Export opportunities arise for Ga. companies
by Matt Shinall
Feb 09, 2012 | 1494 views | 0 0 comments | 6 6 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The state is working on efforts to help Georgia companies expand by entering new trade markets through exporting.

Recently, an appeal has been made to owners of small- or medium-sized businesses interested in attending international trade shows. Upcoming, however, are export information sessions to be hosted in Cartersville.

Bringing manufacturers, wholesalers and suppliers from around the world together, international trade missions offer companies a chance to meet face-to-face with prospective customers.

"Georgia has employees all over the globe that are looking for business leads for Georgia companies and so they have the abilities to set up interviews between Georgia companies and potential contacts abroad. While they're at a trade show, they might be visiting customers or potential customers in the area and perhaps suppliers as well," said Melinda Lemmon, executive director of the Cartersville-Bartow Department of Economic Development. "If a company wants to get into one of these trade markets, rather than do it on their own, they can partner basically with a free service from the Georgia Department of Economic Development, and in some cases, there might be some booths set up and there might be a shared expense that can help them."

Application deadlines for the some of the earliest spring trade missions have already passed while others are coming up quickly. Deadlines for registration expire this month for expos in Chile, Brazil, Turkey and Singapore while those in Israel and another in Brazil come due in March. These trade missions are held in April and May while a July trade mission to the United Kingdom does not require registration until May 9.

A press release from the state department of economic development provided a testimonial from a Rome businessman.

"We're a small Georgia company with limited resources, but we've been able to increase visibility for our product in key international markets in a way that we would never have been able to do otherwise," said Gary Majestic, general manager of Commercial Fluid Power. "The state's international trade office not only enabled us to participate in a tradeshow in Chile at a very discounted rate, but helped us better understand the local market and position us for greater success."

Additionally, through grants received by the state, informational workshops focusing on export assistance will come to Cartersville beginning in April.

"What our Georgia Department of Economic Development wanted to do was to host three sessions in Cartersville and two in Rome," Lemmon said. "My understanding is these sessions will have a group presentation before breaking out into group sessions for one-on-one mentoring."

Hosting the event will be professionals from the business field both currently involved in frequent exporting and former exporters. The one-on-one sessions will allow for targeted and specific information to be shared and questions to be answered. Due to the intimacy of these sessions, space may be limited. More information will be released as it becomes available about the presentations.

"It could be a pretty limited opportunity," Lemmon said. "We're anxious to hear how we can help, we're in a position to be able to suggest names or pass along names."

For more information on trade missions, visit www.trade.georgia.gov or contact Senior International Trade Specialist Taube Ponce at 404-962-4118 or by email at tponce@georgia.org.

For information on upcoming Cartersville export seminars, contact Lemmon at 770-382-1466 or by email at melinda@locationbartow.com.