Ideas with Impact
UNB Faculty of Management

Planning real world export strategies

Author: Ideas with Impact

Posted on Jun 6, 2017

Category: Programs , Students

A group of UNB business students on the Fredericton campus stepped into the roles of consultants last winter as they worked with local businesses and entrepreneurs interested in exporting. The students were members of the Export Market Entry course taught by Export marketing students met with their partnering companies and mentors at Planet professor, Dr. Stephen Grant, and as they learned the theory of export marketing, they applied it directly to export plans for their partnering companies.

The Export Market Entry course has been taught many times in the past with students working with real companies interested in exporting, but the difference this year is the class partnered with Ignite Fredericton’s Export Igniter pilot program. “This allowed students in the course to work with a group of companies that had been well selected in advance by Ignite Fredericton and its partners (including Opportunities New Brunswick),” said Grant.

Additionally, Export Igniter’s programming introduced students to several subject matter experts, including staff with such agencies as
• Global Affairs Trade Commissioner Service
• Canadian Manufacturers & Exporters
• Export Development Corporation
• Stiletto Consulting
• Export-Able Consulting
• Learnsphere
• Alianco Translation Assistance Program
• McInnes Cooper
• Opportunities NB

Students also worked with mentors, established successful exporters from the business community who had been paired with each partnering firm or entrepreneur.

Six companies in total were involved in the program; these included Red Rover Cider, Simptek, Marr’s Sweet Syrup, Ginger Design, Unforgotten Metal Art, and Mayday Group.

Hilliary Baird, a fourth year BBA student completing an honours in marketing, said that, “The Export Market Entry course was one of the more valuable classes I have taken during my time at UNB. As a student, I got to step into the role of a consultant to develop a market export plan for an actual company.”

At the beginning of the term, students were divided into groups and then assigned to a company. Once they learned their company’s goals, each group set out to research the target market area, identify opportunities and then prepare strategic plans. On the last day of class, the students presented their research and marketing plans to their partners, other members of the class, program partners and community stakeholders.

UNB’s Faculty of Business Administration and Ignite Fredericton formed a formal partnership in 2016, which connects students and faculty with local businesses and entrepreneurs. The cooperation between the Export Market Entry course and the Export Igniter program is a result of this partnership; Ignite’s clients benefited by having access to academic expertise and a team of inspired young professionals, while the students got to experience first-hand what it is like to put their classroom learning to work for a real company.

“I was able to develop practical skills through working with the entrepreneurs, learn from subject matter experts in relevant industries, and network with likeminded professionals in the community,” said Baird. “Best of all, I got to be a part of growing a local business!”

For more information, contact Liz Lemon-Mitchell.

Learn more about our Export Partnering Program.