#79 | Localize your Quotes

Mark Ridley, Co-founder and COO of GreenShootsFX talks to us today about cross boarder payments or “FX” (foreign exchange).  

With over 30 years in international banking, he is loaded with suggestions and solutions for avoiding common mistakes in international payments and receipts.  

He explains why you lose when you work only in US dollars and how to avoid the #1 issue of not knowing what you don’t know about FX. 

Mark passionately and clearly entertains and educates us in this important area of global marketing. 

LINKS:

Website - https://greenshootsfx.com/

 

Connect with Wendy - https://www.linkedin.com/in/wendypease/ 

Connect with Mark -

https://www.linkedin.com/in/markridley73/  

mark.ridley@greenshootsfx.com 

Music: Fiddle-De-Dee by Shane Ivers - https://www.silvermansound.com 

 

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ATTENTION:  Below is a machine generated transcription of the podcast.  Yes, at Rapport International, we talk a lot about how machine translation is not good quality.  Here you see an example of what a machine can do in your own your language.  This transcription is provided as a gist and to give time indicators to find a topic of interest. 

 

Wendy: Hello, Global Marketing podcast listeners. I am so happy. You're here to listen. T o today's episode, you know, when you're doing global business, you've got to make payments across borders and that can get really difficult sometime. And remember, we're sponsored by Rapport International, and if you want to communicate across borders, that can be very difficult too.

So you've got to make sure you have the right resources for your language and for your money. So I can talk to you about language, but I can't talk to you about the cross border payments. As much as our guest can today. Mark Ridley of GreenShootsFX has almost 30 years of working at global banks on two continents.

He's worked for BNY Mellon, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo. And he started GreenShootsFX in March of 2020. Do you remember what else started? That, that same month we'll dig into that. And he started because he wanted to deliver the right product, risk management tools, competitive pricing and education to businesses of all sizes without discrimination for making these cross border payments.

So, mark welcome. I'm so excited to hear about your journey and your recommendations, because I don't know this area.

Mark: Thank you very much. Wendy, much appreciated. And I think just that intro alone, you you've, you've captured everything that we do. So I guess we end it right here and I say, thank you very much!

Wendy: Well, you got to give your LinkedIn profile or how somebody could reach you or your web address or something.

Mark: Absolutely. Absolutely. No, I think you, you captured it well there I will say for 30 years in industry I wasn't necessarily good for my age, but I haven't had any hair for about 25 of those 30 years, but,

Wendy: yeah, you know, I'm looking at you as we record this and you have no wrinkles.

So you do look really good for your age.

Mark: I actually, I'm going to admit this. I didn't go to university, so I, I missed out on that four year worth of education. So I went straight into banking and finance at age of 18 in the UK, which was really kind of the norm.

At that time in the late eighties, early nineties or early nineties, it was 91 when I started A number of my friends went on to university. Most of them didn't and actually many of my buddies left school at 16 and went straight into financial services as well. Many of them went into trading floors like into foreign exchange and commodity trading floors, which again was, was the norm in, in London that, that those types of entities would take on 16 year olds.

They would be doing the bike and sandwich run in the morning, getting cups of tea and learning through osmosis. And then within a couple of years trading their own book of a book of clients. But of course nowadays,

Wendy: Fascinating to me! So, nowadays

Mark: it´s not the same?

Gosh, no, no, no, no, certainly. Yeah, probably in the last, I don't know, 20 years, it's it's bit like the U S right.

You, you have to have that, that regretfully. You have to have that university education. And I'll say regretfully because certainly here in the U S it's incredibly expensive. It's, it's over a four year period, whereas in the UK, it's over a three year for the same degree. And then there's obviously still no guarantee to get a job at the end of it, but I guess that's a separate topic for a separate time, but yeah, so 30 years in the industry, but, uh, straight from school at 18.

Wendy: Okay. And so you went to work in big banks and you were running the sandwiches, or how did you get into international?

Mark: Well, I, so again, my, my friends that went into the trading rooms, they were mostly doing that at international banks. And so that just had a, kind of a sexy appeal to me, the international side.

And I, I wrote to, I think I must've written sort of probably a couple of hundred foreign banks that were based in the UK international banks that were based in the UK and kept getting the standard knocked back. Like, no, we, we, you know, it's not the right time, not the right time, not the right time. We were just coming into a recession as well.

. And so I ended up working for a domestic bank NatWest, but still wanting to move into the international arena. So I gave myself a three year target and was fortunate enough after three years to then move to to Hambros bank who were more on the international side. And then it's just kind of escalated and climb through there and working through operations before, uh, moving into relationship management and sales, which I, which is where I wanted to be.

And I managed to get there in I think it was in the mid nineties, mid to late nineties, and I've been there, been there ever since, but when I, when I joined that Westbank, initially I wasn't doing the bacon sandwich and I actually joined them on their management trainee scheme. Believe it or not as an 18 year old.

Wow. Yeah, well, I was, I was one of the last intake actually. In fact, I think I was the last intake on that program. And then subsequent years going through, as I say, it was at the start of a recession and then subsequent years, the bank was looking to, if anything, to, to trim costs rather than to just continually add the 16, 17, 18 year olds, which they were doing by the hundreds every year to literally stopping and, and kind of hiring having a hiring freeze.

But yeah, then I ended up in ended up in sales and relationship management specifically in and around transaction banking, global payments, foreign exchange. And that's where.

Wendy: So, what were you, so tell me what sales and international transactions, who would you, who were you targeting? What were you

Mark: selling?

So initially the clients that I had at the bank I was at were a UK based corporations. So UK based businesses that were importing, exporting, buying and selling internationally, and then we were helping them with everything from moving money, internationally, collecting money, internationally loan facilities, trade services, facilities anything that was really I guess everything that was available by the bank as a financial transaction products, we were responsible for selling and managing those products and services with specific geographic, demographic, if you will. And then I moved from corporations actually to banks. So banks then became my client for the same types of products and services. When I moved to a different institution, I moved into what is known as a correspondent banking environment. So we were selling again, global payment capabilities, but to smaller banks that don't have that kind of infrastructure and ended up doing that for 20 something years. I think it was.

Wendy: So wait, I gotta, I gotta jump to something that, you know, is the ongoing debate in sales. And so it'd be interesting to have your take at that time period with what you were selling. The ongoing debate is when you're selling something, what percentage is product knowledge and what percentage is sales skills?

So what would you have to say in that? The salespeople always say, well, go ahead. Why don't you answer that way? You

Mark: know, that's a, that's a really good question. I prided myself on, on the product knowledge I didn't ever want to be in a meeting where a client would ask a question about the functionality and I couldn't answer it.

