Specialized Consulting Services
The SBDCs International Business Program can help you enter and compete in markets around the world. Whether you are looking into global trade for the first time or are simply looking to break into a new overseas market our federally recognized consulting service can guide you through the complex world of international trade.
Exporting might open wonderful new markets for your business. The Shippensburg SBDC connects you to an array of state and federal resources that can help you determine which course is right for your business. We can help you figure out what markets are best for your company, how to target those markets, and what resources are available to help cut through the red tape associated with global trade.
Why Your Company Should Consider International Business
- International trade boosts profits
- Foreign markets represent a major growth area for U.S. companies
- Foreign markets are becoming more accessible as trade barriers are breaking down
- Exporting minimizes risk through market diversification. Long-term business success may depend on participation in the global economy
- Diversification abroad can offset loss of sales at home
- Good markets abroad may still exist for products that have reached the end of their domestic lifecycle
- Entering new markets, particularly international markets, challenges a company to stay current with technological developments
- Importing opportunities can help reduce the cost of goods
- Importing opportunities can offer your business new market opportunities
How the SBDC Can Help Your Company Expand Global Market Opportunities
An international trade specialist will work with you on a confidential, one-on-one basis to help you plan and implement your export strategy. Services include:
- Assessing your company's international trade readiness
- Evaluating your products or services for export potential
- Identifying the best foreign market opportunities
- Developing strategic and marketing plans
- Identifying foreign sales agents and distributors
- Planning market entry strategies
- Explaining international trade procedures and regulations
- Providing information on technical standards and export/import documentation
- Determining sources of trade financing and risk management
- Identifying trade mission and trade show opportunities
- Determining import restrictions, duties, and tariffs
The SBDCs utilize a variety of resources, including database networks, electronic bulletin boards and the Internet, to identify worldwide trade leads for your products or services. These sales leads are evaluated and forwarded to your company at no charge.
As an extension of its consulting services, the SBDCs provide information on international trade opportunities, issues, and exporting/importing mechanics through introductory, intermediate and advanced level workshops. Examples of such programs include:
- Export Planning, Financing and Documentation
- Developing an International Marketing Plan for Food/Agricultural Products
- International Insurance for Business
- Mastering the European Union
- Doing Business in China
- Cross Cultural Communications
- Licensing Technical Data and Software for Export
SBDC international trade specialists work closely with Pennsylvania and federal agencies and programs to promote your products in foreign markets. As a member of the Team Pennsylvania Export Network, the SBDCs have access to the state's overseas offices. Among the many services provided by the Commonwealth's overseas offices is a review of your preliminary market assessment by in-country experts who review your strategy and provide comments to help you fine-tune your approach.
More and more Pennsylvania small firms are entering and competing successfully in the global marketplace thanks to assistance from the Small Business Development Centers. In 2004, export sales of SBDC clients topped $66 million.
Government Marketing Assistance Program
The mission of the Pennsylvania SBDCs is to help you grow your business. For some firms, a route to expanding sales is through government contracting. The SBDCs can help you identify contract leads and sell to federal, state and local governments and prime contractors through the Government Marketing Assistance Program.
If your firm is looking to expand its sales base by participating in the government marketplace, the Bid Match system will help you identify federal, state and local government opportunities. You will save significant time and money by using Bid Match.
Bid Match provides targeted contract leads, matching your individual products or services with government sales leads. An SBDC consultant will work with you to develop a profile of your firms products and services to enter into the Bid Match system.The Bid Match system will extract only those leads that match your products or services. Leads come from extensive database networks, including:
- The Commerce Business Daily (CBD)
- DoD Blue Tops File
- DLA Small Purchases
- Prime Contract Awards
- Pennsylvania Bidnet
- Nationwide state and local government bid boards
- Foreign trade leads
- Private contracting opportunities
Searches are conducted daily and leads or a dedicated website are sent directly to your company via e-mail. Many leads are provided with complete procurement histories referencing competitors, pricing and national stock numbers. This information is useful in determining bid feasibility and identifying competitors. Bid Match services are provided at no charge.
Bid Match Is Easy to Use
To start receiving leads from the Bid Match system, simply complete the online Company Profile form below. An SBDC procurement specialist will contact you to develop your company profile that will be entered into the Bid Match system. You will then begin receiving leads by e-mail.
BID MATCH IS AVAILABLE FOR PENNSYLVANIA FIRMS ONLY.
The Environmental Management Assistance program
The Pennsylvania SBDCs' Environmental Management Assistance Program (EMAP) is a free and confidential statewide service. By contacting your local SBDC you can take advantage of this service. Environmental Specialists are located throughout Pennsylvania and will be able to assist you in the following areas:
- Confidential on-site environmental management, regulatory compliance and pollution prevention
- Confidential assistance for understanding environmental permit and compliance requirements
- Confidential assistance for incorporating environmental considerations within strategic business management and planning activities
- Environmental training seminars
- Liaison to regulatory enforcement agencies
- Links to additional sources of technical and financial assistance
Who Can Benefit
Businesses in any industry, including the manufacturing, retail and service sectors, can benefit from improved efficiency through strategic environmental management. Pollution prevention and energy efficiency approaches may vary by sector, but the opportunities always exist. So whether your business is still just an idea, or whether it is an existing operation, the Pennsylvania SBDCs can help.
The Bottom Line
Pollution is a drain to a firm's bottom line. Whether it's air emissions, solid or hazardous wastes, or wastewater discharges, pollution is a waste resulting from inefficiencies in a firm's operations. And what business is ever purposely wasteful? By preventing pollution before it is ever created in the first place, businesses can improve their efficiency and save money. Learn how to use pollution prevention to:
- Reduce raw material purchase costs
- Reduce compliance burdens and costs associated with environmental permits, record keeping and reporting requirements
- Reduce waste management, treatment and disposal costs
- Reduce long-term liabilities associated with hazardous waste management
The Pennsylvania Small Business Development Centers can help you learn how to manage your environmental compliance responsibilities in the most cost-effective way, with a focus on pollution prevention.
Technology Commercialization Assistance Program
The Technology Commercialization Assistance Program assists high growth and technology firms with sophisticated business management issues including alternative financing, human resources, patents and trade marking, intellectual property, and product commercialization. Cooperating with their host institutions, the Technology Commercialization Assistance Program also helps struggling US Department of Defense contractors locate markets outside of the Department of Defense.