At Fifth Wheel Co. we are always working hard to expand our business and exporting our products across the globe is just one of the ways in which we achieve this.
Our export journey began in 2007 after attending the Dusseldorf Caravan Salon, largest caravan show in Europe. With a desire to explore market potential and see how well our products would be received overseas, we were delighted to receive several direct sales and lots of interest from the show.
In order for us to maximise export trade we made the strategic decision to start a dealer network. A partnership with Busching Tuning in Germany provides a reliable route into the German market and has given us the confidence to continue expanding our network into France with Müller-Tuning.
To date, international trade makes up a third of our overall sales with Germany being our predominant market, closely followed by France and New Zealand. We are very excited to be receiving more and more interest from Switzerland, Netherlands and Belgium and are keen to grow our global presence in Europe, as well as Asia as a new market.
There is no doubt that exporting overseas can be challenging but the wealth of advice, guidance and support we have received from the Welsh Government has been vital to our export growth and success, this includes:
- Financial support towards machinery costs.
- A dedicated export expert who has given us advice and carried out background research on dealers and businesses who are interested in partnering with us.
- Help with the financial costs of attending trade shows – such as Dusseldorf.
It was also a pleasure to welcome Sam Rowlands, MS for North Wales, to our factory in Rhuallt, who had nothing but praise for our existing export success and the way in which we design and manufacture many of our tourer components onsite, as well as how we help the environment by using recycled plastic bottles for our composite panel construction.
Additionally, as part of the Welsh Government’s campaign to encourage businesses in Wales to consider exporting, we were thrilled to be given the opportunity to go to Cardiff to take part in a case study to showcase our exporting achievements. This short film will be hosted on Business Wales’s website and across their social media channels over the coming months.
Exporting is core to our business growth, and this was evident during the pandemic when UK sales stagnated due to travel restrictions. A high volume of export sales at the end of 2020 allowed us to maintain production continuity until domestic restrictions were relaxed and we could resume our UK sales operations.
David Robinson, Design Manager says “We wouldn’t be where we are now if we hadn’t started exporting”.
“Export has been vital to our growth and not only is it positive for our sales revenue, we also have a much more diverse supply chain and a better understanding of the end user in different territories.”
With the help of Welsh Government advice and support, we are now working on increasing our dealer network both in Europe and internationally and hoping to double our export network in the next 2 years.