AKRON, Ohio, May 19, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker presented FirstMerit Bank with the President's "E" Award for Export Service at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., on Monday, May 18, 2015. The President's "E" Award is the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.
"The President's 'E' Award winners are outstanding American businesses and organizations that have played a crucial role in strengthening and growing our economy through increased U.S. exports," said Secretary Pritzker. "By selling Made-in-America goods and services internationally, winners are creating jobs here in the United States. Congratulations to FirstMerit Bank. Exports are critical to our nation's competitiveness in the global marketplace and solidify our country's economic leadership across the globe."
FirstMerit's International Banking Division offers a comprehensive range products and services to help businesses enter and compete in global markets, including letters of credit, documentary collections, foreign exchange advisory and payments services and U.S. government guaranteed working capital loan programs. These services are delivered through experienced bankers, state-of-the-market technology and global banking partners.
"We are pleased that FirstMerit's International Banking Division has been recognized by the President for excellence in export service. We understand the importance that exporting plays in the economic vitality of our Midwest markets and are pleased to be helping companies which already export their products to global markets as well as those considering expansion into markets beyond our borders," said Paul G. Greig, chairman, president and CEO of FirstMerit.
"As a community bank doing business throughout the Midwest, we are proud of our international banking capabilities and that we are able to offer businesses global access no farther away than the nearest FirstMerit branch or banking officer," said Craig Schurr, senior vice president and manager, International Banking Division.
In 1961, President Kennedy signed an executive order reviving the World War II "E" symbol of excellence to honor and provide recognition to America's exporters. Today, Secretary Pritzker honored 45 U.S. companies with the President's "E" Award for their outstanding work to reduce barriers to foreign markets and to open the door to more trade around the world.
According the U.S. Department of Commerce, U.S. exports of goods and services hit an all-time record of $2.34 trillion in 2014, accounting for 13.4 percent of U.S. GDP, compared to 7.5 percent 30 years ago. Nationally, jobs supported by exports reached an all-time high last year with more than 11.7 million jobs, up 1.8 million since 2009.
American companies are nominated for "E" Awards through the U.S. and Foreign Commercial Service office network, located within the Department of Commerce's International Trade Administration. Record years of successive export growth and an applicant's demonstration of an innovative international marketing plan that led to the increase in exports is a significant factor in selecting the overall winners.
For more information about the "E" Awards and the benefits of exporting, visit www.export.gov.
FirstMerit Corporation (Nasdaq: FMER) is a diversified financial services company headquartered in Akron, Ohio, with assets of approximately $25.1 billion as of March 31, 2015, and 384 banking offices and 412 ATM locations in Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Illinois and Pennsylvania. FirstMerit provides a complete range of banking and other financial services to consumers and businesses through its core operations. Principal affiliates include: FirstMerit Bank, N.A. and FirstMerit Mortgage Corporation.
Media Contact: Rob Townsend
SOURCE FirstMerit Corporation