International Trade Shows, are they worth it?

By Michael R. Czinkota and Ilkka Ronkainen

More than 24,500 trade shows yield an annual $100 billion in revenue worldwide which means that even in this hyper-digital age, marketers and customers still find these events worthwhile.

Executives surveyed on trade shows ‘ usefulness have said that exhibitions provide unique value not found in other marketing channels. Firms appreciate the personal interaction with their stakeholders. Clients can, in turn, evaluate product matches.

The U.S. Department of Commerce’s International Buyer Program (IBP), a joint government-industry effort, recruited nearly 13,500 prospective buyers from international markets to come to U.S. trade events in order to meet U.S. exporters. For example, Pack Expo shows consistently welcome visitors from more than 120 nations and provide them with access to the latest technologies, as well as networking opportunities and education programs. As a result, the IBP is said to generate more than $900 million in exports. More than 49% of this growth came from U.S. firms that exported to a new market.

Further, the costs of closing a sale through trade shows are estimated to be much lower than closing a sale through personal representation. Th e average cost of making the first face-to-face contact with a potential customer through an exhibition lead is $96, compared with $1,039 without.

Read the full article here: trade shows April 2015

Michael R. Czinkota researches international business and policy issues at Georgetown University. He served in trade policy positions in the Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations.

Ilkka A. Ronkainen is a member of the faculty of marketing and international business at Georgetown University. Their joint book is International Marketing, 10th Edition.


Secretary Penny Pritzker to Lead U.S. Business Delegation to Poland and Turkey

The PEC members comprising the delegation of the first PEC fact-finding mission of the Administration are:

  • Vice Chair Ursula Burns, Chairman and CEO, Xerox Corporation
  • Mary Andringa, President and Chief Executive Officer, Vermeer Corporation
  • Dick Friedman, President and Chief Executive Officer, Carpenter & Company
  • Marillyn Hewson, Chairman, President, and Chief Executive Officer, Lockheed Martin Corporation
  • Arne Sorenson, President and Chief Executive Officer, Marriott International
  • Patricia A. Woertz, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Archer Daniels Midland Company
  • David Abney, Chief Executive Officer, United Parcel Service
  • Robert Wolf, Chief Executive Officer, 32 Advisors

Also participating in the mission are senior executives from the following companies, whose CEOs are also PEC members:

  • IBM
  • Boeing
  • eBay Inc.
  • AES Corporation (Turkey)
  • Pfizer Inc.
  • Magno International
  • Dow Chemical (Turkey)
  • United Association

Serving as the principal national advisory committee on international trade, the PEC was established in 1973 and advises the President on government policies and programs that affect U.S. trade performance; promotes export expansion; and provides a forum for discussing and resolving trade-related problems among the business, industrial, agricultural, labor, and government sectors.

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Statement From U.S. Secretary of Commerce on International Trade in Goods and Services in June 2014

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker issued the following statement today on the release of the June 2014 U.S. International Trade in Goods and Services data. U.S. exports of goods and services increased to a record $195.9 billion from $195.6 billion in May, with record levels in automotive and consumer goods, travel, as well as telecommunications, computer and information services.

“Today’s data show that our efforts to expand exporting opportunities for U.S. companies are paying off,” said Secretary Pritzker. “It is critical that we continue building on our efforts to help American companies sell their goods and services overseas so they can expand and create jobs here at home. President Obama and the Department of Commerce are keenly focused on paving the way for U.S. firms to do more business in high-potential and high-growth markets, where there is great demand for what our companies have to offer.”

Last week, Secretary Pritzker joined U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry in New Delhi for the U.S.-India Strategic Dialogue, where she led discussions aimed at strengthening economic ties between the two countries through increased trade and collaboration in key sectors. Yesterday, the Department of Commerce co-hosted the U.S.-Africa Business Forum with Bloomberg Philanthropies, an unprecedented event that brought together government officials and business leaders from the U.S. and Africa to discuss increasing trade and business engagement on the Continent. As part of the Forum, a number of American businesses, aided by U.S. trade assistance efforts, announced deals in Africa worth more than $14 billion. The Business Forum was a part of the first-ever U.S. Africa Leaders Summit.

As part of efforts to further strengthen trade and financial ties with Africa, President Obama yesterday signed an Executive Order directing the Secretary of Commerce to establish a President’s Advisory Council on Doing Business in Africa, to be made up of private sector representatives from companies of all sizes and sectors. The council will work to promote broad-based economic growth in the United States and Africa by encouraging U.S. companies to trade with and invest in the Continent. The Doing Business in Africa (DBIA) campaign, which was launched in 2012 as part of the U.S. Strategy Toward Sub-Saharan Africa, strives to increase U.S. trade promotion to Africa and supports NEI/NEXT.

In May, Secretary Pritzker announced NEI/NEXT, the next phase of the President’s National Export Initiative (NEI) that aims to help American businesses of all sizes capitalize on opportunities to sell America goods and services abroad. NEI/NEXT will help more American companies reach more overseas markets with objectives focused on improving data, providing information on specific export opportunities, working more closely with financing organizations and service providers, and partnering with states and communities to empower local export efforts. Since the launch of the NEI in 2009, a record number of U.S. companies now export annually, and the United States has seen an overall increase of nearly $700 billion in exports of goods and services. U.S. exports of goods and services reached an all-time high of $2.3 trillion last year, and 11.3 million U.S. jobs are now supported by exports, up 1.6 million since 2009.

Export Fact Sheet

U.S. keen to invest in 3 key areas

“We know that India’s new government is committed to an agenda of accelerating growth, attracting investment, generating good-paying jobs, and ushering in a new era of global co-operation and economic dynamism. The United States has a vested interest in seeing India succeed, in seeing this nation reach its full economic potential and we want to be an essential partner in meeting your goals,” Ms. Pritzker told Indian industrialists.

With India likely to spend $1.7 trillion by 2020 to develop infrastructure, the U.S. is seeing greater opportunity to participate.

As far as manufacturing is concerned, Ms. Pritzker said the U.S. Department of Commerce could offer a model for progress in this field.

“We are ready to share our best practices with all of you,” she said.

She said U.S. would like to create a business climate in India that was more open for global investment.

Bilateral trade between the two countries now stands at more than $96 billion.

African Energy: U.S. Dept of Commerce Delegation will travel to Ghana and Nigeria

The goal of the mission is to expand opportunities for U.S. companies in the energy sector while addressing a major need to develop increased energy and power generation. As a trade-mission representative, ECC will focus on energy resources and systems, and opportunities to build out power generation, transmission, and distribution.

Presently, seven of the ten fastest-growing economies in the world are in Africa. Yet, more than 600 million people lack access to reliable electricity, including over 85 percent of those living in rural areas. Through high-level meetings with a wide range of government, commercial, economic, industry, and trade representatives, this mission will explore these rapidly growing markets, and facilitate the expansion of U.S. exports in countries like Ghana and Nigeria.

The delegation will travel to Ghana and Nigeria from May 18-23, 2014.