FedEx committed to customers' needs
International courier giant FedEx sponsors the Excellence in Exporting category in the Belfast Telegraph Business Awards 2016 in association with British Airways. The company, which opened a hub in Carrickfergus in 2011, describes its operations here.
Q. How many people does FedEx employ here?
A. Helping to build employment among the local community, FedEx has created new job opportunities in Belfast for 50 team members. Additionally, each new job in the logistics industry creates another three jobs in related industries.
Q. How would FedEx describe the Northern Ireland market?
A. Simply put the Northern Irish economy is ambitious and increasingly dynamic.
In the past it has been dominated by manufacturing industry and agriculture, but there has been a shift over the last 30 years to a more service-based economy, including the public sector.
Sectors such as wholesale, retail, manufacturing, business and professional services are all vital, while key sectors of investment in Northern Ireland include business services, financial services, ICT and renewables. The computer industry continues to contribute greatly to exports, while financial technology, cyber security and television production are all fast-growing industries.
Q. What areas does FedEx foresee for expansion?
A. There's a world of opportunity in today's international marketplace. Thanks especially to the huge increase in e-commerce, international trade continues to open up many doors to businesses in Northern Ireland.
Exports play a key role in boosting the economy by creating jobs and speeding up commercial growth. When it comes to exporting for the first time, there's certainly no one-size-fits-all approach - but this is where your logistics provider can help. They'll be able to advise you on how to reach new markets and achieve success overseas.
Q. FedEx is sponsoring the Excellence in Exporting category - how would FedEx assess the health of exports in NI at the minute?
A. Exports from Northern Ireland are doing well at the moment, particularly among smaller businesses who are the lifeblood of the economy.
At FedEx Express we work with businesses who have never exported, and who come to us looking for support and guidance. What we're able to tell them is, with the right support from an expert logistics provider, exporting can be a lot more straightforward than they think, allowing them to reap the rewards without impacting on their domestic business.
Q. What more can be done to increase exports?
A. As is the case with all mature European economies, Northern Ireland's future prosperity will hinge on lessening its reliance on neighbouring fellow-mature markets, and connecting with high-potential and high-growth markets in the US and Asia.
One classic dilemma for business owners is often the question whether and at what point a company should expand abroad. This depends very much on the circumstances of the individual entrepreneur. You need detailed knowledge of the respective market and a logistical setup which meets both the market conditions and the requirements of the respective product.
At FedEx, we are committed to our customers in Northern Ireland and are well positioned to help them develop their business through access to a wide market. Customers benefit from improved connectivity through an extended ground and flight network which offers greater choice, more flexibility through later pick-up times, and increased availability of transatlantic next-day-service to North America.
In particular, our daily flight from Belfast International has improved access for exporting firms and offers enhanced inbound connectivity.
The awards up for grabs
1. Excellence in Marketing
2. Excellence in Exporting, sponsored by FedEx
3. Excellence in the Development of Management and Leadership, sponsored by the Department for Employment and Learning (DEL)
4. Excellence in Innovation
5. Best Use of Digital and/or Social Media
6. Young Businessperson of the Year, sponsored by Almac
7. Excellence in Technology
8. Best Small/Medium Business
9. Excellence in Corporate Social Responsibility
10. Outstanding Contribution to the Tourism and/or the Hospitality Industry
Judges' Awards, sponsored by British Airways:
11. Businessperson of the Year
12. The overall Business of the Year
High-profile publicity a boon for all companies
The closing date for entries is 12 noon on March 18.
To enter the awards please log on to www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/business-awards.
Winners of each of the Belfast Telegraph Business Awards will enjoy the high profile of positive publicity based on an assessment made by our professional judging panel.
The gala awards dinner will take place on Thursday, April 21, at the Culloden Hotel, Holywood.
A table of 10 is £1,200 plus VAT and individual places are £130 plus Vat.
For further information on the awards contact Sarah Weir (JPR) on firstname.lastname@example.org or call 028 9076 0066.