Today EXIM announced that 13 small businesses representing a cross section of American innovation and industry sectors from a dozen states were recipients of its Exporter of the Year award. The awards were presented during EXIM’s 2020 Annual Conference, the largest event in the agency’s history with more than 1,500 registrants, which was held virtually September 9-11.
“I am honored to recognize these small businesses on behalf of EXIM for their outstanding contributions to fulfilling our agency's mission of supporting American jobs by facilitating U.S. exports,” said EXIM President and Chairman Kimberly A. Reed. “They come from every region of our country and many different industries, but all represent American ingenuity and success. Approximately 90 percent of EXIM’s authorizations directly support small businesses like the exporters being awarded today, and at EXIM we are proud to help in the success of these small businesses as they compete in the global marketplace and support American jobs.”
The winners of the Exporter of the Year awards are:
- AcousticSheep LLC, a minority- and woman-owned small business in Erie, Pennsylvania, that manufactures headphones designed for sleeping and running. It has used EXIM’s export credit insurance since 2017 to expand existing sales and enter new markets, with exporting now accounting for 25 percent of sales.
- Allen Engineering Corporation, a family-owned small business in Paragould, Arkansas, that manufactures concrete equipment. It has used EXIM’s export credit insurance since 2006, and EXIM has supported exports valued at more than $14.6 million in the past six years.
- American Botanicals, a small business in Eolia, Missouri, that supplies wholesale organic spices, herbs, and botanicals. It has used EXIM’s export credit insurance to support its international sales since 2010, allowing the company to expand into nearly a dozen new countries.
- Consolidated Metal Products Inc., a family-owned small business in Cincinnati, Ohio, that manufactures suspension parts for trucks and trailers. It has used EXIM’s working capital loan guarantee since 2006, supporting assembly plants in 16 countries.
- DataLocker, a small business based in Overland Park, Kansas, that manufactures encrypted data storage solutions. EXIM has supported exports valued at more than $2.3 million to more than 20 countries since the company began using export credit insurance in 2016.
- Fireaway Inc., a small business in Minnetonka, Minnesota, that manufactures fire suppression products. With a network of distributors on six continents, it has been using EXIM’s export credit insurance since 2018, and exports account for more than 82 percent of revenue.
- Greenfield World Trade, a small business in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, that provides foodservice equipment and supplies. It has used EXIM’s working capital loan guarantee to expand its borrowing base, and EXIM has supported exports valued at approximately $150 million in the past six years.
- H2O LLC, a small business in Lafayette, Louisiana, that provides water treatment solutions for offshore oil and gas markets and marine industries. It has used EXIM’s export credit insurance for environmentally beneficial exports since 2017, and international sales are on track to exceed 50 percent of total sales in 2020.
- Interstate Narrow Fabrics Inc., a family-owned small business in Haw River, North Carolina, that manufactures narrow fabrics such as elastics, ribbons, and straps. It began using EXIM’s export credit insurance during the recession of 2009 to maintain existing accounts and expand international sales, and in the past six years, EXIM has supported exports to markets including Mexico, Canada, Dominican Republic, and Sri Lanka.
- Robbins Sports Surfaces, a veteran-owned business in Cincinnati, Ohio, that manufactures sports flooring systems. It has used EXIM’s export credit insurance for its international sales strategy since 2003, with exports sustaining the jobs of the entire workforce of 180 employees.
- RPS Corporation, a small business in Racine, Wisconsin, that manufactures commercial floor cleaning equipment. It has used export credit insurance since 2008 to extend favorable credit terms to its network of distributors in 36 countries, with EXIM supporting exports valued at more than $62 million since 2014.
- The Software Revolution Inc., a small business in Kirkland, Washington, that provides automated legacy software system modernization services. It began using EXIM’s export credit insurance in 2017 to expand into new markets, with exports supporting more than 80 percent of the company’s employees.
- Wilmington Paper Corporation, a family-owned small business in Pine Brook, New Jersey, that exports scrap paper for recycling. It has used EXIM’s export credit insurance for environmentally beneficial exports since 2009, with exports accounting for about 40 percent of total sales.
Nearly 90 percent of EXIM’s authorizations directly support small businesses like these award-winners, and as part of EXIM’s recent reauthorization, Congress directed EXIM to build on the agency’s robust support of small business even further. These companies have successfully leveraged two of EXIM’s key tools for small businesses — export credit insurance and working capital loan guarantees — to support their sales around the globe.
“It is especially important to recognize exporters, because each and every exporter is an ambassador to the world at large,” said EXIM Board Member Spencer Bachus III. “When someone elsewhere on the globe sees ‘Made in the USA’ on something he or she has bought, it’s a connection to the hard work of the American workers who built it, the American innovators who conceived it, and the American investors who risked their resources believing in it.”
U.S. companies, particularly small businesses, can utilize EXIM’s financing tools and resources to increase their international sales, showcase their “Made in the USA” products, and sustain American jobs. By partnering with EXIM, exporters can mitigate the risk of nonpayment on international sales, offer credit terms to foreign buyers, and access working capital loan guarantees. In addition, EXIM has implemented several COVID-19 (coronavirus) relief measures for U.S. exporters and financial institutions to enhance the agency’s existing products.
There are more than 300,000 U.S.-based small businesses that are thriving through exporting. Contact us and become one of them.