Our guide to doing business in India
Bewildering and brilliant, India is arguably the most engaging, spiritual and life-affirming country in the world. Boasting one of the fastest growing global economies, India is the second largest country in the world by population and the largest English speaking nation on the planet.
The UK is the third largest investor in the Indian market and £8.59 billion of British goods and services were imported into India in 2014, with export opportunities available to businesses of all shapes and sizes.
Benefits for your business
India is a market that requires a lot of patience and a long-term strategy to be successful, but rest assured there are many lucrative benefits on offer for UK businesses that choose India:
- English is a widely spoken language
- Personal incomes are rising, creating a whole new middle class consumer market
- It’s a fast-growing economy with one of the world’s largest youth populations
- Cities are expanding; the country now has over 50 cities with over a million people
- A common legal and administrative system
Researching the market
India should never be treated as one single national market, instead you should consider each of its 29 states as a separate country that could each need a tailored approach. Moving from state to state, the language, cultural practices and preferences may be entirely different to that of the last.
A mixture of desk based research and market visits will help you research market entry requirements in each specific state. Regional plans and good local research are a necessity.
Look to determine whether:
- there is a market for your product or service
- your pricing is competitive
- you need to localise your product
- you need to adapt your business model
In order to maintain growth, India has removed the majority of its trade barriers to make it a more attractive proposition for businesses. Huge investment potential exists in various sectors, including:
- Life sciences
- Skills and Education
- Food and Drink
Language and culture
Important things to be aware of:
- India is hierarchical, even in the office environment
- Small talk particularly about the family, is highly valued when building relationships
- Using your right hand in all situations
- Always having a business card to present
- Business contacts are to be adressesd Mr/Mrs/Ms or Sri/Smt (Srimati) with surname
- Refer to superiors/senior in age as ‘sir’ or ‘madam’
- Do not use first names unless invited to do so
Are you interested in finding new customers in India?
Our locally based market specialists can help you identify and secure new export opportunities. We'll work closely with your business to deliver a comprehensive market entry strategy that ensures sales success and a return on investment.