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Archive for August, 2009

NH International Trade Resource Center to Support OPIC Workshop

Wednesday, August 12th, 2009

opicThe New Hampshire International Trade Resource Center (ITRC), which coordinates state efforts to enhance the New Hampshire business community’s ability to perform competitively in the global marketplace, will serve as a supporting organization for a workshop for minority- and women-owned businesses in the greater New England area conducted by the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), OPIC Acting President Dr. Lawrence Spinelli announced today.

The Expanding Horizons workshop is the latest in a series that has educated more than 750 small and medium-sized business (SME) owners around the country about investment opportunities overseas and the OPIC products that can help SMEs take advantage of them. It will be held September 24 at the Westin Hotel at Copley Place in Boston.

Elizabeth J. Weber, co-founder and director of Edge Development Group, Inc. (EDG), a business consulting firm based in Ridgefield, Connecticut, will be the keynote speaker.
In an addition to customary workshop sessions on OPIC products such as political risk insurance and financing for SMEs, the Boston event will feature a new session on OPIC support for renewable energy and clean energy technology projects, a new area of focus for the agency.

OPIC held Expanding Horizons workshops in Atlanta, Chicago and Los Angeles during 2006, and in Miami, Newark, San Francisco and Houston in 2007. Combined attendance for the workshops was 765 participants, representing 22 states. Sixty-seven organizations supported the workshops.

The ITRC, managed by the state Office of International Commerce, also houses the U.S. Export-Import Bank, the U.S. Small Business Administration, Southern New Hampshire University, USDA’s Food Export program, International Trade Data Network.  The Trade Center also partners with the United States Department of Commerce and with the New Hampshire International Trade Association. The team works on local, state, federal, national, and international levels to establish a network of programs, services, and contacts to benefit and enhance the efforts of the New Hampshire business community to perform competitively in the global marketplace.

OPIC was established as an agency of the U.S. government in 1971. It helps U.S. businesses invest overseas, fosters economic development in new and emerging markets, complements the private sector in managing risks associated with foreign direct investment, and supports U.S. foreign policy. Because OPIC charges market-based fees for its products, it operates on a self-sustaining basis at no net cost to taxpayers.

OPIC’s political risk insurance and financing help U.S. businesses of all sizes invest in more than 150 emerging markets and developing nations worldwide. Over the agency’s 38-year history, OPIC has supported $188 billion worth of investments that have helped developing countries to generate over 830,000 host-country jobs. OPIC projects have also generated $72 billion in U.S. exports and supported more than 273,000 American jobs.

Visit OPIC on the web at www.opic.gov.

Taking to the Airwaves for Business Recruitment

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

I just wanted to extend a note of thanks to our good friends over at WGIR-AM for featuring our “Get Big and Rich in the Granite State” promotion last week on the Charlie Sherman Show.

Charlie was off, but News Director Angela Anderson did a great job interviewing Public Service of New Hampshire Economic & Community Development Manager Pat McDermott (pictured here) and myself.

greenerpalooza-ii-010For those of you needing the “Big & Rich” refresher course, a few weeks back, over 900 Massachusetts business owners received an individualized invitation to take part in the “Get Big and Rich in New Hampshire” promotion which will see one lucky winner receive a limousine ride (courtesy of Capital City Limousine) from their home to the Meadowbrook U.S. Cellular Pavilion in Gilford, New Hampshire where they will receive VIP passes to see Grammy Award nominees Big & Rich (“Save a Horse,” “8th of November,” “Coming to Your City,” “Lost in This Moment” and “Wild West Show”), backstage passes and access to a pre-concert reception at Meadowbrook’s Center Stage Buffet with New Hampshire Division of Economic Development business recruiters. Ten other winners will receive tickets to the show and access to the reception.

Sponsored by Public Service of New Hampshire in coordination with the Division of Economic Development, this promotion is a unique twist on business recruitment which has already garnered front page business section coverage in the Boston Herald in addition to generating over five pages worth of comments.

To hear the interview, please visit http://nheconomy.com/wgir.wma.

