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Trading in a changing market

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I read with interest an overview by the Executive Director of Export NZ under the banner "What to do about the high NZ dollar". It seems our friends across the Tasman are having a very similar trade experience to ours. Trade terms are strong, commodity prices are good, but manufacturing is suffering . We also here have the spectre of falling retail sales, and the switch to online purchases due to a high AUD and big price variances when buying online. The market is changing, and changing quickly. There are the emerging economies producing in low cost environments, environmental concerns, growth opportunities moving to new markets in Latin America and Asia, and perhaps Africa once some stability is established. Historically if you produced a good quality item, found a market, then you had a business model that had some legs. The changes to domestic and international buying patterns and fast emergence of new competitors means that exporters really need to be on top of everything to stay in business. Being able to adapt and meet existing, and even future consumer needs will be an essential for any business. Just look at the market share of Nokia since the iphone and other smart phones hit the market. We have been insulated by the minerals and mining sector, and escaped the GFC, but changes in consumer preferences, and new competitors will impact on all businesses. And that’s apart from a high AUD. So to survive, a business has to be as expert and targeted in its marketing, packaging and customer service as it is in production quality. Australian business has in the main been very good at adapting to changing circumstances. How is your business adapting to global changes? To share your experiences contact petermace@aiex.com.au.

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