There were times obviously when that happens and I think it's okay to put your hand up and say, look, I don't know the answer, but I will get back to you and I'll get back to you in a reasonable period of time. That for me then like falls under the auspices of, of good relationship management as well. So if you're going to say, if you say you're going to do something, make sure you do it and do it in a timely manner.

And I think having that level of product knowledge versus somebody else who doesn't is definitely demonstrating to the person that you're selling to, that you largely give a crap that you really do understand. But, but the relationship management really that goes around that the, the effective follow-up like I say, doing exactly what you say, you're going to do a and not leaving the clients on hang and dry.

Wendy: Oh, that's interesting. So you've added a third one in there, the percent of sales, the percent of product knowledge, and then the percent of follow-through.

Mark: Yeah, I mean that, that follow through, I think that that kind of falls under the auspices of, of relationship management. So a number of the banks I've looked at some of the banks I've worked at in, certainly those in the latter part of my career, they've all been selling exactly the same products and services.

And I've typically been doing that to the same geographic region as well. And so you move from one institution to the other and there's some slight nuances, there's some bells and whistles that you previously had that you don't have. And there's some bells and whistles that you have now that you didn't previously have.

So it´s largely a commoditized business. So it really does come down to that, that level of relationship at the end of the day. Not always because there´s some other buying criteria that the bigger banks often bring in and that's reciprocity. And so that means I'm selling you something, but you're only going to buy if I also buy from you as well.

And those types of relationships of prevalent, , certainly amongst the larger organizations as well.

Wendy: Okay. So talk to me about the people that need to do this. And that would be who our listeners are, people who are getting into or into global marketing, they're selling products around the world.

What are their biggest fears about global exchange?

Mark: I'm going to be very careful how I say this, and I'm trying to think, and maybe you can help me out. Maybe your listeners and viewers can help me out here. How I can put this in a bit more of a delicate tone. So I like to say, and I hate saying it at the same time, it doesn't come down to stupidity, it comes down to ignorance. I don't like that word ignorance. So I'm going to try and think of a different perspective. Naivety. Yeah, I guess so. I think that might be a better, that might be a better descriptor. You don't know what you don't know at the end of the day. Right. And so foreign exchange might sound confusing because it's something that you've never been involved with.

Maybe, you know, some individuals that have done it in the past and it's been a bad experience or, or for whatever reason. And so therefore you shy away from it, but it's really not as complicated or as complex as people actually might think. And we try and break that down into almost like stick figure drawings, if you like, just to really help people understand what it's about.

But usually we use the almost like not putting the fear of God into individuals, but we'll certainly highlight the fact that look, if you're not using foreign exchange, there could still be a certain element of financial foreign exchange risk in your transaction. Even if you are a US importer and you're buying widgets from Germany and you're paying in US dollars, there's still an underlying FX risk in that transaction.

And when we highlight that to CFOs, you get that quizzical look, which is, well, how can I have a foreign exchange risk? My clients are in the U S I'm selling in dollars. I'm buying my widgets from Germany. I'm paying in dollars. I don't have any FX risk. And then you highlight, well, what were you paying for that pallet in dollars two years ago?

What were you paying for that pallet a year ago? And what you paying for that pallet now? And the exporter is often in, in this example, they might want a hundred thousand euros for that pallet. They certainly don't want dollars in Germany because weirdly enough, they like to transact in Euro. So he's going to be converted into, into Euro at some point.

But in order to in order to manage that manage that. Well, actually, I'll come on to, there's a, there's an issue with that. I'll come on to that actually in a second, but the exporter wants a hundred thousand euros for that pallet of widgets. And two years ago, let's just keep it simple.

The dollar year rate was 1.06 when the COVID kicked in. So you might be paying $106,000 for that pallet of widgets, then the US dollar weakened. So 1.20 something, it was 1.22. So now you're paying $122,000 today you're paying $110,000. So the exporter in Germany is always receiving a hundred thousand euros, but you're paying wherever the FX rate is in US dollars.

So you're paying in dollars, but your dollar value differs each and every time because the FX rate is moving against you, or maybe sometimes for you, but it's, the exporter is always getting 100,000 euros. So you're paying in dollars, but you have a foreign exchange risk. So we'll talk to CFOs and say, look in that scenario.

Why don´t you just ask for an invoice in Euro, in fact, ask for a dual invoice, ask for one in dollars and ask for one in Euro and pay whichever is cheaper. And I'll promise you that nine times out of 10, the Euro one will be significantly cheaper, not just because of the FX rate, but because the German exporter has to pad that invoice or pad that amount of dollars in order to account for the foreign exchange risk they have.

So instead of theoretically invoicing you or quoting you $106,000, as I mentioned just now, they'll probably quote, 110. The CFO in the USA says, well, that's fine. I can afford 110 down. Not realizing that if they'd have asked for the Euro invoice, they probably would have paid 106,000 for it. So that's known as.

And that's prevalent across most US dollar invoices that are paid by US companies.

Wendy: Okay. So, so I get

Mark: it.

Wendy: Yeah. So we're going to dig into that a little bit. So what was clear is you ask wherever you're importing to provide in the local currency and in dollars now I get it the year over year, but wouldn't it be?

I mean, if you pay a hundred Euros, you're still paying whatever the, if you pay Euros, oh..., because you can buy Euros.

Mark: Actually, you know what, I'm going , I´ll jump in there and say, yes, you're still going to have that fluctuation over the course of 12 months, , because of the foreign exchange rate, but you will be paying less US dollars because , you're getting a better foreign exchange rate through companies like us than you'll get through the, exporter adding a five to 10% margin or markup to the US dollar value

So they've got to manage their own effects, risk, right? Cause when they get paid 120,000 US dollars in 30, 60, 90 days, they don't know what the FX rates going to be. When they then convert that into Europe, they always want a hundred thousand euros. They don't want 98. They don't want 99.9. They want a hundred thousand euros.

So they'll inflate that dollar amount just in case the rate goes against them. But at time they receive $120,000. And if it goes against them, they've got that little bit of padding in there. Meaning chances are, they'll still get a hundred thousand euros without that padding, they could convert that into a value that's less than a hundred thousand euros.

But just to where I think you might be going with that, what we then say is, okay, well look, especially now, right where the rate is 1 0 9 in on Euro. Why not fix that right for the next 12 months worth of payables that you have. So it doesn't matter what happens over the course of time in the next 12, over the course of the next 12 months, you'll pay the rate that we agree today.

