Stitch & Story, a knitting kit manufacturer, has seen sales increase by 200% in the last year as a direct result of exporting to the US, following support from the Department for International Trade (DIT).
Based in Dartford, Kent, the business distributes to US marketplace Uncommon Goods, as well as independent gift stores and retailers. The exporting opportunity was secured after Stitch & Story exhibited its products at consumer trade show, NY Now, with support from DIT.
The trade show highlighted an international demand for the products, and prompted the business owners to set-up a US purchasing arm on its website.
The success of Stitch & Story’s international expansion is being celebrated in DIT’s Exporting is GREAT campaign. They are one of 30+ companies – encompassing every sector and region – being championed in the campaign, which looks to inspire and support businesses up and down the country to export.
Since beginning exporting last year, the business has doubled its turnover and expanded its team from two to five employees in nine months. In total, 50% of revenue is generated as a direct result of exporting.
In the UK, its products are stocked at several retailers, including Liberty, John Lewis and Fenwick’s.
After the success of exporting to the US, the business now has its sights set on exporting to Australia, Switzerland, Germany and France.
Jenny Lam, Director and Co-founder of Stitch & Story, said: “After securing deals with some of Britain’s most-loved department stores, we wanted to maximise revenue potential and decided to set our sights further afield.
“We knew that getting our products in front of the right buyers was the key to international expansion. The NY Now tradeshow, supported by The Department for International Trade, helped us secure a deal with Uncommon Goods, which paved our way into the US market.
“It’s no secret that there are plenty of perceived barriers when it comes to exporting. Custom arrangements and tax regulations can be a bit daunting, but there’s plenty of help available. Our trade advisors at the DIT provided us with legal advice, as well as sharing useful resources, which made the process far less alien.
“For any business owners considering exporting, it’s important to remember that there’s support available. If we can do it, other business like us can, too.”
Ben Raby, Regional Director for the South East at Department for International Trade, said: “It’s fantastic to see Stitch & Story grow its sales so significantly as a direct result of exporting in the past year.
“British brands have a strong international profile, so there’s certainly demand for products in overseas markets. Because of this, there’s huge potential for businesses like Stitch & Story looking to expand and grow revenue.
“We have 36 international trade advisors across the South East who can provide on-the-ground support for businesses like Stitch & Story.”
Firms looking for support should contact the DIT South East team at email@example.com. They can also visit www.great.gov.uk which gives UK businesses access to millions of pounds’ worth of potential overseas business, helping them start or increase exporting.
Produced by Citypress on behalf of the Department for International Trade.