Maximizing Your Web Presence Focus of Free Workshop

Tuesday, August 11th, 2009

With 90 percent of online traffic being generated via search engines, it’s imperative for companies to ensure that their business’ names fight their way to the top of the Web pile. With that in mind, the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development will be joining together with Windhill Design to hold a “Maximizing Your Web Presence” workshop at the Division of Economic Development (172 Pembroke Rd.) on Thursday, September 17th from 9 a.m.-noon. 

“Having an effective Web site that is easily found and well positioned is an absolute necessity for business growth,” said New Hampshire Division of Economic Development Communications & Legislative Director Steve Boucher. “There are literally millions of options for customers searching for services in cyberspace so now more than ever, it’s important to stand out from the crowd.”

As part of the interactive workshop, participants will develop valuable skills in keyword research, discover how their site stands now in comparison to their online competition and gain an introduction to Pay-Per-Click, local search and social media.

link-head-shot“This will be an excellent overview of how online promotion and marketing can influence a company’s bottom line. Having an effective Web presence drives sales and profit,” said guest presenter Link Moser, owner of Gilford, NH-based Windhill Design. Moser, who founded Windhill in 1996, has been a guest speaker at several events including workshops and classes for the MicroCredit NH, Hannah Grimes Marketplace, Amoskeag Business Incubator, NH Technical Institute and the NH Farm & Forest Expo. His own company Web site, www.windhill.com, consistently ranks at the top of Google for such phrases like “NH web design,” “NH web designer,” and “NH website design.”

Admission to this workshop is free but is limited to the first 40 registrants. To register, please email your name, company name, address, telephone number and Web site (if any) to Leslie Sherman at the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development at lsherman@dred.state.nh.us.

Nemo Equipment, Inc. Named August “Innovation Rocks!” Award Winner

Monday, August 10th, 2009

By crafting a 4.5 pound “green” tent that can withstand 40 mile per hour winds, Nemo Equipment, Inc. has earned the New Hampshire Business Resource Center’s “Innovation Rocks!” Award for the month of August.

nemo-nano-ozNashua-based Nemo Equipment’s Nano OZ is a durable two-person backpacking tent made almost entirely of recycled materials. Recycled, post-consumer plastic is used for the fabrics, guylines, even the zipper tape. Comprised of 90% recycled and recyclable materials, more than any other tent currently on the market, the Nano OZ was hailed by Backpacker Magazine for designing a “rock-solid structure” that withstood blasting 40-mph winds in Wales’s Snowdonia National Park.

“Nemo has not only created a tremendous product, it has also put great emphasis on being environmentally friendly,” said New Hampshire Division of Economic Development Interim Director Roy Duddy. “This type of innovation is setting the pace in the outdoor equipment industry and is testament to the type of creative thinking that New Hampshire is known for.”

For more information about Nemo Equipment Inc., visit www.nemoequipment.com

“Innovation Rocks!” is an initiative sponsored by the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development’s Business Resource Center in coordination with Rock 101 (WGIR-FM) and the The Pavilion at the Hilton Garden Inn Manchester Downtown to celebrate the creativity and ingenuity of New Hampshire innovators.

New Hampshire Makes the Top 10

Friday, August 7th, 2009

thumbs_upCongratulations to the Granite State once again! The 2009 Business Facilities Ranking Report has just been announced and New Hampshire ranked number ten in the “Top States for Business Climate.”

According to the report, “Our Business Climate ranking is perhaps our most coveted designation, because the states that emerge on top of this listing already have dominated several other Business Facilities rankings. In the midst of the worst economic slump since the Great Depression, lucrative projects are few and far between. A well-earned business friendly reputation tied to an aggressive growth strategy is an absolute necessity not just to attract new business but also to maintain existing industrial sectors.”

There are 20 input factors that helped determine the rankings including Cost of Labor, Business Tax Climate, Quality of Life, Educated Workforce, Transportation Infrastructure and Greenest State.

“This is tremendous news for New Hampshire,” said New Hampshire Division of Economic Development Interim Director Roy Duddy. “The Granite State continues to set the pace for entrepreneurship, business friendliness and cutting edge business development.”

