When International Expansion Doesn't Go as Planned

 
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Despite your best intentions, hard work, and diligent planning, sometimes your expansion into a new territory doesn’t quite go as expected. You might find yourself with an operational footprint in a country that doesn’t reflect your current business needs. Perhaps you’ve outgrown your initial business plan (great!), or you’re facing a merger, acquisition or joint venture opportunity? Or, maybe you need to wind down operations completely and exit the country.

Whatever situation you’re facing, changing your operations on the ground in a foreign territory can often be more challenging than setting them up in the first place. There are many obligations and requirements that must be addressed, and they often have an impact on one another. Here are four:

  1. Track your corporate footprint.

The corporate footprint you established initially may not be right for your current business needs. Be sure to understand what your corporate entity is approved to do before you start making changes to actual operations. You should also fully understand any obligations you have committed to with a development authority, or another government body authorizing your presence in the jurisdiction. Even if your proposed change in operations is not restricted, you will want to fully understand the new commercial flows in and out of the country before proceeding. Don’t get caught with an unexpected tax hit, import/export requirement, or treasury restriction after it’s too late to plan around the issue.

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