Alix de Sagazan, Co-founder of AB Tasty, the French leader in online AB-testing, agreed to answer some questions over their international experience and gave us a few tips on how to successfully lead your company through the first steps of this challenging road. Hope you’ll enjoy and find it useful!
What decided you to expand your business internationally?
AB Tasty is the solution to optimize your website performance. It gives you performance indicators thanks to the software’s marketing tests results. This French software was working well in its home country, so we though it was easier to implement ourselves in countries where the market is similar as the French one. We are now established in UK, Germany and in Spain and have opened an office in Sydney. Moreover, the establishment of regional offices was necessary to fit with the customers location.
Which elements led to the success of your initiative?
We had a network of key contacts on site, native agents, who first enabled us to obtain market studies, knowledge of the business and social environment and who could bring a potential revenue in their country.
What are the challenges you faced during this process?
Beyond the legal diversity, which requires a certain time to adapt to, the contracts’ signature as well as a different language makes the process more complicated. Red tape was also an issue because every country works differently. Signing contracts from an other country as well as the language barrier make the process slower. Through these issues, we realized how important it was to be present on site with the right people.
Which mistake is to be avoided when going global?
Do not open an office without having contacts, on-site knowledge, except if you have a special opportunity or for an experiment, as we have done with our Sydney office. It is tempting to reproduce a successful model everywhere, but stretching a business is risky. Regional markets, and in our case the European one, are large enough, especially when a competing model already exists in an other region.
As entrepreneur, we need to exchange, share, we need to be supported by an international network of peers. Beeleev is more than useful to create this network. It is very helpful when we plan to establish our business in a new country. It is hard to take a leap of faith alone. With Beeleev, we gain advice, support from our peers and a feeling of safety.