Since the Wisconsin Manufacturing Extension Partnership’s ExporTech program started in 2010, approximately 400 statewide companies have graduated. Graduates have averaged $900,000 in new export revenue in nine months after completing the program, and two manufacturers have won Governor’s Export Achievement Awards.
The most recent group of six companies graduated on June 18, and now the WMEP is gearing up for its next group of manufacturers to start the program in July, according to Roxanne Baumann, director of global engagement at WMEP. This one will be hosted by the Milwaukee-based Water Council, and will consist of three sessions on July 21, Aug. 18 and Sept. 17.
ExporTech is a three-month process that leads the executive teams of usually about eight companies through the development of an export strategy. Through collaboration with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and the U.S. Commercial Service of the U.S. Department of Commerce, the WMEP helps companies answer such questions as what are the best countries to which to export, why take your products to market, and what differentiates your products.
Other topics, according to Baumann, include how to find international buyers; how to get paid; how to find a dealer, distributor or agent; how to protect your intellectual property; and what are the federal trade regulations on exporting.
The program costs $7,500 to participate. The WEDC provides $2,500 scholarships, and the Water Council will provide additional $2,500 scholarships.
Stevens Point-based Gamber-Johnson, which won the 2015 Governor’s Export award, exported .5 percent of products in 2012 when Baumann met the company’s leaders. Today, she said it is exporting almost 20 percent of products.
Baumann said it is important for companies to export because 95 percent of consumers are outside the U.S., and small-to-midsize Wisconsin companies are profiting from this global demographic.
Besides the Water Council ExporTech sessions starting in July, a different set of sessions will begin in Madison in July as well. ExporTech sessions have taken place all across the state in order to accommodate more companies.
The most recent group of graduates, who were hosted at Waukesha County Technical College, were American Prosthetic Components LLC of Green Bay; Aurizon Ultrasonics LLC of Kimberly; Herbsmith Inc. of Hartland; Letterhead Press of New Berlin; Pivot Point Inc. of Hustisford; and Spuncast Inc. of Watertown.
For more information on applying to the program, visit www.wmep.org or contact Roxanne Baumann at (262) 442-8279 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. The deadline is mid-July.