And I think that's also another reason why some businesses don't like getting into the foreign exchange piece because they're suggesting or thinking that. If I asked for a Euro invoice that I pay in 90 days, I don't know what the rate's going to be in 90 days, either today it's worth a hundred thousand dollars to me, but when I come to pay it in 90 days, the rate could be against me and I might pay 105,000.

Well, that's why we fixed the rate today. So you'll know that if it's worth a hundred thousand dollars to you today, you'll pay a hundred thousand dollars for that Euro invoice in 90 days time. So we that's called a forward foreign exchange. And we typically do that out to about 12 months we can do to out to about two years, but we've never necessarily advise somebody to do that unless the rates absolutely magnificent.

Okay.

Wendy: Hang on, hang on. Jumped in way far. So we got to, the biggest fears is they just don't know what they don't know. And so then the problems that we run into was my next place I was going to go when you took us right there is they're saying, well, I don't have any risk. I just do it all in dollars, but they're actually paying more dollars than if they got both invoices.

So if they go to a bank, like one of the banks that you worked at Deutsche bank or JP Morgan, Wells Fargo, you could go in and say, okay, I've got to pay this bill. They want a hundred thousand dollars, a hundred thousand euros. You could work with them to, to make sure they got it. And you get the best rate.

Mark: Yeah. So even if you, you know, even if businesses didn't want to use a company like ours, but they are,

Wendy: we're going to get into your company and what you saw over the banks, I just want to understand the traditional way.

And then we'll say why you're better.

Mark: Yeah. Well, the traditional way is definitely US importers paying in US dollars. That's not best practice, but that's typically what we see more of here in the U S if I was to line up a thousand companies, I'd be very surprised if less than 950 of them are paying those invoices in US dollars.

Internationally. If I was to do that in the UK, I would suggest probably maybe only about 300 would be paying in their currency. The other 700 would be using foreign currency to make their payments. So it's changing that mindset. Don't paying your style as paying a currency, and if you go to your bank to do that, that's fine.

But not to jump ahead. That's where we come in.

Wendy: No, no, no jump in. Okay. So they go, so they go, we're going to have plenty of time for that. So the us importers, importers, Xanax porters, no importers,

Mark: exporters are collecting.

Wendy: And so it's the same problem on both sides.

Mark: Exactly. That yeah. Export invoice their clients in us dollars or are collecting,

Wendy: but they should be doing it in local currency.

Mark: I think it makes them more more competitive. Absolutely. Okay. We can come on to that as this. Yeah.

Wendy: Okay. So paying in your own currency, you're taking all the risk on that, depending on what

Mark: it is. Yeah. If you're paying in your own currency, it looks like you don't have any FX risk, but you really do underneath because the exporter is the one that's using their local bank to figure out, well, what's the dollar value for this a hundred thousand euros that I want.

And that's still a value it's going to go up and down, up and down, up and down, depending on what the FX rate is at that point in time. So you're paying in dollars, but your amount that you're going to pay for that palliate of widgets is going to depend on the rate that the, like I say, the exporter gets from their bank.

So you, you effectively, we would say that that's still FX risk because one month you might pay 106, next month you might pay 120. You might pay 105, 115, depending on what the, the rate is that the exporter uses. So we want to take that risk out and give somebody the ability to pay a consistent U S dollar value, if you will.

So if you know that you have a hundred thousand euros worth of imports coming in each and every month, then today, we would say, okay, why not hedge that risk? Why not buy a hundred thousand euros for delivery on April 15th? May 15th, June 15th, July 15th, like do a hundred thousand each time. If you know, that's typically what you're buying and you'll get the rate that we fix today.

So it doesn't matter if the rate worsens, like during that period is completely irrelevant you´ll pay the U S dollar amount that we agree today.

Wendy: Is this the banks, or have we jumped ahead?

Mark: Well, I mean, banks can do it. A lot of them don't offer it. And that's, again, one of the reasons why we decided to create GreenShoots FX.

Okay.

Wendy: So you're jumping ahead. I still want to know the problems in the industry. So people, number one, they don't know how to do it. Number two is they want to just pay in US dollars because they think it's easier, but they're losing a lot of money. What's another problem that importers exports run into?

Mark: I had two conversations yesterday with prospects that are doing foreign exchange, but they are using a mainstream bank to do that.

And so the foreign exchange rate that the mainstream bank is, is charging them currently is for one of them, it was about one and a half percent more than they should have been paying. So to put that into context for every hundred thousand dollars that you are converting, you're paying 1500 bucks more than you should.

And we had a prospect who was looking at about $5 million a month, which is about $75,000 more than they should be paying.

Wendy: Wow. Okay. So that's what, what, they don't know, they're paying in US dollars and losing money. And then if they're working with their bank, they don't like the rates can be so high.

Mark: They can be, they can be, and we're not, we're not bank bashes because we need to use banks ourselves to, to move money globally, if you know, banks are important for a whole host of different reasons, right? But again, it comes back to, you don't know what you don't know. And you know, this particular company that we spoke to they had no clue that their bank was charging in such a high margin or such a high markup on the foreign exchange until we tap them on the shoulder.

Yeah, this is, this is what's happening. And you know what, if they go, but if they end up going back to their bank and that bank relents, if you will, and, and gives them the margin that they deserve, then that's kind of a, that's a moral victory to us. It's not one that pays the school for us, but it's a moral victory.

Like we want to drive down pricing industry. There's a financial stability board that that wants countries, central banks to focus on their global, sorry, their payment infrastructures and the global payments that their domestic banks are making wants to make them faster, cheaper, better.

And we want to be part of that solution. And while banks are keeping margins in that 2% region, which is, you know, that's astronomical, but they'll do that until they get found out. And then they'll, they'll lower the price. But you know, we're happy. We're happy for that. Normal banks are like that.

I mean, some banks, I can think of a few that, that really do come in with a, a reasonable margin. We see this more, like we see high margins on foreign exchange here than I've seen in any of the banks that I've worked with across Europe.

Wendy: Really. So the US has higher fees than anywhere you've seen?

Mark: Anywhere that I've seen. I wouldn't call it fees or call it just the markup on the foreign exchange. Like. We've had a couple of introductions to companies in Denmark and in Finland. And immediately before I even get on the phone or open up the zoom call with them, I know their margin is going to be really, really good. Can we beat it?

