Hawaii Export University program helps companies tap into new markets around the world


With Hawaii businesses looking for ways to make international connections during the 2011 APEC host year, a new program called Export University will train businesses on how to connect with buyers worldwide. The Hawaii Pacific Export Council received a $23,000 grant from the Department of Agriculture to partially fund the program trainings, which will take place across the state. The first Export University training session will take place on May 7th at the Hawaii Foreign Trade Zone in downtown Honolulu. Additional sessions are planned for Maui and the Big Island later in the year.

Export University is a program developed by the U.S. Department of Commerce to train companies in developing an international business strategy customized for their business while identifying the steps needed to find new buyers in foreign markets. The program covers key export topics such as conducting market research to target the best markets, understanding foreign regulations and customs requirements, leveraging free trade agreements, connecting with buyers, and getting paid. Local experts with rich international experience will provide insight to help small businesses that are both new to exporting and those exporters hoping to get into a new market or expand their international business.

Participants in the program will have a unique opportunity to take advantage of one of the most robust training programs available, thanks to organizational support provided by the Department of Agriculture, the Hawaii Foreign Trade Zone, the University of Hawaii, FedEx, the High Tech Development Corporation, the Small Business Administration, the Department of Commerce, and the Hawaii Pacific Export Council. “The goal of Export University is to help companies develop a customized international strategy so that they can take advantage of the plentiful opportunities in foreign markets,” says John Holman, Director of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Hawaii Export Assistance Center.

Local Hawaii businesses that are interested in registering for the program should contact James Nakano at (808) 586.2509. Information on the program will also be posted at www.hawaiiexportsupport.com . For more information on the program, please contact Lesley Harvey at (808) 457.7100.