Jean publishes a blog called the Enterprise Corner. It features articles on entrepreneurship, local industry trends, manufacturing news and periodic ‘toolbox’ articles showcasing assistance, incentives and other resources for local businesses.
Going global is becoming quite lucrative as businesses venture into foreign counties to expand market share opportunities and reach international markets. Ninety-five percent of the world's consumers now live outside the United States. The fastest growing markets are now abroad in countries like China, India and Brazil. Even though international opportunities abound, relatively few domestic companies have international customers. The reasons why businesses do not export vary, but the most common issue is a sense among businesses that there is not a market for their products outside the United States. This may be accurate for some companies, but export promotion experts suggest most companies simply lack the ability to identify foreign market opportunities and are uncertain on how to take the necessary steps to reach those potential customers.
Current export development initiatives are trying to help companies pursue international business. This effort desires to train and orient businesses to exporting which then leads to a gateway of more detailed support services for companies that want to actively pursue international business. The services below offer training, financial support, mentoring, networking, foreign introductions and consulting,
Export Finance Assistance Center of Washington offers free advice and counseling from highly trained experts on the steps to start exporting and on the meriad of resources available.
The state also supports the Export Washington initiative designed to increase the number of small businesses that export, as well as to increase the value of goods and services currently being exported by SBCs.
The State Trade and Export Promotion Program (STEP) The STEP program provides an integrated strategy of new activities to increase exports, focusing on new-to-market opportunities in China. It will target significant assistance to rural small businesses, and support small business participation in trade shows and missions, translation of marketing materials, and international certification for products.
Western United States Agriculture Trade Association - WUSATA offers assistance to small food and agricultural companies in marketing their products overseas. Qualifying companies can receive up to 50% cost reimbursement on eligible promotional expenses, discounts on international trade show packages and buying missions and valuable connections to foreign buyers and distributors.
Impact Washington offers ExporTech Export Consulting. ExporTech is an export strategy development system for finding profitable international sales.
Washington Export Resource Center (WERC) Washington State received a grant to develop a program that will stimulate exports to foreign markets. The WERC program and aims to provide timely and relevant information, resources and services to all Washington businesses that are new to export or wishing to expand their exports into new territories.
Export Readiness Centers offered through the Small Business Development Centers have specialists located in Seattle and Spokane that can assist you with one-on-one no cost and confidential export advice for your Washington based business.
With a vast array of help available, it is a fantastic time for businesses to explore exporting or to further beef up their export sales. If you are in business and want to learn about international market opportunities feel free to contact us at 509-575-1140 or find valuable resources on our website.