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Case study: Enterprise Ireland

How Enterprise Ireland used Go Exporting to help Irish companies enter the UK Local Authority market.


Enterprise Ireland has been approached by client companies for advice on how to market their products and services to the UK local authority market. 

At first sight, the structure and processes of the public sector seem difficult to follow and even more challenging to access. 

Go Exporting is a specialist in these areas and was approached to write a report to demystify the sector and support Enterprise Ireland in their goal to promote Irish exports to the UK. 

We were delighted to be chosen to provide the required support.

About the clients

Enterprise Ireland is the government organisation responsible for the development and growth of Irish enterprises in world markets. 

They work in partnership with Irish enterprises to help them start, grow, innovate and win export sales in global markets. 

In this way, they support sustainable economic growth, regional development and secure employment in Ireland. 

Here's how we supported Enterprise Ireland

Researched the UK Local Authority Market to provide a detailed report containing:

Structure of Authorities in England, Wales & Scotland

New Combined Authorities

Areas of responsibility

How councils work


Methods of service provision

Procurement processes

How to identify opportunities

The project

Local Authorities in England have a combined revenue expenditure budget for 2018-19 of £95.9b. Add on the £8.1b in Wales and the £11.1b in Scotland and it is easy to see why local authorities are a substantial draw for companies supplying relevant products and services. Not only is the potential there but also payments are secure.

The difficulties come in actually realising that potential. How do you know where the requirements are, who makes the decisions and what is the purchasing process? In short, how do you sell to the local authority market? 

Enterprise Ireland understands that, as with any sales process, it starts with really knowing and understanding your customer. You need to grasp the structure of the sector, how it has developed and speak the right language.

Hence it recognised the need to provide Irish companies with a roadmap to the sector in the UK in order to stimulate growth.

It’s not enough to think that you can sign up to some tender alert service and simply bid for the work. 99 times out of a 100 that will not work and you will have spent hours of time and effort for nothing. In most cases, by the tender stage, the decision-maker has at least a short-list of companies who have been involved from Day 1 in helping define the need, the specification, the pre-requisites, service levels etc. 

Go Exporting submitted our proposal to produce a report designed to give the knowledge needed in order to understand the local authority customer and the purchasing process.

We were delighted to be selected as the partner consultant for this exciting project. The final report was delivered on time by end March 2019 and we are currently working on Stage 2 of the project to provide details of specific areas of local authority priorities and investment.  

The method

Go Exporting has developed its own tried and tested process for carrying out research and compiling detailed reports of this kind which combines:

  • Desk Based Research
  • Personal Contacts and Interviews
  • Compiling the information into a clear, usable format
  • Applying the Experience and Expertise from 30+ years in International business 

The results

The project was completed on schedule and provided Enterprise Ireland with in-depth information on the UK local authority sector plus guidance on procurement methods and ways to identify opportunities. 

This report has been published by Enterprise Ireland and circulated to Irish companies looking to export into the UK with a specific interest in this sector of the market. 

Enterprise Ireland also plans to hold seminars and presentations on the report for regional groups with the first planned in Dublin.

There has been excellent feedback on the usefulness of the information to both Enterprise Ireland in its knowledge base and in providing practical assistance to Irish companies in planning their export strategy.

The response has been very positive and consequently, Enterprise Ireland has commissioned stage 2 of the project to provide information on specific investment opportunities and the current priorities of the UK Local Authority Market.

Client Feedback

“Mike Wilson carried out in-depth research and analysis and provided a professional, concise and clear report which we have published for our clients. We are looking forward to working on phase 2 of this project where Go Exporting will provide further insights into this sector.”

And finally...

We hope this Case Study has given you a feel for the effectiveness and impact a detailed market sector report can have in helping to expand exports in your target market.

Whether you are a Business, Chamber of Commerce, Trade Organisation or Government Body looking to promote local exports, Go Exporting helps support you develop a winning strategy to expand into international markets.

For further details please email or call +44 800 689 1423.