– Steve Boucher, Communications & Legislative Director

Community Radio – Message With Flavor

Monday, August 3rd, 2009

Vanilla, homogenized, non-descript….those are just a few of the terms that come to mind when looking at the radio landscape over the past ten years with the rise of syndicated programming and the dearth of locally-based content.

As a radio account executive friend of mine said recently, “I hope that you love Ryan Seacrest because pretty soon, that’s all you’re going to hear.” Now, I have nothing against Ryan Seacrest, Michael Savage, Rush Limbaugh and the other syndicated hosts who dominate the airwaves in 2009, but there needs to be more local flavor in the daily radio listening diet.

wkxlThat’s where WKXL comes in. Billed as “Your Hometown Radio,” this Concord-based station features all locally based programming on subjects as wide ranging as business, arts and culture, sports and health. It’s information from your neighbors and about your neighbors. It’s also an incredible showcase for some very talented people in our community.

I had the good fortune last month to be a featured guest on Chris Thompson’s “The Business Advantage” program. In his “non radio life,” Chris is the founder of Catch 22 Solutions (www.catch22solutions.com), a sales performance consulting company. Catch 22 Solutions helps companies and sales professionals accelerate sales performance by enhancing and improving their current selling process.

chris-thompsonPrior to founding Catch 22 Solutions, Christopher was a Director of Sales at PC Connection, Inc., a Fortune 1,000 company that sells technology products and services to consumers, businesses and government agencies. Christopher was responsible for the sales performance and professional development of corporate sales executives in their first twelve months with the company.

Given that pedigree, Chris is the perfect host for a program that centers on the business related issues of the day. And let me tell you, he comes to the table completely prepared….I was never more impressed with the level of questioning and the depth of thought that went into an interview than I was on this occasion. Chris knew his subject deeply and crafted his questions in such a way that they provoked thought and stimulated conversation. In short, it was the quickest hour I’ve ever spent on the air. To listen to the archived version, visit Show #18 on the following web page: http://www.wkxl1450.com/site/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=4292&Itemid=113.

Thanks to Chris and the rest of the WKXL team for proving that community radio is alive, vibrant and still resonating with audiences who are tired of the same old tired formula. In an industry that has increasingly gone bland, they’re interjecting a sorely missed flavor and providing a tremendous community service.

– Steve Boucher, Communications & Legislative Director

WMUR Project Economy Workshops Announced

Monday, August 3rd, 2009

Haven’t polished up that resume in years? Interested in learning networking tips that can help you land a great new job? If so, you’ll want to take part in one of the many interactive workshops planned for the WMUR Project Economy Job Fair & Career Expo scheduled for August 27th from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the New Hampshire Motor Speedway in Loudon.

job-fair-i-snhu-012Presented by WMUR, in coordination with the State of New Hampshire and New Hampshire Motor Speedway, the Project Economy event will feature over 143 businesses offering over 1,400 jobs. In addition, attendees will have the opportunity to attend the following workshops:

A. Job Search, Applications, Resumes and Cover Letters – Marlene Rodrique and Mike Bergeron (NH Employment Security)

B. Effective Communications Skills in the Job Search – Ted Gorski (Get Your Edge, LLC)

C. Interviewing: A Skill That Can Be Learned – Leonard S. Rishkofski (Snowden Associates)

D. Overcoming Obstacles in a Tight Job Market – Susan B. Posluszny (Options for Career & Life Planning, LLC)

E. Career Transitions – Bill Ryan (Ryan Career Services, LLC)

F. The Art and Science of Job Hunting – Gene Durkee (New England College)

G. Networking: It’s Not Who You Know, But Who Knows You – Gregg Fall (Snowden Associates)

H.  Challenging Your Potential – Eileen Sarson (Tandem Training & Consulting, LLC)

Admission to the Project Economy event is absolutely free. There is ample parking at New Hampshire Motor Speedway and a tram service from the lots will be available. For more information, contact 271-2591.