The US Small Business Administration (SBA) has awarded the Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) and the Colorado Department of Agriculture (CDA) a $256,059 grant to promote new trade missions targeting small businesses. Nationwide, the SBA’s awarded 44 State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) Program awards valued at $18 million to support activities that increase exporting by small businesses. Through the STEP grant, OEDIT and CDA will run eight trade missions that connect Colorado small businesses to international buyers and will also have funding available for individual international business development activities.
The key industry programs include:
* Medica in Düsseldorf, Germany from Nov 13 – 16, 2017
* Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain from Feb 26 – Mar 1, 2018
* ANTAD in Guadalajara, Mexico from March 5 – 7, 2018
* Hannover Messe in Hannover, Germany from April 23 – 27, 2018
* Bar at National Restaurant Association Show in Chicago from May 19 -22, 2018
* The Green Expo in Mexico City, Mexico (September 2018)
* Americas Food and Beverage Show in Miami (September 2018)
* Speciality and Fine Food Fair in London, United Kingdom (September 2018)
“Exposing and enabling our business community to broader markets is unbelievably important to the local economy given the billions of new dollars, job retention and creation these exports bring to Colorado. The STEP program is a key enabler for many of our small businesses to reach these markets” said Stephanie Copeland, Executive Director, OEDIT. With STEP funds, small businesses are able to learn the basics of exporting, participate in group trade missions to trade shows, travel for an individual international sales trip, and develop websites or international marketing campaigns. Last year, Colorado’s STEP award helped small business across Colorado participate in trade shows in Munich, Germany; Mexico City, Mexico; and, Sao Paulo, Brazil.
About the State Trade Expansion Program
STEP is a financial assistance program for aspiring and current Colorado exporters entering into a new global market. Funded in part by a grant with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), STEP provides grant awards to small business to offset international business development and marketing costs.