New Jersey Takes Small Businesses Global
03 Dec, 2015
State awarded nearly $500,000 to help the state’s small and mid-sized businesses market internationally.
By Lauren Moore
Are you a New Jersey-based business owner who has already realized the potential of a global market, or an entrepreneur seeking to increase sales and profit by taking your business worldwide?
The New Jersey Business Action Center (NJ BAC) has been awarded a $498,000 State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration to help businesses gain access to foreign markets. This award is an 81 percent increase from last year, meaning more funds are available for qualifying businesses.
Now in its third year, the NJ STEP program has helped businesses like Trenton-based LED lighting manufacturer, Tektite Industries, travel to international trade shows in France and London. Participation in these shows allowed Tektite to secure purchase orders with companies based in the United Kingdom and Kenya.
Another success story is Adsorptech, which makes oxygen production equipment. Through STEP, the Middlesex and NJ -based manufacturer received grant support to travel to Germany to participate in the Gold Key Matching Service offered by the United States Commercial Services (USCS). Ultimately, Adsorptech secured its first international exporting deal with the SOL Group, based in Italy.
“Without the top-notch support of the Business Action Center and access to the NJ STEP grant program, we would not have had access to the resources needed to accelerate our growth,” said Jim Flaherty, president and CEO, Adsorptech. “We will apply for a 2016 STEP grant so we can participate in Hannover Messe, an international trade show in Germany.”
In addition to trade show expenses, a STEP grant can also cover costs to translate websites, participate in trade missions and fees for USCS resources.
To date, STEP grants have helped nearly 70 New Jersey companies sell goods and services in the global marketplace. Companies that have received past STEP grants have reported nearly $4.5 million in export sales for a return of investment of 22.2.
Our goal is to provide New Jersey companies with the resources and the knowledge needed to succeed when entering the global marketplace. This year’s increase in funding will allow the NJ BAC to help additional companies realize export opportunities.
About NJ STEP Grants
The NJ STEP Program is available to eligible small and medium-sized businesses on a first-come, first-serve competitive basis. If you are interested in finding out if your business qualifies for an award, visit NJSTEP.NJ.GOV or email the NJ STEP Program Administrator at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Businesses interested in applying for a STEP grant or in need of export assistance are encouraged to call the NJ BAC at (866) 534-7789 or visit the state’s business portal at www.newjerseybusiness.gov.
Lauren Moore is the executive director of the New Jersey Business Action Center (NJ BAC), which supports business expansion and job creation in the state. The NJ BAC business advocates work to retain and attract businesses, providing a customer-oriented approach.
Illustration: Death to the Stock Photo