Yeah, we can. But is it really worth that business moving over to us just to save a couple of hundred bucks or a thousand bucks? Probably not for them. So I know, I immediately know they're going to get really, really good pricing and we'll tell them that as well yet. You know what the, the, the worst that's going to happen when we meet any prospect is we'll either confirm that the pricing is great, that they're currently getting meaning that they can go to bed happy at night.

Wendy: Yeah, you're doing you're. You're, you're jumping so far ahead here. We're still talking about problems that people are having do it. You keep coming into solution.

Mark: I do. Yeah. You know what? My wife brings me up on that one a lot. She's like, I don't want a solution. I just want you to listen.

Wendy: You saw problems when you were at the banks, you saw these problems and you came up with a solution to start your company, but I want to get into what were the problems when you were sitting in a bank before March of 2020, you know, all these years you saw a problem.

So they don't know they're paying extra, they get high rates and in the U S they're particularly high markup FX markups. What else did you see? What other problems

Mark: that was, that was effectively and enough for us to think about jumping ship and creating our own business. Lack of, excuse me, lack of education around best practices.

I don't pay in dollars , I pay in currency. And then when you're paying in a currency, you're being overcharged for it. That was really it. And I'll be careful how I say this, based on somebody organizations I've worked at, like I felt as though in some cases we were, we were really not incentivized to, to go to clients and say, Hey, I really like you.

I want to give you a fee card or I want to lower your transaction costs, excuse me, because you, as a salesperson or the teams that I was managing each year, the sales target goes up. So you've got to try and find that that increase in revenue from somewhere. So it's not that we're necessarily going to clients and then like immediately gouging them, but we weren't going to clients and saying, look, I think you deserve a a better margin on your, on your foreign exchange.

And I was a little bit, tired of that and just wanted to be able to support businesses rather than, and be part of the solution rather than be part of the problem.

Wendy: Okay. So talk about some other mistakes that companies might have made, like in going to, and we're going to get to solutions soon.

So trust me, but mistakes that you saw companies making like countries that they were entering, or, you know, I know people used to open in the UK because it was part of the part of paying in euros. But now they're opening another in the continental so they can expand through Europe that way. What are some mistakes that you saw with people in managing their money

Mark: I might just, from that perspective, I might just, and I'll keep it to mistakes. I won't go into the solution. I promise you. But certainly from an, even from an exporters' perspective where they was like selling into selling internationally and quoting to their foreign buyers, a us dollar price.

So you have a, a manufacturing company here in the U S creating a bunch of widgets, selling those widgets to Germany. I just use Germany again selling those widgets to Germany and saying it's a hundred thousand dollars for that pallet of widgets. Again, that's just, in my personal opinion, not best practice and many businesses don't realize that they're actually losing out on sales by quoting in US dollars.

Again, it doesn't happen like on every single case, but it can happen. And the reason why you're missing out on the is the German buyer might be soliciting 3, 4, 5, 1 or two beds. If they get two or three beds in Euro in their currency and they get your bed in us dollars, then they're going to push the U S dollar one to one side because they don't understand what that looks like.

They understand the Euro quote and they can understand wherever that makes sense for them to buy or not buy. If you give them the foreign exchange risk by having to then go and figure out what a hundred thousand dollars looks like in 90 days when they come to pay. They're just going to push that to one side.

Wendy: It's fascinating. So that's just like the language and that quote, you should translate the language, so they get it and you got to translate the money. So they get it.

Mark: Absolutely. Absolutely. So if you quote in US dollars and they go to their bank, their bank is going to give them a pretty crappy indicative rate.

On that day, that's just say that translates to 95,000 95,000 euros. And they're getting bids in the 90,000 Euro region. Well, they immediately are going to push you to one side because you become now far too expensive for them

Wendy: because you've got the transaction fees built into that. So even if your quote was exactly, even on the euros with the exchange rate, you've then become higher.

Mark: Well, not to provide a solution to that issue, but if you were to bed in Euro, a lower amount and use a foreign exchange house, or at least a company that could provide you excellent foreign exchange rates. You'll still get as near as dammit, the U the U S dollar value that you originally wanted, because you're going to get more dollars for that year.

I invoice because of the foreign exchange rate that you use, the better foreign exchange rate that you use.

Wendy: Uh, how does somebody shut up the better foreign exchange rate?

Mark: Yeah, unfortunately there's not really a central I guess database that you can go to like in the, in the UK, there's plenty of places you can go to.

If you want to find what's the cheapest car insurance, cheapest life insurance. There's not really a market for that in foreign exchange regretfully. So I think it's a case of look, have a chat for, to three, four institutions and you'll immediately see the variation, the difference. And you'll, you'll generally see if you don't you, if you don't have banks just bank, shall I say then?

You'll definitely see a difference between a bank and a, and a foreign exchange house.

And even between the banks, even the banks will, will sometimes differ. Like if you go to your local bank versus a, I'm trying not to name drop, but like a, a larger well-known established international bank in the states. Even the rates there could be substantially different. And then if you throw in a foreign exchange house, then you'll typically see that that price will be the lowest out of all of them.

Wendy: Okay. So that gets to be a lot of work. Just going down to your bank. Like if I go down to my, my bank, I switched, I love Middlesex savings bank. They're a community bank that when I broke my leg, they came to my house to take my business deposits. They were, they were fantastic. And so if I go for them to, for, uh, a home equity, you know, a home, a home loan, you know, I'm trusting that they're working with me because they're looking at my whole portfolio that I have my business there.

I have my house there. I have a credit card there, you know, whatever else. But with FX, you can't do that with your bank. You've really got to call around and figure out where you're going to do your FX.

Mark: That's that's a very good point. Absolutely. And I, and I think that's probably like that little bit of legwork is probably coming back to one of the questions you asked earlier on maybe about barriers and why businesses don't seek foreign exchange is because there is that I guess there is that perception because that is mostly reality that you will have to shop around, but in all honesty, picking up the phone to a bank and saying, can I have a price for dollar Euro it's as long as it takes you to dial the number and for them to answer the phone and do they have any

Wendy: minimums or size

Mark: or, yeah.

See, this is, this is again, another reason why we wanted to create GreenShoots FX is a number of businesses. And again, I've got two or three examples just in the last week alone where they're paying in US dollars, to Europe because their bank here in the U S they don't meet the minimum threshold f or revenue. So, so they have no choice, but to buy new installers. So we, again, decided to create the business, knowing that will help somebody, if they want to send a thousand pounds to the UK. Then we'll send a thousand pounds to the UK where we make any money on that. I'll probably lose money on that, to be honest with you.

