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Make sure you get paid when trading overseas

Trading overseas can be an excellent way for companies to grow, increase profits and build their reputation as a global player. To build a successful internationalisation strategy, companies must ensure they are working with trustworthy partners to minimize and manage effectively the risk of not getting paid.

According to Bibby Financial most recent SMEs: Unlocking the Road for Recovery Report :

  • 20% of UK SME’s have experienced bad debt, writing off an average of £18,929 lost in 2020 ;

  • SMEs have significant sums outstanding in unpaid invoices, with an average of £116,376 owed and;

  • 40% of SMES reported that customers were taking longer to pay than usual

  • The wholesaler sector has been one of the most hugely impacted by payment issues with 24% being affected and also with an average outstanding in unpaid invoice of £203,400

When the debt is with an overseas customer who could be facing insolvency, the challenges to getting paid become more complex as a company has to act by legal means in order to obtain debt collection from the customer and this can be highly time consuming and costly. In some cases, the costs of recovery may outweigh the actual debt itself, leaving many MSMEs out of pocket and discourage of selling internationally.

At the Chamber, we constantly advice traders – whether doing business domestically or overseas; and whether they are experienced or not, to ensure they are dealing with reputable and trustworthy partners.

In our efforts to help more UK SMEs to trade internationally and ensuring they get paid, the Chamber has teamed up with Engage, a Marston Holdings Company, an award-winning collection agency with extensive experience in the UK and one of Europe's largest providers of externalised collection services for both public and private sectors.

With over 100 years of High Court enforcement experience, Marston Holdings collects the outstanding debts of a lender or a business and can pursue them legally. Marston Holdings, with over 1,000 enforcement agents, works with the UK government and businesses, handling around 1.5 million cases per year. Marston Holdings ensure businesses get paid, which helps to reduce their supply chain risk, secure their growth, and save them time by collecting their debts.

In collaboration with Engage, a Marston Holdings company, we can also help you conduct due diligence on Overseas and UK customers and suppliers to better assess and manage insolvency risks.

Ready to re-engage meaninfully with your customers and recover bad debt?

  • With a no win-no fee policy, members have everything to gain and nothing to lose. Email us at to arrange a free consultation.

  • Join our FREE Debt Collection Bitesize Session and Business Clinic on the 15th July for where our experts will provide useful insights on how to re-engage with customers and will also meet delegates on one to one basis for more tailor support.

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