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Hiring Help in a Foreign Country

You can't go global without some local representation.

This story appears in the March 2001 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Global strategy, local presence: These are the yin and yang of business abroad. Today, global strategy is associated with the Internet and e-commerce, but local presence means exactly what it did 50 years ago: real people on-site who can manage the complexities of an international business.

Although you can establish local presence in many ways, one recommendation is to form a local alliance. Larraine Segil, author of Fast Alliances: Power Your E-Business (John Wiley and Sons), believes these alliances are not only a fast way to establish local presence, but also an economical way to add operational capacity. It's more cost-efficient for an entrepreneur who sells manufacturing parts to form an alliance with a local delivery company than to make delivery service an integral part of his or her overseas business.

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