News in brief: British products; China, finance

News in brief
News in brief

The appeal of British-made products

Brompton Bicycles CEO and ambassador for the International Festival for Business 2016 Will Butler-Adams has published an article claiming that UK exports could improve the appeal of their products and benefit financially from labelling their products as ‘Made in Britain.’

The claim is supported by a study from the Centre of Economics and Business Research, which revealed that UK exporters could benefit from a premium of up to £2.1bn by branding products in such a way.

However, Whittingham Riddell tax partner Duncan Montgomery has warned that “exports particularly to Europe and the US are on the rise in most SME sectors, where it needs care is ensuring that the benefit of £2.1 billion converts to real profits and not just thin margins. Market value of products shipped overseas can fail to convert into real market penetration and bottom line profit unless care is taken with the route to market, particularly for products in a more mature, commoditised market space.”

Montgomery explained that excess margins for distributors can lead ultimately to low-value work clogging up the process. It is crucial that the real effects of export are quantified and made best use of.

Chinese banks at the forefront of financial innovation

Magpie, a financial services provider, has secured deals with two of China’s biggest banks to roll out its Smart Wallet services. Magpie’s Smart Wallet helps customers keep an eye on their wallet using a tech tracker that prevents the loss of your valuables by sounding an alarm when your phone and wallet are separated.

Mainland China is widely considered to be at the forefront of financial innovation in the global banking sector, with around 390 million Chinese citizens already signed up to use mobile banking in a market of 1.3 billion, according to data from Accenture. This represents 40 per cent of the people worldwide who bank by phone.

CEO of Magpie Stephen Kennedy commented: “There is a digital revolution underway in China that is changing the way people manage their finances. Chinese consumers don’t only want but expect to be able to manage their money from their smart device. The big banks have had a challenge developing innovative technology quickly enough to compete with nimbler players in the sector.”