Tacit Sims, a Milton Keynes educational software developer, has won a major new contract with a leading university in Hong Kong as part of its overseas expansion plans.
The company, established in 2014, designs and develops educational software used by colleges, universities, companies and entrepreneurs in several countries in Europe and Asia-Pacific.
Its most popular product is called IPSim, a real-time strategy game where players role-play as the management team of a company. The objective of the game is to win by amassing the most virtual cash and valuable technologies to teach students about intellectual property and royalty income.
They are now exporting its software to several Hong Kong universities, the latest of which is a three-year licence with City University of Hong Kong.
The deal came shortly after the firm visited the GET China 2017 trade show in Beijing, through support from Heathrow Airport’s World of Opportunity grant. The visit was supported by advisers at the Department for International Trade (DIT), who the business has worked with since it was founded.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that we wouldn’t have won this new contract if I hadn’t had the opportunity and encouragement from DIT to visit Asia to meet prospective clients in person.”
In March DIT hosted the GREAT Festival of Innovation in Hong Kong (21st–24th March) to showcase some of the best British businesses, like Tacit Sims, to the Asian market. The Festival brings together business leaders, Government Ministers and the latest ground-breaking technologies from the UK and across Asia.
Wesley Randle, Co-Founder of Tacit Sims, said: “We’ve experienced great success both domestically and overseas. British universities use our software and we’re now selling to corporates and IP firms as IPSim is becoming established – we currently export to several countries worldwide. Asia is the next big growth market for us, which is why it was so important for us to visit the GET China trade show last year.
“The team at DIT has played an important role in our success, not least by providing us with several grants soon after we were established to visit prospective clients in Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and the United States. There’s no doubt in my mind that we wouldn’t have won this new contract if I hadn’t had the opportunity and encouragement from DIT to visit Asia to meet prospective clients in person. Sales give us comfort that our products are useful but encouragement and support from organisations like DIT and Heathrow Airport demonstrate that our product has international potential and translates well outside our home market.
“When you’re at the start of your exporting journey, you do tend to initially lack business contacts in target markets as well as the confidence needed to take the plunge – but DIT can help overcome these barriers. If we can do it, so can others.”
Alan Pain, Regional Director, East of England, Department for International Trade, said: “It’s estimated that by 2020, half of all higher education courses will be delivered online and it’s encouraging to see ambitious local firms like Tacit Sims tapping into this growing trend.
“When you’re at the start of your exporting journey, you do tend to initially lack business contacts in target markets as well as the confidence needed to take the plunge – but DIT can help overcome these barriers.”
“Britain has a global reputation for excellence and demand for UK-made products is constantly growing, making now the ideal time for business to either increase their exporting operations or consider exporting for the first time.
“We recognise that securing the right contacts in overseas markets can be a barrier to growth and we’ve got a database of tried and trusted partners who can assist. DIT has 30 International Trade Advisers across the East of England who are dedicated to providing support to companies to ensure they achieve their full potential.”