Melanie Teed-Murch has been with the retail chain since 1996.
The British Business Portal launches amid a 12% year-over-year increase in 2013 in trade between the two countries.
A new United Kingdom-based e-commerce site aims to alert British companies about business opportunities in Romania.
The British Business Portal, www.britishbusiness.ro, describes itself as a “networking platform focusing on offering information on various sectors of the Romanian economy: business opportunities, events, requests for partnerships, how to do business and relevant legislation.” Portal backers include the British Embassy in Bucharest, the Romanian capital; the government-backed export group UK Trade & Investment; and the British Romanian Chamber of Commerce.
“The British Business Portal contributes greatly as a first point of information to help and support British businesses interested in expanding to Romania,” says Raymond Breden, the chamber’s executive chairman. “The country has much to offer with lower costs in resources and facilities, its need to develop and its size and resources. Compared to other emerging markets, Romania has the added advantages of being a [European Union] member state and only three hours away from the U.K.”
The portal says that more than 4,000 U.K. companies operate in Romania. According to the Romanian embassy in the United Kingdom, trade between the two countries topped 3.28 billion euros (US$4.52 billion) in 2013, up about 11.9% from nearly 2.93 billion euros (US$4.04 billion) the year before. The main imports to Romania from the United Kingdom are: machinery and electrical parts—which accounted for almost 31% of those imports in 2013—textiles and clothing, vehicles, aircraft and transport equipment, base metals and related items, and plastics.
Those trade patterns seem reflected in the handful of “business opportunity” listings available on the site today. One such listing, for the central Romanian city of Avrig, describes an initiative to develop renewable energy sources and a smart grid infrastructure. The project, described as though part of a tender, calls for rooftop solar panels and wind turbines, along with waste management and energy efficiency programs, among other features.