NEW HAVEN, Conn., Sept. 19, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Today, Connecticut small business owners learned how to gain a competitive edge in the global marketplace when selling their goods and services abroad. The primary reason these companies, and others like them around the nation, hesitate to explore foreign markets is fear of not getting paid by customers. Fred P. Hochberg, the chairman and president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States (Ex-Im Bank) and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) explained how federal government export financing programs and products address this fundamental concern and also offer access to capital.
More than 80 representatives from local companies attended the event, which focused on how they can increase their bottom line and create jobs by exporting their goods and services to more customers in more countries. This is the twenty-second forum of its kind around the country organized by Ex-Im Bank as part of its Global Access for Small Business initiative launched in January, 2011.
"Only one percent of U.S. small businesses export and yet ninety-five percent of the world's customers are outside our borders," explained Chairman Hochberg. "We're hosting this forum today because we want to see the words Made in Connecticut around the globe," said Hochberg. "Exports create and save American jobs, and it is vital that we encourage small business owners to expand to the international marketplace."
"I am very pleased to welcome the Export-Import Bank to Connecticut today to put on this critical forum. Creating jobs and growing the economy is my top priority, and Ex-Im's Global Access program gives American small businesses the tools they need to compete and thrive in the global economy. And especially in today's economy, exports are what we need right now. They create jobs, promote prosperity, and are integral to fostering a meaningful economic recovery— for example, 22 percent of all manufacturing workers in Connecticut depend on exports for their jobs," said Congresswoman DeLauro. "Today's forum provided our local businesses with the information and support they need to do what they do best: to export goods, create jobs, and help all of Connecticut fully recover from this historic recession."
Representatives from Connecticut companies that currently export, R.C. Bigelow, Inc. and Unicast Development Company, provided first-hand accounts of how their companies have benefited from the resources of government programs.
Business owners also received one-on-one trade counseling from representatives of the Export-Import Bank, U.S. Commerce Department and Small Business Administration. In addition, current small business exporters from the New Haven region provided testimonials about their experience in getting started.
Small business owners who missed this Global Access forum can still learn how Ex-Im Bank can expand their export sales by contacting Ex-Im Bank's Regional Export Finance Center at 212-809-2650 or by calling toll-free to 1-800-565-EXIM (3946). Ex-Im Bank offers information specifically designed to assist small business exporters secure export financing on its website at www.exim.gov/smallbusiness/.
Global Access is supported by a wide variety of business and financial and government partners, including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), and the Bank's 60-plus city/state partners located throughout the U.S. This year, Export-Import Bank plans to hold more than 20 Global Access forums around the country.
About Ex-Im Bank:
Ex-Im Bank is an independent federal agency that helps create and maintain U.S. jobs by filling gaps in private export financing at no cost to American taxpayers. The Bank provides a variety of financing mechanisms, including working capital guarantees, export-credit insurance and financing to help foreign buyers purchase U.S. goods and services.
In FY 2011 through August 4, 2011, Ex-Im Bank has approved more than $24.5 billion in total authorizations – an all-time Ex-Im record. This total included 2,548 U.S. small business transactions. Ex-Im Bank's authorizations through August 4 will support $31.5 billion in U.S. export sales and approximately 213,000 American jobs in communities across the country. For more information, visit the Bank's Web site at www.exim.gov.