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The Journal Gazette

Friday, September 13, 2019 1:00 am

State gets $495,000 to bolster exporting

Aim to open markets for small businessess

LISA GREEN | The Journal Gazette

Indiana is the recipient of a $495,000 State Trade and Export Promotion grant, the U.S. Small Business Administration said Thursday.

The money will help support efforts to develop and expand export-related activities among small businesses and “open up new markets for Hoosier-made goods around the world,” a news release said.

Remaining competitive in a global economy requires establishing connections to international markets, Gov. Eric Holcomb said in a statement. 

The program, sometimes referred to as STEP, is administered by the SBA's Office of International Trade. Since its initial launch, the program has awarded about $157 million in grants.

Under the program, eligible small businesses can apply with the Indiana Economic Development Corp. for reimbursements of export-related activities such as participating in international trade missions, foreign trade shows or export educational programs. The Economic Development Corp. will match the federal grant with $165,000, increasing the total funding available to Indiana small businesses to $660,000.

Stacey Poynter, SBA Indiana district director, said the agency is pleased the program is being offered again. Such initiatives “open doors for small businesses to explore revenue streams they never dreamed existed abroad,” Poynter said in a statement.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, Indiana ranks in the top 15 exporting states, with businesses shipping products such as automotive parts, pharmaceuticals and agricultural commodities to global customers. 

More information, including how Indiana small businesses can apply, is expected to be made available in coming months.