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An incubator provides your company with its own office in 15 countries

Does your company dream of internationalisation and its own office in a specific country? Then the solution is just a few clicks away. The Trade Council’s incubator scheme offers your company an easy and straightforward way to lease affordable space at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ facilities around the world.

An incubator provides your company with meeting rooms, designated office workstations, customised advisory support and your company’s name sign at a well-known address. The Trade Council’s incubator scheme is your company’s short-cut to internationalisation through an affordable and quick way to set up its own office in a new country.

At present, The Trade Council offers incubator solutions at 23 of Denmark’s embassies, consulates-general and trade commissions in 15 countries around the world – from South Africa to Germany, from China to Canada. Your company can choose between a physical or virtual incubator.

“A physical incubator is a plug-and-play solution. When you arrive in Chicago, everything is set up in advance - everything from the printer and internet to the desk and coffee maker. The company is up and running immediately and can thereby spend its time on what is important; the customers” says Jakob Skaarup Nielsen, Consul General at the Consulate General of Denmark in Chicago.

Internationalisation through your own office can be several things. Whilst the physical incubator offers access to everything from a furnished office to weekly export sparring, the virtual incubator is an offer to companies simply looking for a physical address that can receive mail and a telephone number in the particular country.
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"Often the challenge of selling products and services in the USA is the need to have a local presence, because that’s what Americans want. If an incubator's customer phones, we take the call at the Consulate General and forward it. The same applies to the handling of mail. The customers thereby have the impression that they are talking to the company’s American office."
Jakob Skaarup Nielsen Consul General, Consulate General of Denmark in Chicago

Each mission normally has between three and five physical incubators. At the Consulate General in Chicago there are three incubator offices and the number of possible virtual incubators is unlimited. At present, there are 10 incubators, which include HydraSpecma A/S, NISSEN Energy and LSM Pumper.

In Ghana, the offer of an incubator has also been a success. Here, the Bluetown internet company has experienced how conducting its daily business at the Danish embassy has helped the company establish cooperation with the Ghanaian government.

“Bluetown has been operating in Ghana for two years. We started at the Danish embassy in an incubator agreement and we have benefited hugely from the cooperation we have had with The Trade Council and the Danish embassy in Ghana,” says Ole De Leeneer, country manager for Bluetown in Ghana, adding:

”If a Danish company comes to a country like Ghana and wants to do the same as us, then it’s a huge undertaking if you don’t have the opportunity that we have had in securing The Trade Council’s help at the Danish embassy.”

A successful incubator arrangement ends after two years with the company becoming so established in the particular country that it can stand on its own two feet and find its own office premises once it leaves the secure surroundings of the Danish mission.

”The incubator scheme is the optimal solution for SMEs who would like to expand their exports to other markets in an easy and flexible way with low startup costs. The companies experience such great success with the scheme that they often want to remain part of it beyond the two years maximum, which unfortunately is not possible” says Jakob Skaarup Nielsen.