World Tradewinds


May-June 2004 - Issue N. 123
A Publication of the Monterey Bay International Trade Association (MBITA)


MBITA CORPORATE SPONSORS:



Central Coast Angel Network

Victory

Lexus

 


MBITA PARTNERS & AFFILIATES:



UPCOMING EVENTS:

Tuesday, June 29
MBITA Luncheon
Think Local and Act Global with Congressman Sam Farr
Sponsored by
First National Bank
Old Fisherman's Grotto

Monterey, CA
Time: 11:30am - 1:30pm
For more info click here

Monday, June 21

Luncheon
Plant Patents and the Plant Protection Act
Presented by IP Society
in conjunction with MBITA
Old Fisherman's Grotto
Monterey, CA

Time: 11:00am - 2:00pm
For more info click here


Thursday, July 22
MBITA Luncheon
IT and Ag Technology Exports to China
Presented by MBITA in conjunction with
Silicon Valley CITD

China One Int'l Buffet
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Time: 11:30am to 1:30pm
Iinformation will be posted soon in the MBITA
Events Page


Friday, August 27
COPES Seminar
Organic Export - Succeeding in the Global Marketplace
Anaheim, CA
Time: 8:30am - 2:00pm

Registration: $30
(includes lunch)

For more info click
here


To register for MBITA luncheons and events, call 831-469-0148 or email info@mbita.org including the event specifics you are signing up for in the subject line.


For more details on MBITA events, go to www.mbita.org/events/home.php


MBITA BOARD OF DIRECTORS:

President
Tony Livoti
MBITA

Vice President
Shay Adams
AIM Medical Sales

Members:

Dr. Edward Valeau
Hartnell College
Salinas

Victor Cordell
Monterey Institute of International Studies (MIIS)

Marcelo Siero
IdeasSiero

Jim Faith
TradePort.org

Staff:

Cristina Polesel
General Manager
MBITA

Emi Hirano
Marketing Assistant
MBITA


725 Front St. Ste 104
Santa Cruz, CA 95060 U.S.A.
Phone: 1-831-469-0148
Fax: 1-831-469-0917
Email: info@mbita.org
Web: www.mbita.org

If you would like to have an article published on this newsletter please contact the editor by email.

This newsletter has been created by MBITA's editor
Cristina Polesel
cristina@mbita.org


MBITA Members and Corporate Sponsors' Newsletter Links

CalTrade Report

Small Business Technology Review



World TradeWinds Sponsorship Information

World TradeWinds is a monthly eZine distributed to over 3,000 subscribers located statewide, nationwide and overseas. The newsletter is also distributed to eight Tradeport.org service centers located throughout California, representing over 30,000 small to mid-sized enterprises.

....

Call the MBITA office at
831-469-0148 for sponsorship rates and benefits.


 

    IN THIS ISSUE:

MBITA's UPDATE

MBITA has been invited to participate in the California Trade Partners (CTP) advisory committee to Secretary Sunne McPeak’s Business, Transportation and Housing (BTH) agency. The purpose of the advisory committee is to determine how the State can utilize new technologies through the TradePort website and the CalTrade Coalition network to better serve California companies to expand their markets globally. MBITA is now researching more cost-effective and efficient methods for TradePort to provide seamless trade promotion services through online trade transaction technologies and collaborative solutions for businesses throughout the State. Stay tuned for some exciting developments for MBITA and TradePort in the coming months.

Please go to MBITA newsletter archives to see MBITA Members profiles and visit MBITA's Export Promotion Services.




Tony Livoti
President
tlivoti@mbita.org

 

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MBITA Corporate Sponsor:

First National Bank, South Valley National Bank, San Benito Bank, Santa Barbara Bank & Trust, and Pacific Capital Bank, are proud to be corporate sponsors of MBITA!

The five banks named above are associated as a Network of Community Bank’s. This association enables each Bank to maintain their separate name, identity and unique culture that define premier banking in their distinct neighborhoods. They are best known for their quality customer service with a strong community-orientation, and yet their combined strength enables them to offer a variety of international banking solutions for their commercial clients.

The following fictitious “case study” relays a common trade scenario for companies who do business internationally. The case study will demonstrate how a general description of a company’s common business practices can help the Bank match financial solutions to the Company’s international banking needs:

Sophisticated International Inc. is a manufacturer of high quality luggage, which is exported all over the world.

The leather for their suitcase line is sourced from a company in Texas and the finished product is assembled at the Sophisticated factory in Salinas, by American craftsmen. Management had made a strategic decision years ago to stay away from the direct marketing of their product. Instead, they rely upon distributors all over the world, who purchase the merchandise and sell it in their respective markets. The average sale to each distributor translates to about $100,000 per shipment. Sophisticated is requesting a working capital line to support the company’s growing production demands. In reviewing the Sophisticated Profit & Loss statement, it appears that there is a substantial and re-occurring Accounts Payable item to one specific company in Asia named “Bukl-Rite”, indicating that they are also importing raw materials.