But we know that overall the total basket of foreign exchange income that we produce allows us to take on those smaller, smaller entities. There are a number of banks I've worked for a few of them that won't actually take on any new business because they want a minimum revenue amount per annum.

So that kind of really pushes certain businesses out of the picture

Wendy: okay. So mistakes is quoting in us dollars and then just going to one bank and not shopping at around. What other mistakes you see?

Mark: Again the main issues that we would that we would stumble across either like in the banks that we work in and certainly in the conversations that we have with businesses right now.

Wendy: And what about the EXIM bank? I hear a lot about the EXIM bank. That's supposed to specifically work with people who export and import and there's government supports for it.

Mark: . So the EXIM bank, I know enough about them to be dangerous. They were created in the 1940s to promote mostly exports, but also imports.

But but I know mostly customers that use them do so for their exports. They're a government agency therefore backed by the government. They're not, I don't think they're a massive institution. I think as a bank, there are about four or 500 individuals, believe it or not. And they typically work with agents around the U S essentially they offer a number of different types of facility, but the way that I would really boil it down and describe it is they provide insurance against your foreign receivables.

So if you are exporting to, again, Germany, if you're exporting to Germany and you have $50 million worth of foreign receivable, you can't, first of all, you can't take that to your bank and get a loan against it, because banks are not allowed to finance foreign receivables unless it's backed by a government guarantee.

So what the EXIM bank says is you've got $50 million worth of risk out there which could be the the ship sinks. I know there's insurance for that, but mostly by default. So when that ship finally docks in Germany or wherever, and the buyer says, thanks for the $50 million worth of lumber, I'm not going to pay you the EXIM bank steps in and usually covers up to about 90, 95% of the value of that transaction.

So you can export. knowing that you're really going to get paid at least a significant amount of it in the event, by the faults. And they really specialize and focus in those high-risk jurisdictions high-risk countries. So if you're thinking about getting into a new market and you're a bit unsure about exporting to that market, because you don't know the agents on the ground, because you don't know what the political situation is in that country, the EXIM bank can give you a lot of guidance around that.

And a lot of comfort knowing that yep. You know what, let's, let's put this stuff on the back of a ship, let's send it down to Brazil, safe in the knowledge that we're going to get, we will get paid either by the buyer or by the EXIM bank. And yet you pay like cents on the dollar for that, that premium.

Wendy: I never realized that I thought they did more foreign exchange too.

I didn't realize they were

Mark: just, I don't think they do too much the way of in the way of foreign exchange, to be honest with you.

Wendy: Let's get into, solutions, your favorite? Okay. You got problems. You got a bunch of people who don't know what they're doing. They're afraid of doing foreign business or global, you know, sales because they don't know how to collect the money. They say, aha, I'll do it in dollars. And they don't realize they're using losing money.

And then they're losing money because they're paying high fees. They don't know whether to shop it around and plus they're in the United States. So they get dinged more. So you turn around and say, okay, I've got this, you know, what is it? 20, 30 years in the business. I see this huge solution. And you start a company during COVID, which that'll be the second part.

How are you going to come in and save the day?

Mark: I'm allowed to give a solution now, I love that. All right. So best practices, first of all. So if, , if a company's willing to listen, we'll talk them through why they're overpaying, how they're overpaying by paying in dollars the risks that they have, the exchange risks that they have, and then suggest the solution, which is a simple as ask for a dual invoice.

So you're being quoted you're, you're calling the vendor in Germany and saying, I want this pallet of widgets. How much is that in dollars? Ask them to provide a figure in Euro as well. Uh, more often than not. If you take that Euro figure to, even if you took it to your bank, you'll find that the amount that you're paying dollars is going to be less than the dollar amount that's quoted by the german vendor. So we'll talk about best practices, why it makes sense to ask for a dual invoice and then how to manage that risk of having a dual invoice. So now that you might have a Euro invoice, instead of maybe a, a dollar invoice, let's fix that right today for payment, when payment is actually due.

And that could be today. It could be in you know, seven days, 30, 60, 90 days, whatever it might be, but you can fix that right today. So you now have a known dollar value that you can use in your cashflow forecasting.

So that's best practices and it's, it's really, it's also the, the exchange rates. Our and companies like ours are foreign exchange rates. If I had to put a statistic on it, nine times out of 10 are going to be better than the banks by a good country mall.

Wendy: So would you call yourself a FX house? You were using that word earlier?

Mark: . Yeah. , I´d reference us as a foreign exchange house, a foreign exchange shop. A money service business. Some people might say, but I called us a foreign exchange company.

Wendy: Okay. , so client would come to you and you're going to provide them all this education that you've been fabulous of talking to us about today and advise them on how to go forward.

So that's all just client advisory services. You don't charge for that, right?

Mark: No, we ha we hope then that the client says, okay. Yeah, that's great. I will get that Euro invoice and I'll come back to you. Thanks for bringing this to my attention. We'll come back to you. I think it probably against statistically seven out of 10 times, they'll if they listen seven out of 10 times of those that listened to the advice, excuse me, take that Euro invoice back to their bank.

And again, , in some respects, we're like, you know, at least you're still going to be saving some money. Because that, that dollar invoice, we usually say, look, that dollar invoice has been padded by about four to 7%. You're probably paying between four and 7% too much by paying in us dollars. At least now you've lowered your expenses by four to 7% just by asking for the Euro invoice.

So we can go if you will, , to sleep at night knowing that okay, we've given some advice. It would have been nice for that company to come to us with the Euro invoice so that we could pay it for them. They've taken it to their bank, but at least there they're saving some money. And then three times out of ten, you know, we'll be rewarded with some loyalty, if you will.

The business will bring the Euro invoice to us and then we'll make that payment for them.

Wendy: Okay. So the companies will come to you then, so you don't even have a 50% close rate if we're checking back to

Mark: I think that, I think the reason, again, it comes back to what are some of the barriers?

If you foreign exchange or global payments or managing the payments, is probably one of 50 things that you have on your, to do list. So the easiest thing in the world is to get that invoice, and then just throw it towards your bank and say, deal with that because I've got these 49 other things I have to deal with today rather than just sort of sticking your head up above the water and just taking a breath and saying, well, okay, well, what's the time it's going to take me to opening an account with GreenShoots FX well, it's a 15 minute conversation. And we get the accounts opened up within a day to two days, max.

Wendy: And then, so if I open an account, am I making deposits in it or only when I need to exchange it? You

Mark: can. Yeah. We, uh, we have clients who do run balances but they're running the balances to support their international payment business.

