The NEPA Alliance offers various forms of export assistance to regional companies, including a local meeting with Pennsylvania's international trade advisors and financial support for overseas business trips. The latter are important in establishing fruitful partnerships outside the borders of the United States, said Mike Horvath, international business development manager at NEPA Alliance.
"If you really want to develop that relationship you have to meet the people face-to-face" and come to terms that your interests are aligned, Horvath said.
Horvath emphasized that companies of all types can participate in support programs.
"No one should think they're not able to utilize the programs. We don't care what size company you are or what product or service you have, we'll try to help," he said.
Among the resources are:
• 14th Annual "Bringing the World to Pennsylvania," Sept. 21, at the Woodlands Inn & Resort, Plains Township. This year, 19 Pennsylvania trade advisors will be on hand to meet with local businesses about developing international markets.
Last year, 31 Northeastern Pennsylvania businesses participated in 172 one-on-one meetings. Horvath said he's already received six responses from a mailing last week. The meetings and a luncheon are free, but registration is required.
• Global Access Program. The GAP award is a 1:1 match with a maximum of $5,000 to help companies exhibit or attend domestic or international trade shows, participate in a trade mission, take a crucial international business trip, obtain international certification, international marketing, website development and other purposes. Applications are being taken for projects that will take place from Oct. 1 to Sept. 30, 2013.
• Market Access Grant. MAGs help businesses cover the cost of certain international activities. MAG provides a 1:1 match up to $3,000. If Northeastern Pennsylvania businesses do not use all of the MAG funds allotted to them the funds will be returned to Harrisburg and be awarded to other Pennsylvania businesses.
For more information, visit www.nepa-alliance.org or call Mike Horvath at 570-655-5581.
"We don't care what size company you are or what product or service you have, we'll try to help."