Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Exporting to Portugal Is a Surreal Opportunity to Expand; EXPORTS

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Exporting to Portugal Is a Surreal Opportunity to Expand; EXPORTS

Article excerpt

Byline: GRAEME WHITFIELD graeme.whitfield@ncjmedia.co.uk

NEWCASTLE branding agency Surreal is playing a starring role in a new video aimed at encouraging British companies to do business in Portugal.

The video features British ambassador Kirsty Hayes and pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca, with Surreal hand-picked for the role by UKTI in Lisbon thanks to its success across the Iberian peninsula.

Managing director Ian Smith said: "We are seen as an international branding agency in Europe and our challenge now is to raise our profile in our native North East. We want to build on our success to make sure we are as well known here as we are in Portugal."

Surreal has seen its growth accelerate since it moved from Sunderland to new headquarters in Newcastle's Carliol Square just under a year ago.

That growth has seen their office in Porto increase turnover by 200% in two years and also the team go from an initial team of three to starting 2016 with 11 staff - with more expansion planned.

Mr Smith said: "Across the group, we are now employing 20 people and are hoping to continue to expand the UK team in a similar way."

Recent contracts in the North East have seen Surreal work on the rebranding of law firm Gordon Brown, Zero Carbon Futures, Pattinson Auction, Sonnet 43 and its new award-winning gin brand Poetic License and it will be unveiling shortly a new brand identity and website for one of Europe's leading technology transfer companies based in the region.

UKTI Portugal is based in the British Embassy in Lisbon and last year it helped UK firms achieve PS80m of business wins. The promotional video is aimed at encouraging more companies to work with them.

Ian Howard, international trade adviser for UKTI North East, said: "After working with UKTI, Surreal identified Portugal as a key export market, resulting in them opening a sister company in Portugal which has since won major local contracts. …

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