Not because it's investment, um, investment balances. So they'll keep a float because they might want to make, uh, a last minute transaction. So if they have the dollars with us, then they can potentially trade and transact and send a Euro payment on the same day. For example, whereas if you don't maintain that balance, you've either got to get the funds to us today, or we pull the funds from their regular bank account, which usually means next day value, which is honestly not usually an issue.

It's very rare that you're going to find somebody who has a payment that they have to make right here right now, if they do it's because they've just completely forgotten to make it. But most businesses that are buying something have an invoice. And there, the invoice says, look, pay within seven days, pay within 30, 60, 90 days or whatever it is.

So you know, well in advance of when the payment falls due. So, but yeah, we can hold balances.

Wendy: Okay. So it sounds pretty much like PayPal, you open a PayPal and you, you can hook your bank to the backend. You can keep money in there. And if you make too many payments, it can pull it straight out of your bank.

Mark: You can do that. A couple of things that Paypal won't offer you. And again, I use PayPal. So again, I'm not here to bash them in any way, shape or form, you know, having a, having a dedicated money manager, right? So you're not having somebody pick up the phone to you and say, look, I know that you usually make payments to Germany.

And usually around this time of the month or, or a particular time of the month, the Euro rate is in your favor right now, we suggest that you think about maybe purchasing euros today, or, Hey, we know that you typically have a payment around about now. We suggest actually not making that payment because we see the rate going more in your favor over the course of the next couple of weeks.

So delay that payment. You're not going to get that level of handholding from, from the guys of PayPal. And then they'll also provide just a generic rate. Like, I'm just for shits and giggles, I looked at their foreign exchange rate to send some money to my sister, she got married in the UK a week and a half ago. So I wasn't able to get there, but I wanted to make a contribution to their honeymoon. So I thought just for shits and giggles, I'll have a look at what was, what would they get if I sent, you know, $5,000 through PayPal, what would they get in pounds versus what I could give them in pounds through GreenShoots FX.

And the difference was a few hundred bucks or a few hundred pounds, should I say, so you're not going to get that, that FX rate. We've once a business from PayPal, actually just for that, for that reason alone. But I liked them. I use them just because it's just incredibly convenient.

It's just easy to get onto PayPal, hit the button and send the money. Right. So there's that. But then also, I don't believe they're offering currency accounts. So you might want to buy euros and hold those euros today, ready for a Euro payment at some point or you might be exporting to. Germany again, and you want to click euros.

So the euros will come into your Euro account with us and they'll sit there until you're ready to convert them to US dollars or any other currency. For that matter, you might have a payable in Japanese Yen. So you click the arrow convert that's again.

Wendy:

How big does the company have to be to go from a paper?

And it's not even size of, well, you did talk about, I I'll get to the question here. I'm stumbling over my words. Cause it's about three reps in the one. So you've got, you were talking about some banks won't do it because the revenues aren't high enough, you talked about sending, you know, some personal money through PayPal.

What's your sweet spot for companies that you would work with? Like how do you measure it? Is it by revenue or is it by exchanges?

Mark: We should, you know, I suppose in some respects we should, we should think about how. How we categorize that because at the moment we really don't care about the size of the company.

And it's difficult to say what size of company. Is most, most companies is going to benefit, but it's what are you, what do you think is a worthwhile saving to make that difference? Right. So one of the companies that we, that we took over from from PayPal, it was, it was really small staff. We're probably saving them honestly about 50, 60 bucks a month, right.

Literally 50, 60 bucks a month. But what they liked is that there's a human at the end of the phone. They know who we are. And, uh, we're going to sit with them and help them figure out ways of growing their business and managing risk as they get bigger. Right. I spoke to a billion dollar company and looked at their foreign exchange flows and we could save them about $5 million.

And their response to us was that won't even move the needle internally. Like that's a chairman's lunch. So 50 bucks is a lots of one, 5 million bucks is nothing to another. So it really depends on, I think your own interpretation of what's a lot of money and how much. Eh, how much do I need to save before I'm willing to make that transition to another financial services company, not to go too far off topic, but before I left the UK, I read an article and I've been in the U S fast seven years.

Now I read an article that talked about how you're more likely to change your partner than you are your banking partners, then your banking infrastructure. And the reason is it's super easy to get a divorce. It's a pain in the ass to change bank bank providers. Now over the course of time, that's become I don't know about divorce, uh, but it's become a lot easier to move from one bank provider to another.

And we've certainly tried to make that easier from the, from the documentation that we require. It's all very simplistic, very easy to understand. Once we have that and we do our due diligence on the company. It's usually one to two days before their relationship is is actually open.

Wendy: And then, um, you know, with PayPal they've been around for a while.

Everybody recognizes them, they heard it cook up to the back. What security do you have built in to know to trust that the money is

Mark: there? Yeah, this is, this is where I think coming back to one, one of the things that we said they run about knowing your, uh, you know, your, your product knowledge. I should get a little bit more into the the weeds, I guess internally from a, from a technical standpoint, I'll have to get my technical guy to probably answer that question.

But there is, there are certain levels of encryption that prevent any kind of hack if you will, but from a. From a, where are the funds located in order to protect against any kind of bankruptcy? I won't name the institution, but all of our balances are actually held with a bank in the UK. There are global financial institution and we want them there with that particular institution, just because I understand UK regulation around financial services.

And so the financial service, uh, the financial conduct authority that regulates banks stipulates that funds need to be segregated. So basically means long story short is if we were to go bust for whatever reason or just step away, because we didn't want to play in this game anymore. Or even if our technology provider went Barstow, any part of our organization funds are secure at that organization.

Dolphin. Yeah. And again, you're over a year old, so financially you're, you'll be getting your, uh, your funds back. So there's that level of security. I am I at risk of losing my money and then there's the, I guess the technical aspects you know, we will use a two-factor authentication should people want to use that?

So there's, there's two gates that you need to go through in order to get onto the platform. And then w so I was going to make that short story long, but once you also on the platform, we also offer like two, four or six I's approach to that. So you can have somebody input a payment and release the payment, or you can have somebody input a payment, but there has to be another person or two people that, that release that transaction.

I almost, I had to, again, I had this conversation yesterday on a, on a demonstration that we were giving and I said, look, he's going to take, if you want it to, it's going to take three people to commit. Well, I should've said was, it's going to take three of you to release a payment. Cause that sounds a lot better.

Wendy: Right, right. But it's the different sides of the plate.

Mark: Yeah.

Wendy: Okay. And so you don't mention the financial institution here, but when you're working with your clients, do they know what institution it is?

