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The Next STEP

Monday started off quite nicely, thank you, with the announcement that New Hampshire will receive nearly $300,000 for the second year of funding of the State Trade Export Promotion.

This money will be used just like the acronym says – to help small businesses here in the Granite State take a STEP toward exporting their products overseas.

The announcement, which included remarks from US Sen. Jeanne Shaheen and Jeanne A. Hulit, the Small Business Administration’s Associate Administrator for Capital Access, was made at Axenics inNashua, a small manufacturer that makes specialized assemblies, clean piping products and gas systems. Right now, the company exports less than 10 percent of its annual sales, but it has worked with the International Trade Resource Center and made use of funding in the first year of the grant to investigate and increase its export potential.

“STEP is working for us,” said Haywood Schmidt, president of Axenics, who added that the 28-year-old company intends to grow over the next two years and create 35 new jobs.

Christopher Way, interim Director of the Division of Economic Development, said the STEP program, at the conclusion of its first year, “has provided a valuable infusion of assistance to small businesses and funding for state export programs.”

In the first year of the STEP program, 24 New Hampshirecompanies received assistance from the grant and in the second year, that will continue. Matching grants will be available to qualified businesses to offset the cost of export promotion, including tradeshow fees, translation of websites and developing marketing materials.

On Thursday, representatives of six New Hampshire companies, including Axenics, Corfin Industries of Salem, EPTAM Plastics of Northfield, Orion Wire of Haverhill, Tech Resources of Milford and Wall Industries of Exeter, head to Montreal.

Gov. John Lynch is leading the Aerospace and Tourism Trade Mission on Thursday and Friday, during which the Granite Staters will take part in the Montreal Aerospace Global Supply Chain Summit .

By stepping up to this mission, the participating companies will receive a wealth of information and make valuable connections that will, ultimately, open trade opportunities.

“Those of you familiar withNew Hampshire government know one thing – we don’t like to sit on the sidelines and our businesses have no interest in standing still while the global economy swirls around us,” Way said. “ This is why STEP is important.”

 

Lorna Colquhoun

Communications Director

Division of Economic Development

 

 

 

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