anywhere from $650.00 up. Below $650.00 and the quality you can expect from such property would need to be reviewed on a case by case basis. In the suburbs, expect to pay $750.00 a month and up for apartments, and more for homes.

Usually, Memphis rental properties require a deposit, application fee and pet deposit. Finding homes and buildings that allow pets is relatively easy. Expect to either have two forms of ID (Social Security Card doesn’t count) to have your utilities turned on, or pay a $250.00 deposit. Cable and Internet services can usually be hooked up within three days of calling the company.

Take Time to Shop, Extended Stay Hotels

If you have the time, look into several low priced extended stay hotels in the Sycamore View area. This part of town is mainly offices, and the price range of hotels can be significantly lower for extended stay compared to other areas of town.

Good luck in finding a place, and feel free to respond with any personal experiences.


Risks Entrepreneur Will Take in Business

Everyday we take risks; in the business world profit comes from taking risks. A risk is simply the possibility of damage, injury or loss. Because of these risks it is very important that business owners and entrepreneurs have a back up plan in case something does happen and by doing this they show that they are aware and ready to face any potential risks that may arise.

Common risks that almost all business’ face include competition, price and style changes, and changes in the economy. There are two kinds of primary risks that and entrepreneur will make, speculative and pure risk. (Entrepreneurship)

Speculative risk is the uncertainty as to whether an activity will result in a gain or a loss. Examples of these risks are building a plant that you later find out is the wrong capacity, or having a building that is too large or too small to maintain your inventory. Speculative risks are unavoidable and play a constant role in the private enterprise system. (Entrepreneurship)

Pure risks are the uncertainty as to whether some unpredictable event that can result in loss will occur. Pure risks results are always a loss and never a gain.

Examples of pure risks include fire, flooding, deaths of key employees, or customer injuries on business owned property. Pure risks differ from speculative risks because speculative risk has the possibility of both gain and loss whereas pure risk only results in loss. (Entrepreneurship)

Now that you have a plan all set to avoid risks for your business what are you plans to ensure that you personally will have a successful future which will one day lead to retirement. Well the key to that is a financial management plan. First you need to set some smart financial goals that will help you get where you want to go in life, these goals are a guide to personal, career, and financial success. A successful management plan includes:

  • Wealth Protection

o Cash Management

o Emergency Cash Reserve

o Risk Management

o Tax Management

  • Wealth Accumulation

o SMART Financial Goals

  • Specific
  • Measurable
  • Attainable
  • Relevant & Realistic
  • Time-line

o Credit Management

o Home Ownership

o Investments

o Children’s Education

o Retirement Planning

  • Wealth Distribution

o Estate Planning (Successful Financial Management)

All businesses and personal financial management face some kind of risk and there is no way to completely avoid them. Different management procedures can help minimize how hard you or your company is hit by a loss but no procedure can eliminate risk entirely. Both successful businesses, and successful financial plans must be able to notice all kinds of risks and be able to take preventative actions to reduce the damage they will cause to the company or else all your hard work and dreams can be lost in an instant.


Entrepreneurship Education. Homepage.

Retrieved Entrepreneurship Education Web site:

Successful Financial Management. Homepage. Retrieved  from Basic Building of Successful Financial Management Plan Web site:

Wikipedia.. Homepage. Retrieved from Stock Market

Wikipedia Web site:

Negative Equity and Short Selling in the US: Increasing Mortgage Foreclosure a Feature of American Housing Market

The following post is a guest post from Houston, Texas area real estate developer and entrepreneur Tracy Suttles. Tracy can be best contacted for questions, comments and concerns on Twitter at @tracydsuttles.

First quarter property values in the US dropped around 14% from the year before: “Reducing the median value of US, single family homes, condominiums and cooperatives to $182,378. The decline has left about 20.4 million of the US’s 93 million houses, condos and co-ops with loans higher than the property is worth. The gain in underwater (negative equity) homeowners will lead to more bank repossessions,” said Zillow.

A further report released by First American CoreLogic said the 8.3 million American mortgages were “upside down” at the end of the year up from 7.6 million the previous quarter. In the United States a staggering 17.6% of homes are now underwater as are 41.2% of all mortgages for homes bought in the last year, according to Zillow.

Negative Equity

The report highlights not only the increasing levels of negative equity, particularly in California, Nevada, Arizona and Florida, but also expresses concern about its geographical widening. Nevada was the state with the largest percentage of negative equity with more than half its residents in that unenviable position. The average loan-to-value ratio said CoreLogic was 97%, or less than $8,000 in equity. California topped the list in terms of numbers with around 1.9 million people in negative equity.

Short Selling

Increasing negative equity and short selling has become a feature of the US real estate market. Short selling can be a time consuming process, as the mortgage lenders have to agree to write off the difference between what’s owed and what the house sale realizes. With job losses and falling house prices added to the mix, foreclosure has now become a reality for many Americans.

US Foreclosures

CNN Money reporting foreclosure statistics revealed a catastrophic rise of 81%. That was 861,664 real families that lost their homes. There was an element of surprise in some quarters at the rise, particularly in December, because of the moratoria put in place by Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae and other key lenders, which was aimed at delaying foreclosure action to householders in financial trouble.

There seems little good news on the horizon and to make matters worse there are, say CoreLogic, a further 2.2 million mortgaged properties, throughout the country, that are approaching negative equity. They are within 5% of being underwater.

Although the US administration has a mortgage plan in place to help homeowners refinance, Sam Khater at CoreLogic said: “It probably won’t be enough to solve the foreclosure problem.”