Mark: Okay.

Wendy: All right. And so you mentioned that you do consider yourself a foreign exchange house. Why are you better than other foreign exchange houses?

Mark: You know, that's a, that's a great question.

Are we better? I don't know because there are 24,000 of them in the U S and I haven't had the pleasure of meeting them all. So I hate when I read. Any business that says we're the best we're number one. How do you measure that? Like how have you taken the painstakingly audio's task of benchmarking yourself against everybody CA all we better than some of the banks.

Yeah. Why and how? Because I've met probably 300 banks. I know what the pricing is. Fair. A number of organizations, are we better than some of our peers? Yeah, because we can also beat them for price. But one of the things, the, the, that we will stand by is if we agree a foreign exchange margin with our clients, then we'll stick with that margin throughout the life of the contracts.

And if anything, we're going to look to try and reduce that margin. Whereas regretfully, our industry gets a bit of a bad rap because you might start off at a low margin. And then you're not paying attention to those transactions over the course of time and the institution will widen them. Not everybody.

I'm not saying that that's everybody, I'm just saying that's what happens. And it pays, it pays to pay attention to that. Well, that's not us. We're not in, you know, we're not in. You know, but what, why are we better? Maybe? You know what, that's a really good question. Maybe we are, maybe we're not, but what we, what we stand by is what we say we're going to do.

We do. So if we're going to send you an email, we're going to send you an email. If we're going to set a price, we're going to set a price. If we're going to call you when the world's exploding, we're going to call you when the world's exploding. And, and for me, it really just comes down to relationship.

Like, do you like us? Do you like me as a human? Do you like my business partners? Yeah. Do you like the banking partners that we work with? Can we get on, can we have can we have a bit of a giggle? Can we have a bit of a laugh, but keep it professional? You know, it's, it's, it's the same as again, cause it's largely commoditized business and you know that we have it's the same.

If I go to a and we went through a whole house renovation a couple of years ago, it's like, well, why this kitchen company? Not that one, not one, not that one, not that one. They're all knocking out the same kitchens that are all manufactured in the same places. And the designs are fairly, fairly similar.

I'm going to gravitate towards the person, not necessarily this got the best price. Cause sometimes you get a little bit skeptical if it's cheap, you know, I'm looking at price, but I'm also looking at like, what's my relationship with that individual? Like, are they a sales person that they're just sucking me in?

Or they really care about my relation. And for me, it really comes down to when the shit hits the fan, not to be too crude about it. Like how quickly can you get that problem solved out? So without, and that really came back to I think where a lot of my success came from when I was moving from one bank to another selling exactly the same product to the same clients, clients would follow me around because they knew the product was going to be the same.

But it's the difference when things go wrong, how quickly you're going to get you sorted out and how much, how much of a financial loss is there going to be? So it comes down to, it comes down to trust at the end of the day. And I've said this probably a thousand times, if somebody wants to use us, that's magic.

If you don't want to use us, but you're at least adopt a best practice and at least take 15 minutes out of your year to actually check to see whether you're getting a fair price. Happy days. That's all we want for people really, quite frankly, at the end of the day, take 15 minutes. It's not, it's not a big art, you know, it's not a hardship to do that.

At least I don't think so.

Wendy: Right. Right. Okay. Well, we gotta, we gotta kind of wrap it up here and I think, you know, this question is coming is what's your favorite foreign word?

Mark: My favorite foreign word.

Wendy: I didn't warn you. This was coming. Huh. And foreign can be defined as any language cause in some lags, you know, to somebody it's a foreign word, but yeah.

We've had some, some good ones on

Mark: here. Oh gosh. Right. I, you know what, I don't know. As I, I can´t even answer that. Uh, that's a horrible question!

Wendy: I've learned all sorts of things, like the Swedish word for I'm at home, I'm drunk. I'm in my underwear and there's

Mark: going out. It's funny you say Swedish because I would say if I, I can actually genuinely say think I really do like this word and it's hyggelig it's Danish. And it just means it's, it's more of a, it's more of a physical thing than it is a, it's like, oh, everything's like cozy, nice, calm. Don't ask me how to spell it, but hyggelig.. Yeah. So if you're feeling hyggelig or you're in a hyggelig situation, that's just kind of like a feeling okay.

Wendy: I'm comfortable. See, I've heard of higgy, H Y G G E. I´d have to say, it could be very similar and I don't, yeah, I will check that out.

Mark: I like it for a couple of reasons.

Number one, it sounds nice. Yes, easily. And also it means something nice as well.

Wendy: It does. It does that. Wonderful, cozy, warm, comfortable, relaxed. I like that. Okay. That's a good one. See, you came up with a good one. How about your favorite vacation?

Mark: Any vacation is my favorite vacation.

Wendy: You told me before we started the podcast, you went on vacation and came home with a puppy was your favorite vacation?

Mark: It wasn't till we came home with the puppy, it was going really well until he, he, you know, we're mixing the ducks together. My wife and I differ, I am, I like the beach, I'm a big beach fan. We have an eight year old who loves the water, so that's great for us. My wife's very much like, she could do it, but for a short period of time, she's more of a, let's go and see 5,000 different sites and experience and live like in the culture.

So honestly, it´s a bit cheesy, but I´m going to say any vacation with my family is a great vacation. We have just such good, fun and, and great experiences and we're travelers as well. And that's something which we we want for o ur son and, and I'll encourage anybody to think about.

I started this when I was 29 or 28. There was the 30 by 30, 40 by 40 50 by 50, you have to visit 30 countries by the time you get to 30, 40, by the time you get to 40, 50, by the time you get to 50 and so on and so forth. And that will give you the impetus to get out there and see the world. And I was talking to one of my referral partners recently, she's married to, um, she's an American, she's married to a guy, comes from India and they spend a lot of time in India.

And she said, if people were to travel, there'll be a lot less racism on the planet.

Wendy: And less racism and hatred and conflict. Yeah.

Mark: And other cultures get to live in, you know, those types of environments. So my wife and I, we travel, we travel a ton. So I'll be 50 next year. And I think I'm at 40.

Yeah on my country. So we're getting there.

Wendy: Yeah. I'll have to go at up. I love that. I'll have to go out of how many countries.

Mark: I'm very harsh in my counting as well. So if you've been to China, Macau and Hong Kong, we count that as one, if you've been to the British overseas territories, like, uh, the Cayman islands, and then you've been to the UK, that's classed as one.

