Empowerment Quality Engineering (EQE), an Omagh-based specialist in quality assurance and software testing, has won its first European business following an Invest Northern Ireland trade mission to Germany
The company, which took part in the mission to Germany earlier in the year, was assisted by Invest NI’s Trade Development Centre in Dusseldorf to identify several potential clients and then to line up meetings.
The Invest NI team in Dusseldorf provided advice and guidance to the company on how to do business successfully in Germany, and then worked with EQE Director Barry McManus on generating potential leads in key technology centres such as Dusseldorf, Berlin, Stuttgart and Bochum.
Mr McManus, commenting on the new business in Germany, said: “The quality of the support we received from Invest NI in Dusseldorf was excellent.
“We simply wouldn’t have secured the business without the very practical and expert guidance and assistance that the team there provided. They took time to understand our business, to explain business procedures in Germany, then pinpointed suitable contacts and prepared us for the meetings they had lined up. As a result, we had a number of very positive meetings, one of which led directly to our first export deal.
“Our interest in Germany was sparked by an e-mail invitation from Invest NI to join the mission. While we hadn’t been considering Germany then, we were looking for new business opportunities outside Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland.
“I thought the chance to gain some first hand knowledge and experience in such an exacting European market was too good to miss. Going to such a sophisticated and challenging marketplace was probably the best possible way to find out if we could compete in Europe.
“Winning the business in Berlin shows that we can do so. Invest NI weighed in behind us, helping us with essential in-market intelligence and with support on the ground that gave us confidence in the meetings and the negotiations that followed,” he added.
Dr Vicky Kell, welcoming EQE’s success in Germany, said: “This is a very encouraging development for a smaller technology company in one of Europe’s toughest markets. It’s an excellent example of what can be achieved by a company taking a strategic approach to the market and taking advantage of our broad range of programmes, including trade missions and in-market support.
“The company has worked particularly closely with staff at our centre in Dusseldorf and has benefited substantially from their knowledge of the German market and the guidance provided in developing business contacts. Our staff in Dusseldorf has a wealth of expertise and experience on business procedures in Germany.”