The export elite’s best advice

On Monday 28 September, the Export Prize 2020 will be handed out by Norway’s Minister of Trade and Industries, Iselin Nybø. The Prize is awarded in cooperation by GIEK, Export Credit Norway an Innovation Norway. Among the nominees three NME members made it to the top 10. Innovation Norway have had a talk with seven of the nominees about their key to successful export. You can read the interviews on Innovation Norway’s website here (Norwegian only). Below you can read the interviews with our nominated members – Brunvoll, Optimarin and Navtor.  Navtor is now beeing one of the three finalists for the award!

Brunvoll:

Which countries have you exported to?

Brunvoll has been exporting products and services since the late 60’s. We have exported to most markets where ships are being built, and service is performed at the same location. The largest markets in a historical perspective are the United States, Brazil, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Finland, Denmark, Poland, Spain, Italy, Turkey, Singapore, South Korea and China. Today, South Korea, China, Turkey, Spain and Germany are the most prominent, says Per Olav Løkseth, Executive Vice President, Sales & Marketing at Brunvoll.

What kind of international advice or services have you benefited most from?

Brunvoll has traditionally related to other Norwegian export companies and agent networks when establishing in new markets. Until the mid-nineties, the Norwegian Export Council was an important driving force in our internationalization. In recent times, Innovation Norway’s offices abroad have been used extensively for local events.

What advice would you give to others who are going to export?

The best advice we can give is to use existing networks such as Norwegian Maritime Exporters and the member companies here. Innovation Norway and Norwegian consulates also have a central role through their network and offices abroad.

Optimarin:

Which countries do you export to?


Optimarin is one of the world’s leading players in systems for environmentally friendly purification of ballast water on board vessels. The export share is more than 90 percent. We export to 35 countries, the largest markets being China, Germany, USA, UK, Japan, the Netherlands, Singapore, Hong Kong, Turkey and Greece, says Leiv Kallestad, CEO at Optimarin.

What kind of international advice have you benefited the most from?

We received much of the best help from Innovation Norway when establishing in China and Japan in 2011-2012. Innovation Norway’s local employees at the Norwegian embassy were an important door opener for making contacts at a high level. We also attended a course in Chinese culture in connection with the establishment of an office in Shanghai. Otherwise, we have participated in several delegations under the auspices of Innovation Norway and established useful connections in Turkey and India.


What advice would you give to others who are going to export?

Use Innovation Norway’s network to find partners. When you enter into cultures you do not know and markets that operate in languages you don’t speak, it is of great value to use the network Innovation Norway has.

NAVTOR:

Which countries have you exported to?

We currently export navigation-related products and services to over 60 countries, says Børge Hetland, CCO at Navtor.

What kind of international advice have you benefited the most from?

We have not used international consulting, however we have a very good collaboration with Innovation Norway in connection with various marketing activities around the world.

In addition, we also have a good collaboration with Norwegian embassies several places around the world, especially Tokyo and Singapore.

What advice would you give to others who are going to export?

In order to sell/export to other countries, it is important to be present with local people in the country you are going to export to. As an example: Japanese sell best in Japan.

It is also important that you know the culture and business practice in the country you operate in, as well as that you make yourself visible, and show that you are serious by being present at seminars, trade fairs and conferences.

© 2020 Norwegian Maritime Exporters