If you've been suffering, we were very lucky to go to French Polynesia. We went to Tahiti a few years back. That's a French, I think it's a French overseas territory. So we count that in Francis as one, if you were to take all these individual islands, I think I'm at like, I don't even know 70 something, but but yeah, we were very high.

I'm very harsh in my, in my counting of countries. So

Wendy: when I took my kids to Greece and we had a layover in Turkey, will the layover

Mark: count. Right. That's another great question. If you clear customs and you are legally in the country, we count that. Or I count that. So all you have to do

Wendy: is go out and come

Mark: back to see.

Yeah, exactly. Yeah. If you stay, if you stay airside, that doesn't happen. We were flying to Peru when we were in the UK and flying through Brazil and I thought, great, we're gonna check Brazil off as well as Peru. And we get to, and we didn't even think about this, but we get to a possible control. I had over my passport, my UK passport and he's, and at the same time, as he's just about to stamp it, my wife hands over her passport as well, which is an American passport.

And he's like, hang on a second. And he starts stumbling through my wife's passport. He's like, where's your visa? And then it just suddenly dawned on me like, shit. Yay. I don't know if you do now, but then you needed a visa. So, even though you're in transit in theory, you still needed a visa. So as a result, there was a bit of this, this hullabaloo, and we had to stay air side and they had to walk us through all the security gates and everything else.

They had to get somebody to collect our luggage and get it on the next flight. We never officially went into Brazil, so I couldn't count it as a state I stayed.

Wendy: See, my rule would be different on that. I'd say that the Cayman islands are so dramatically different than the UK I'd count them as separate, but I say you have to go out and at least stay there for a while and experience something.

Although the airport in Turkey that we were at was, was completely different and culturally, very interesting.

Mark: There's all kinds of schools of thought, like if it has its own government, if they have their own soccer, like the national soccer team, right? So like the Faroe islands, they're part of their mark and I've been to the Faroe islands and I count that as being part of them, but they have their own separate thing.

So it's like, you gotta make up

Wendy: your own rules to say

Mark: any vacation coming back to your question. How about a

Wendy: memorable cultural experience,

Mark: a memorable cultural experience?

Wendy: It's embarrassing or funny or awkward or amusing?

Mark: I´ll reference Peru. And one of the... we were bouncing around Peru I think about three or four different locations, and we were very fortunate that we were going to take a river cruise on the Amazon. It's like three, four days. And it was just a very small party of individuals. And they're taking you up all of these different tributaries and it's all very like rustic. Like, you don't feel it's very touristy. It's not, it's very like if this boat goes down, like you're done, right.

If people want to come out of the jungle and take you it's, you're done. Yeah. There's armed guards on the boat, the whole nine yards. And they took us to a school, a small village, and there was a school in the village. And you could see these, these people were like, It was embarrassing that we paid the amount that we paid to go on that tour.

And then we're being toured. Uh, it would get, we've been given this tour of a school and this, this, this neighborhood where people just had nothing like absolutely nothing. And we were warned about that. And everybody was encouraged to bring something. So we were bringing pens, pads, coloring, pencils, post-it notes for the kids and for the school everybody did that brought books.

It was really good. I've got goosey now because it was a really good experience. And then the kids wanting to put on a little play for us. So we've all been ushered into this, like, you know, into this room and everybody staves only about 15 of us and we've taken a seat. I was the last one. That's like seat and I broke the chair.

It just like cartoon style, four legs went off. So here we are like in this school that has nothing. And I'm smashing everything up. Like just like cartoon. I, I was embarrassed. I was like, I felt ashamed. I think I. I just handed over like a hundred bucks. I think it was a seller. I mean, like they said, they're taking the money and they're like, yeah, this is probably great, but it's going to cost us five days to get a chair from the nearest kind of village.

But yeah, it was, that was a cultural shock for me, I guess.

Wendy: Yeah. Yeah. That's wonderful. It's just another reminder to count your blessings of wherever we are and what we have.

Mark: Yeah, yeah, no, you know, and um, every, every day we're very grateful for that. And again, not to, not to labor the point, but my eight year old now has pulled me up a couple of times.

Cause three, four years ago, he might say to me, Hey dad, I like, can I get this game for my iPad? You know, first of all, he's got an iPad, right? So again, first world problem. But he's like, it's only 1 99. I said, dude, you got to drop the word. From that it's not, it's not only 1 99. It's 1 99, because 1 99, 2 bucks is a lot of money to a lot of people around the planet.

Right. And then as recent as probably within the last six months, my wife said, oh, should we get that item? And I've said, yeah, why don't you just grab it? Cause it's only 50 bucks. Well, from, from the other room, it's like, ah, it's not really 50 bucks. It's 50 bucks. I'm like, you're right.

Wendy: Those kids. So keep you honest,

Mark: you know, it's staggered that, but it's not lost on us, but what we have.

Yeah. We're so fortunate for any, it could all, you know, it could all disappear tomorrow, but like, you know, we're, we're very grateful for what we have.

Wendy: Yes. Okay. Where can people find you.

Mark: I was going to say something funny, like hiding myself in Peru cause I'm embarrassed. But so either coming into, uh, coming into me directly via email to mark.ridley@greenshootsfx.com.

Wendy: Shoots is green, like the color G R E E N shoots S H O O T S, correct,

Mark: FX and F and an x.com.

The website is the same. So a green shoots FX.com. You can find a lot of information on there as well about global transactions, local payments, best practices, et cetera, et cetera, some use cases and our contact information is on there as well. And then we also have our LinkedIn page, at least a couple of times a week.

We try and put out some blogs and some thought leadership content just to stir the pot, if you will, and get people thinking. And then there's a, there's my own, personal LinkedIn page as well. People can connect to me through there.

Wendy: Okay. And it's Mark Ridley, R I D as in David L E Y . So I mean, if you're doing any international sales now definitely reach out to him because as you can see, he's really willing to take the time to advise you whether you're working with him or not.

And I think that's absolutely fabulous because there's so many people that could use some advice on this. So thank you, Mark. I really appreciate you being here today.

Mark: Thank you. Now, listen, when you, I appreciate your time and I'm sorry that we went over and I'm sorry that we went around the houses and, um, Thank you again for your time.

You

Wendy: got me to laugh and got me to learn. So it was edutaining, which is what we try to do. So listeners, if you like this, and you know, somebody who's doing global business, certainly send this episode along to them. And I'm sure Mark will join our Facebook group, which is called Global Marketing and Growth.

And so if you want to connect with him and ask questions on there, that's fantastic. It's a place where you can join the community who want to share about global marketing and growth. So thanks so much, and we hope you tune in next time.

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