Join Matthias Koehler, member of our International Alliance from Koehler Transatlantic Business Results, for a discussion on global expansion for German-speaking companies. In this episode, Matthias provides insight into how Koehler Transatlantic Business Results can help German-speaking firms enter the U.S. market or expand further into the U.S. market.
[00:00:00] Ashley: Hi, I’m Ashley, and you’re listening to the “Business Owner’s Guide Podcast: Tips, Trends, and Talks From a CPA.” Today, we welcome a member of our International Alliance, Matthias Koehler from Koehler Transatlantic Business Results for a discussion on global expansion for German-speaking companies. But before we begin, let’s find out more about our guest.
[00:00:23] Ashley: Matthias is the founder and CEO of Koehler Transatlantic Business Results. As a business developer and coach, Matthias accompanies German-speaking companies and people on their way to success in the U.S. Market. Before founding his own company, Matthias worked for more than 20 years in various specialists and management positions at German American companies. As part of our Alliance, Matthias and Koehler Transatlantic Business Results are a resource to assist our clients in successful global developments.
[00:00:56] Ashley: First off, thank you Matthias for joining me on the podcast today.
[00:00:59] Mattias: Thanks for having me Ashley.
[00:01:00] Ashley: Can you start off by telling us how you first got involved in accompanying transatlantic oriented companies and people entering the U.S. market?
[00:01:07] Mattias: Of course I can answer that question and I’m more than happy to give you the reasons. So as you can all hear and listeners can hear I’m actually not a U.S. native. So I was born and raised in Germany and I still have a little accent I hope that works for that podcast fine.
[00:01:23] Mattias: So, however, for the last 20 years I was always working in the German American business environment. So doing this, I was sent to the U.S. In 2012 to get over with my family and the task was, uh, very, as simple as it is. So they had a company there, a subsidiary of a German, uh, manufacturer, and it was a turnaround situation and they basically, they told me either you turn that thing around in a short period of time or we will exit the market.
[00:01:53] Mattias: So when I started there, I was clearly not sure what what’s gonna happen. In the end it turned out very well. Together with the German American team we managed to stop the bleeding, we, we could grow again and we could return to profitable results. Uh, beyond that we could even acquire a smaller U.S. company to grow beyond what we grow at that time, and also to expand, uh, our offerings.
[00:02:20] Mattias: So after that happened after four years, I returned back to Germany and I joined another company, became responsible for the international business, including also the U.S. subsidiary in Charlotte, North Carolina, and interesting enough, they had exactly the same problem. They were not growing, negative for sales and again, the question, should we exit the market or continue? So basically, did the same thing this time from Germany into the U.S. traveling into the U.S. a lot, again, we could turn that thing around, make it profitable again, grow again and, add people to the organization and now they’re, they’re pretty well, well situated.
[00:03:01] Mattias: So after doing this twice in a row, I considered, okay, that, that might be a good business model for me as well. As it seems I understand the German and the U.S. market, have some good knowledge about the cross cultural things and was able to, like I said, turn around two businesses.
[00:03:20] Mattias: So therefore I decided to yeah build up my own company and now with, Koehler Transatlantic Business Results, I’m doing exactly this. Helping other people, to grow their business in the U.S. to get into the market if they have not been yet or even to turn around their business.
[00:03:37] Ashley: What are some of the services you can provide to a German company looking to expand into the U.S. market?
[00:03:43] Mattias: So there’s basically two areas where I can support and accompany those, those companies and people first is, providing coaching, training seminars, workshops in order to train them on cross-cultural differences. So what is important and how does this influence and affect my day-to-day business in a German American business environment? Because there’s clearly a connection between knowing about the cross-cultural things and doing successful business. So this is the one part.
[00:04:16] Mattias: The second part is, is really to provide consulting to companies. When it comes to, like I said, they want to go into the market, enter the market. They want to expand their market, or they want to turn around their business in the us, and I’m helping them and, and providing them with my knowledge to develop good business strategies, good business plans, and finally execute them to become really successful in the market.
[00:04:44] Ashley: Can you expand a little bit on how our firms work together?
[00:04:48] Mattias: Yes, first of all, I know Mueller now for more than 10 years. So over a decade now, now PKF Mueller. So we worked together in the past, in my previous life with companies and therefore I know about the strengths of, of PKF Mueller in the tax auditing, and, and accounting side of the business. And I certainly can always recommend PKF Mueller being a good, uh, choice and a good address to work with if you are considering going into the U.S. On the other hand, like I said before, I’m very operational so really doing the day-to-day business, doing the business planning with companies.
[00:05:26] Mattias: So this is a service that I can provide to customers and clients of PKF Mueller, that also could, extend the offering of PKF Mueller as well. So, this is basically how we work together and, hopefully there’s, there’s more opportunities for both of us to support people that really want to get into the U.S. business from a German side.
[00:05:49] Ashley: What is the benefit of working with Koehler Transatlantic Business Results?
[00:05:53] Mattias: Yes. Um, working with Koehler Transatlantic Business Results, basically what I can offer is experience. So if you work together with me, there is a wide range of experience that I bring myself. Like I said, 20 years in the business already.
[00:06:09] Mattias: On the other hand, I have a strong network in the industry on both sides on the German side, as well as on the U.S. and I can add resources that some of the, the people or managers might not have in their day-to-day work, on their sites to really focus on the U.S. markets. So this is basically where I can help. The other thing is really being a partner for them on the way into the U.S. market.
[00:06:34] Ashley: My last question for you is do you offer long term or consulting services to companies after they have been established in the U.S.?
[00:06:42] Mattias: Absolutely. So it’s all about long-term relationships that’s also why I define my company Koehler Transatlantic Business Results, because it’s all about the results in the end.
[00:06:53] Mattias: I’ve just recently worked with a company that wanted to expand their business. I’m not able to talk about, the name of the company at that point, but their challenge was, they were already in the U.S., they were already settled there, they producing products in the U.S. The thing is that they only were focusing on one business segment.
[00:07:11] Mattias: So the, the request that came to me is can you help us out to say, okay, we want to expand beyond this market segment and sell our product into other markets. What we basically did at that point said, yeah, let’s have a look at that. Let’s have a look at your product. Where is the product fit? Does the product fit very good in certain markets or industries in the U.S.? We also said, which are the areas that we want to focus on. So we also did a clustering of, of potential target groups and then melted it down and really put behind a very thorough business plan with action plans up to the point to say, okay, now it’s all about executing, uh, contact the customers do the prospecting, do the marketing efforts and all that.
[00:07:58] Mattias: And, yeah, it started very well. They’re growing their business, they’re expanding their business and there’s way more to come.
[00:08:05] Mattias: So I’m, I’m basically exactly looking for those long-term partnerships to bring people to the U.S. market, to help them to expand, to maybe help them if they’re running into difficult or challenging situations. So it’s really about working with people, working with companies for a longer period of time and really be successful together with them.
[00:08:28] Ashley: Well, I think this was a really great overview and thank you for your time to explain how Koehler Transatlantic Business Results can help German speaking firms enter into the U.S. market. If you are a German speaking company and are interested in entering into the U.S. market Matthias and the PKF Mueller team would be happy to speak with you and answer any business or accounting, individual questions you may have.
[00:08:48] Ashley: Matthias, would you mind sharing your contact information?
[00:08:51] Mattias: Yes, of course. The easiest way is to reach me through my webpage, www.koehler-transatlantic.com or email also email@example.com.
[00:09:07] Ashley: And thank you to our listeners. Don’t forget to visit us at pkfmueller.com to learn more about our services. You can also follow us on social media for more updates, insights, and upcoming events.