Path Home Shows 2014 Show Archive September 2014 Show 1438 ExporTech Helps Companies Grow

ExporTech Helps Companies Grow

ExporTech helps companies enter or expand in global markets.
ExporTech Helps Companies Grow

ExporTech Helps Companies Grow

For more information visit these links:

Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance - ExporTech

State Chamber of Oklahoma

Mills Machine Company Inc.

Meridian Technology Center

Show Details

Show 1438: ExporTech Helps Companies Grow
Air Date: September 21, 2014



Rob McClendon: Yet, only 1 percent of U.S. companies export, while 95 percent of the world's consumers live outside the borders of the United States, something that one group in Oklahoma is wanting to change. Joining me now is our Courtney Maye.

Courtney Maye: A program called ExporTech is helping companies enter or expand in global markets by assisting in the development of a customized international growth plan that is vetted by experts who have been there and done that.

Courtney: In the heart of America, Oklahoma hardly seems likely to become a national leader in exports. But Chuck Mills, business owner and chairman of the State Chamber of Oklahoma, says otherwise.

Chuck Mills: We’re actually kind of a little shining star in the United States. Our exports grew, where other states actually shrank.

Courtney: Thanks in part to a program called ExporTech, which connects the dots between exporting resources and local companies. Ron Duggins is with Meridian Technology Center and says exporting internationally can bring big opportunities.

Ron Duggins: The sheer number of customers that are overseas -- and you see different statistics -- but you might see 80 to 90 percent of the actual market for your product. While it may be big in the U.S., it could be that 80 percent of the actual available sales are overseas.

Courtney: And with every product leaving Oklahoma, money is flowing in.

Duggins: It is the companies that are accessing foreign markets that are stronger companies. They hire more people, and they pay on average 15 percent more than companies that don’t export. So when we have companies that are taking the products made in Oklahoma overseas, those companies generally have a higher impact for our local economic development.

Courtney: Chuck Prucha from the Oklahoma Manufacturing Alliance says exporting opportunities are endless.

Chuck Prucha: It gives you just a really good opportunity to travel. You know, every, every small entrepreneur would like the opportunity to go to a foreign country or learn something about the foreign company. And this really offers you some great opportunities to get out and see the world and be a part of the world.

Courtney: Understanding cultural differences and identifying the best foreign market for their business.

Duggins: One must understand, really, the background. You may not understand the language always, but the place that those individuals are coming from. Why are they buying your products? They may have a different motivation than our U.S.-based customers, so understanding that cultural aspect is really important.

Courtney: And while international exporting may appear a daunting task for small business owners, Mills says ExporTech makes it easy.

Mills: There are a lot of people here that will uh, that will help -- the Oklahoma Department of Commerce, the U.S. Export Assistance Center, SBA. There’s just a myriad of resources here that are free or inexpensive, and there’s no reason to be afraid. It’s really not that hard.

Courtney: And with a relatively weak dollar and rapid growth in many emerging economies export sales are the fastest growing segment of the U.S. market.

Rob: So, Courtney, how hard is it to go from a local level to maybe working on the global stage?

Courtney: Well, according to leader of the ExporTech program, he says although businesses may not recognize it, they are already competing with international companies because exports and imports are a two-way street.

Rob: Well, all right. Thank you so much, Courtney.

Courtney: You’re welcome, Rob.

Rob: Now, we do have contact information for the ExporTech program listed under the story that is streaming at When we return, an exporting success story.