Sophisticated has one distributor in Western Europe that they have been doing business with for 8 years and is by far the Company’s oldest and most trusted counterpart. Last year alone, this single distributor imported $400,000 worth of Sophisticated luggage, using commercial Letters of Credit. Both parties are estimated to have paid about $10,000 in Letter of Credit-related charges last year. Both Sophisticated and the distributor would like to find less expensive and less burdensome ways in which to transact business going forward.

While Sophisticated International has only provided a short synopsis of the company’s business needs, the Bank is able to identify many financial solutions for Sophisticated’s business transactions! Of course Sophisticated knew that the Bank would be able to provide the working capital line of credit they requested, but they didn’t expect that so many of their international banking needs could be met by the Bank!

SOPHISTICATED'S NEED :


FINANCIAL SOLUTIONS AVAILABLE VIA THE NETWORK OF COMMUNITY BANKS

  • Sophisticated would like to transact business in the foreign currency of the country they are shipping to. At times, they also need to be able to preserve the exchange rate from the time the order is placed to the time the product is manufactured and delivered.





  • Foreign Exchange –
    (Spot and forward transactions)
  • Sophisticated would like to expedite the receipt of payment for goods shipped.
 
  • International Bank Wires (incoming)
  • Sophisticated’s would like to have financial backing for deals with the distributors who are not well known to them.
 
  • Export Letters of Credit
  • Sophisticated would like to provide financial backing for the deals with their frequent supplier, Bukl-Rite, as well.
 
  • Import Letter of Credit
  • Because Sophisticated has a trusted relationship with their largest distributor and is confident to receive payment, they’d like to limit the bank’s responsibility to assuring that the transaction documentation is correct. Both seller and buyer would like to save money on transaction fees.



  • Documentary Collections for goods purchased by their largest distributor.
    This more limited service will save both parties money.
  • Sophisticated would like to provide financial backing for deals with their domestic suppliers, as well.

  • Commercial Letters of Credit

Sophisticated will benefit from the services mentioned above as well as from the many other business services available to them through the Network of Community Banks!

  • First National Bank
  • South Valley National Bank
  • San Benito Bank
  • Santa Barbara Bank & Trust
  • Pacific Capital Bank

MBITA members are welcomed to call for solutions to your international and domestic banking needs!

The International Banking Group is staffed by the following professionals:

Becky Venard
Vice President Northern Region (831) 658-4614
email: bvenard@1stnational.com
Web: www.1stnational.com

Shawn Walters
Vice President & Product Manager

 

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MBITA Corporate Sponsor

Crop•Circle•Studios is celebrating its sixth year of business in Monterey, California. Creative Director and Founder Bob Homami established the full service media design firm as a “gathering field” for seasoned artisans to nurture and unleash their creativity and talent in a purposeful manner. “I’m really excited about the team that’s on board, the momentum we’ve created and the opportunities that are presenting themselves,” said Homami.

“PowerfuI•Impressions™,” the dynamic result promised to each client is based on the idea of the astonishing crop circle designs that have mysteriously appeared in fields around the world. From simple to elaborate, these crop circles are powerful impressions left behind by unknown artists to inspire the audience. “We harness that power and apply it for each of our clients,” said Erik Chappins, the company’s Art Director. “Each of our circle makers,” as he referred to the team members, “brings experience from multiple markets and unique, superior skills to our ‘field’ of play, literally allowing our design circle to function without boundaries.”

By leveraging the imaginative minds and stellar capabilities of professionals from across the realm of communication the company has positioned itself to be a leader in media design on the Central Coast. Production Director Tommy Thompson said, “We effectively engage ‘bleeding edge’ technologies.” He continued, “We call them ‘bleeding edge’ because that is the actual impact point of cutting edge. We adhere to three simple philosophies: exceptional quality, fast turn-around and reasonable pricing. Our technologies, ethics, business methodology, matrix model of scalable resources and our proprietary Internet based proofing environment, makes us a clear choice for any size project, anywhere.”

