Executive Briefings

Start-ups Face Serious Difficulty Getting Into Exporting

Sitting still flies in the face of everything Kathleen Hale's company stands for. Started less than two years ago in Washington, Rebel Desk sells treadmills and desks for professionals who prefer to stand and move while they work. It's ironic, then, that Hale’s company feels a bit stuck.

Start-ups Face Serious Difficulty Getting Into Exporting

In its first year in business, Rebel Desk sold and shipped more than $1m worth of products across the United States, a country where the notion of a standing desk is still somewhat novel. Naturally, the success here, as well as mounting inquiries from customers abroad, prompted Hale to look into the prospect of exporting her contraptions – particularly to places like Canada, Europe and Australia, where standing desks have been around for years and have become increasingly popular.

Right now, exporting simply isn't feasible – and that, Hale says, is a shame. The barriers are many, and for entrepreneurs like Hale, time and resources are limited. Simply learning about those barriers is only half the battle, she said. The entire exporting process probably needs to be streamlined before it becomes practical to start selling abroad.

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In its first year in business, Rebel Desk sold and shipped more than $1m worth of products across the United States, a country where the notion of a standing desk is still somewhat novel. Naturally, the success here, as well as mounting inquiries from customers abroad, prompted Hale to look into the prospect of exporting her contraptions – particularly to places like Canada, Europe and Australia, where standing desks have been around for years and have become increasingly popular.

Right now, exporting simply isn't feasible – and that, Hale says, is a shame. The barriers are many, and for entrepreneurs like Hale, time and resources are limited. Simply learning about those barriers is only half the battle, she said. The entire exporting process probably needs to be streamlined before it becomes practical to start selling abroad.

Read Full Article

Start-ups Face Serious Difficulty Getting Into Exporting