Sunday, October 9, 2011

NC to get funds to support small businesses

U.S. Senator Kay R. Hagan (NC) announced on Tuesday, Sept. 27, that North Carolina will receive $603,442 to fund trade and export promotion for the state’s small businesses. Authorized through the Hagan-backed Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, the funds will help small businesses export for the first time to overseas markets and help raise the value of the exports of those small businesses that are already selling in other countries.

“North Carolina's small businesses are the key to our economic growth, and we have got to do all that we can to help them," said Hagan, who serves on the Senate Small Business Committee. "With this critical new funding, North Carolina's small businesses can expand production and hiring here at home by finding new customers overseas. I will continue fighting to ensure North Carolina's small businesses have the resources they need to be competitive in the global market."

Specifically, the funding awarded to North Carolina will allow small businesses to travel to overseas markets and attend foreign trade shows based upon best opportunities and best markets for the states’ firms. It will also help translate businesses’ websites into target market languages.

The grant is funded through the U.S. Small Business Administration’s State Trade and Export Proportion (STEP) Program. The STEP grants will help provide:

• support for small business participation in foreign trade missions and foreign market sales trips;
• subscription to services by the Department of Commerce;
• website translation fees;
• design of international marketing media;
• trade show exhibitions;
• participation in training workshops; and
• other export initiatives determined to be appropriate by the SBA.

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