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Atradius supports Alliance Group

As leading New Zealand meat exporter, Alliance, puts its new strategy into operation and begins its infiltration into new markets, it continues to return to Atradius and EFCIS / ICBA (UK) for its trade credit insurance needs.
“The last few years have been difficult for every sector, but for the meat industry, in particular, we have had our fair share of setbacks.  Political conflict continues to pose problems for exporters such as ourselves; Brexit had a huge impact on labour shortages and the free movement of goods around the EU, and the war in Ukraine is further exacerbating shipping problems,” explains Donna Smith, Regional General Manager of UK & Europe, Alliance Group.

“In New Zealand, Veterinary Certificates have been a requirement for quite some time.  Post-Brexit, the same rules were introduced for the UK.  Although this hasn’t impacted our trade to the UK, it means that our route to market from the UK to mainland Europe has been disrupted, prompting us to branch out to new customers until a Free Trade Agreement has been ratified.”

The global rise in inflation is already hitting tight profit margins in the industry.  “A trading loss of £100K for a <2% net margin business will mean we need to generate an additional £5.7m in new business sales to replace this bottom-line profit, which is significant.  What’s more, the seasonality of the produce puts pressure on consumers to buy, causing stock to move quickly, particularly in an increasingly competitive market,” says Smith.
“Thankfully, EFCIS / ICBA UK and Atradius have helped us to navigate our way into new markets by ensuring we have a thorough risk assessment plan in place.  Having worked in partnership with both companies for the past six years, their knowledge and insight of the industry played an integral role in the success of Alliance in the UK today.”
The cover of non-payment that trade credit insurance provides has given the Alliance Group the confidence to make educated investments knowing that it is dealing with creditworthy partners, buyers and customers.  “The last two years have seen a number of unforeseen circumstances arise – and without access to the up-to-date information on companies that Atradius has access to, we might not have been able to securely expand around Europe and further afield, despite not having a physical presence.”

“Since the COVID-19 pandemic, we have continued to expand into the home food delivery boxes, which has enabled us to gain instantaneous feedback from consumers.  This initiative was supported by having several conversations with Atradius and EFCIS on how we could be supported in these expanding markets to survive and grow with the changing landscape. Information and protection have been two of the most prominent benefits we’ve seen since our relationship with Atradius began, and what we’ve learnt from our relationship with them we’re now working on emulating with our own customers,” comments Smith.

Looking ahead, the future is looking bright for the meat industry.  “At Alliance, we’re looking forward to our continued relationship with the trade credit insurance sector.  If the past few years have taught us anything, it’s to stay ahead of the game and work in harmony with our partners and customers to better understand their needs.”

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