Polish companies are more and more eager to launch foreign operations. As much as 90% of the largest manufacturing businesses in the country are present in some way outside Poland.
It is becoming a common enough situation, that a special report has been published by Bloomberg Businessweek Polska magazine, which belongs to one of the most influential information agencies in the world.
According to BBP, the value of polish investments abroad has reached 39 billion dollars and one in three polish companies present only on the domestic market is considering international expansion. 90% of Polish businesses investing on foreign markets consider that in order to maximize profits and for 40% of them the priority is to get ahead of the competitors, increasing margins and finally the territorial diversification which reduces risks.
The most popular way for expanding beyond borders is export. 90% of enterprises present abroad use this channel. A little above half of them find external partners. A quarter opens foreign branches and one in five locates their manufacturing facilities there.
Among the most important directions of expansion there are mostly Western Europe (88% of votes), Central Europe and Balkans (71%), Eastern Europe (61%) and Asia (38%). The least common directions are the Latin America and Australia pointed out by 12% of the respondent.
There were Polish foreign investments, that got a lot publicity – the acquisition of a refinery in Możejki, Lithuania and the takeovers made by KGHM in Canada and Chile. BBP decided however, to show a different couple of examples for successful international development.
First of these examples is a company called DOOR Group. A consulting service established in 1992 as a franshise of the Dutch consulting company DOOR International. The Polish branch quickly strengthened and opened its own subdivisions. Finally in 2011 it gathered enough resources to buy out all 100% of shares in DOOR International and form the Group as it is today. As a consulting business, DOOR Group advises on programmes of changing the organizational culture or projects regarding development of competencies in the largest corporations worldwide like Philip Morris Polska, Hyundai, Sony or Microsoft.
A second good example according to BBP is a company based in Wrocław, called REC Global, which noted an incredible growth rate. It began in 2007, when a few ex-workers of Siemens decided to launch their own business and start developing software for telecommunication and automotive leaders. After only a year the company has opened its branch in Germany and then started to establish such subdivisions in places giving easy access to qualified IT staff – Żylin in Slovakia and the capital of Croatia Zagreb. In 2009 REC bought a business named Cinterion WM Polska from Germans. Cinterion deals with communication between devices (M2M). Presently, REC Global has branches in Great Britain, USA, Netherlands, Germany and Slovakia. 95% of its income comes from foreign transactions.
BBP points to a fact that not all projects go through unhindered. Frequently the difficulty lies in a failure to understand the local market, especially in countries we deem to be culturally similar, although they have a completely different labour market.