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Exports – Ni’S Perspective

Exports – Ni’S Perspective







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  • Thank you for your kind introduction. Thank you Barbara Mooney and Karen Parker for inviting me to present at this year’s Texas Global Trade Summit.
  • I will divide my short talk into three parts:First, I’ll start with an overview of national instruments so that you can compare the makeup of our business model and markets to yours. Then, I’ll follow with a brief description of the Risks and Rewards of exporting.Then, the main part of the presentation will be our experience in growing our international business from start-up mode, through country development and finally to Global Integration.
  • We have been in business for over 30 years. We started our formal international expansion in the late 80’s with our Tokyo office. Last year’s sales were over $800 million dollars. We were not immune to the downturn, but we have faired relatively well compared to our peers at -20% growth and still profitable. Our current market cap is over 2 billion. We employ around 5,000 people in 40 different countries. Around 2,000 of them are engineers.
  • With regards to our customers, we play in the Automated Test, the embedded electronic and the Industrial measurement and control markets. If you own a sophisticated smart phone, chances our equipment is at the end of the production line testing its functionality, before it gets shipped to distributors around the world. No industry is larger than 15% of our business. We sold to over 25,000 customers in 100 countries around the World last year. About ¼ of our sales are Software. The HW sales are tightly integrated with our SW (LabVIEW)Many of our decisions on how to enter international markets are based on our belief on the direct approach, heavy direct marketing (seminars, events) and close partnerships with VAR resellers and integrators.
  • Why export: We obviously believed that we can grow sales by reaching new customers in our defined market outside of the US.We later on found it very valuable to operate internationally. We have access to innovative ideas on how your products are used – this feedback gives us new ideas on improving our products. In addition, there are many new operational ideas we collect from our team around the World that allows us to get better back home.Another reason we have learned to be very important is to prevent our future competitor from finding a profit pool, and funding your demise in the future. We now fear, that the next NI may come from China, India or a developing market.
  • We have learnt that exporting is time, money and energy consuming. In addition, it is risky. We now know not to underestimate the “ human factors”We understand that we have to ensure not to run afoul with Export Control laws. We need to deal with denied entity lists, embargoed countries.The foreign corrupt practices act codifies the antibribery provisions of the US Department of Justice. “In general, the FCPA prohibits corrupt payments to foreign officials for the purpose of obtaining or keeping business. “In other words, it prevents executives from doing things that may be considered standard operating procedure in other countries.Fragmentation and misalignment: We now know that operating remote branches around the World requires a balance between freedom of operation and trust, with a clear mandate of tight alignment on strategy. Distance, language and cultural differences makes this challenging.We have learned that investing in travel, training, and even dedicated people in Austin to work with the international operations is a necessitive not a luxury. We invest heavily on “commonization” of culture and values. The objective is to mimic the environment of NI in each large branch around the World.
  • I will now share our experience developing international branches from Market Entry , through to Country Development, and the final stage for some of the branches; global integration.
  • The framework I will use in each of the stages will be the following:First: I will talk about the main objective of the branch Then: I will mention what were the major tasks we did in order to achieve the objective.I will end with few words of traits of the best leaders for the branch at a given stage.
  • EntryDetermine right business model, Establish presence, Learn operating environment, Select partnersEstablish the brand, generate demand, establish university presence.Sales & supportEntrepreneurial manager who is creative and flexibleExperience in starting operations in developing countries
  • Objective: seek positive p/linfluence market placeadvance multiple corporate initiatives, influence roadmaps back on the head officeHowmanage awareness of operations at head officebecome a pundit in the industry (members or organizations, talks, etc)build brand awarenessWhoexperience communicating with complex corporate matrix (functional, product, strategy)Strong ties with corporate headquarters
  • Global IntegrationEstablish full integration of branch into regional and global effortsFurther integrated into regional and global effortsSenior manager able to work with several business division
  • In summary, we at NI realized that in order to grow our business in the niche we have decided to play, in order to get the best innovative ideas from many customers, and in order to protect our future viability as a company, we needed to EXPORT.And I hope you agree that you and your company should also: JUST DO IT!
  • http://bit.ly/texastradesummit

Exports – Ni’S Perspective Exports – Ni’S Perspective Presentation Transcript

  • Exports – NI’s perspective
    Victor Mieres VP Asia/RoW
  • Agenda
    National Instruments Overview
    Exports: Risk/Reward
    Stages of Country Development
  • Founded 1976
    $821 million in 2008
    Market capitalization $2.1 billion
    5,000 employees
  • ATE, Embedded, and Industrial
    25,000 customers in 40 countries
    Average order size $3,000
    60% outside of US
  • Exports - Rewards
    Grow sales by reaching new customers
    Get innovation ideas for future products
    Neutralize your future competitors
  • Exports - Risks
    Export control
    Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
    Fragmentation and misalignment
  • Market Entry
    Country Development
    Global Integration
    Stages of Country Development
  • Objective
    How to achieve it
    Who should lead
  • Stage 1: Market Entry
    Learn operating environment
    Build relationship with partners
    Select location
    Establish a local brand
    Entrepreneurial, flexible, creative manager
  • Stage 2: Country Development
    Seek positive P/L
    Influence market place and HQ
    Become a pundit in the industry
    Manage awareness at HQ
    Executive able to work in a corporate matrix
  • Stage 3: Global Integration
    Integrate into regional and global efforts
    Frequent travel of VP and C-level executives
    Executive with strong ties to leadership
  • Just do it!
  • http://bit.ly/texastradesummit