Their product can be witnessed in a variety of media representing an equal variety of clientele.
Crop•Circle• Studios has the following service offerings:

Creative

• Marketing & Advertising Strategy / Campaign
• Creative / Script Writing
• Public Relations / Communication Strategies
• Character Design & Development
• Producing / Directing
Print

• Corporate ID Logo / Brand Design
• Advertising / Marketing Collateral Design
• Stationery Systems & Business Cards
• Trade Show Booth Design


Interactive

• CD-ROM
• DVD
• Flash
• Kiosks
• Websites
• Programming

Motion

• Broadcast Design & Animation
• Digital Effects & Animation for Film
• Educational / Industrial Videos
• Sales / Marketing Videos
• Video Production
• Editing & Compositing

“We don’t just sell our services,” said Homami, “We enter into relationships. We don’t just conceptualize ideas; we achieve a clients’ goal by realizing the vision with unparalleled execution. Boundaries exist only if we believe in them. We have recently launched our “reformation” campaign to celebrate Crop•Circle• Studios’ sixth year in business and look forward to making many more POWERFUL•IMPRESSIONS™.”

“Web site and product media design is becoming a crucial component in a company’s global marketing strategy. The capability of providing a succinct and powerful visual message about your company and its products or services tailored to the business culture of any one particular country is critical for success. We see Crops•Circle•Studios as leaders in the media design industry and MBITA looks forward to some innovative online solutions when using visual media to market products and services throughout the world”, says Tony Livoti of MBITA.


Contact:

Bob Homami
Creative Director
Crop•Circle•Studios
Ph: 831.646.1543
Fax: 831.646.1593
Web: www.cropcirclestudios.com
E-Mail: bob@cropcirclestudios.com


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MBITA Member Story: C Lynch International

Growing Your Company Through International and Government Sales

Start-up companies over the past few years have been faced with the dilemma of growing their companies at a time when investors have fled venture capital market. Many have had to bootstrap operations by concentrating on B2B sales in the US, a slow task fraught with risk. Most entrepreneurs pass over international and government markets, which offer higher margins and reduced volatility, because of the time and energy required to develop those markets.

C Lynch International has developed, and successfully proven, strategies to help new companies tap into these markets. C Lynch International works with clients to identify opportunities, form an appropriate strategy and find the appropriate partners to launch the effort. Chris Lynch, founder of the company, has over twenty years international experience in Europe, Latin America and Asia in advising companies on how to enter new markets. He also understands how government sales work, both in the US and internationally, based on his experience as a US Foreign Service Officer (last Consul General in Hamburg). Chris has an extensive contact network around the globe and knows how to open doors for clients.

Here are some examples of solutions to tough business problems:

  • A California company needing entrée into a South American state-owned company. Created a strategy appropriate to the market and set-up meetings with senior government officials.
  • Five small companies wanting to sell defense products to Latin America. Presented companies at a trade fair and followed up with innovative local production agreements.
  • A software company with a public security application. Created strategy to sell to the US and local governments and found grant programs to finance R&D costs.

Chris Lynch founded C Lynch International in 2002 when he moved to the Bay Area following his career with the State Department. Since then, C Lynch International has worked with clients on projects in Germany, Russia, Kazakhstan, Argentina, Chile, Mexico, Japan, and China. An MBITA member since 2003, Chris says that MBITA "is an excellent networking forum and has some of the most interesting and dynamic programs in California."

Contact

Chris Lynch
CLynch international
Tel. 415-717-1105
email: clynch@clynchinternational.com


 


Poland: the Gateway to the European Union Market
A Report from International Food, Drink and Hospitality Exhibition (IFE) 2004, Warsaw


by Lidia Thompson, MBITA Eastern European Consultant


On May 1, 2004 Poland became a full-fledge member of European Union. When we think about Poland a few names conjure to our minds like Frederick Chopin from the past and Pope John Paul II and Lech Walesa, leader of the Solidarity Movement and Nobel Peace Prize winner, from the present. Solidarity was attributed to the fall of communism in Poland and in Eastern Europe as a whole.



Poland has a strategic location with the Baltic Sea in the north and its two powerful neighbors, Germany on the Western border and Russia on the Eastern border (including the former Soviet Union republics: Belarus, Ukraine and Lithuania). Poland is bordered in the south by Slovakia and the Czech Republic.

Unfortunately, this central location also contributed to Poland's tragic history during the German and Russian occupation. But now Poland is an independent country and its past geographical weakness can become its strength. There has never been a better time than now to take the advantage of the business opportunities available in Poland.


Some facts on Poland:

" Poland is the largest market in Central Europe
" 38+million consumers
" Rapidly growing economy (4.5% average GDP growth over the past 10 years)
" 50% + increase in food imports from 2000 to 2002
" Growing middle class with an increased disposable income and purchasing power















Photo by Jacek Jendrych

I had the pleasure to attend the International Food, Drink & Hospitality Exhibition that was hosted in Warsaw on May 18-20 and this trade show demonstrated that American business should think about the Polish market in a broad spectrum - as a gateway to EU market.


The US Pavilion at IFE was endorsed by United States Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) and was organized by B-FOR International. The FAS supported US companies offering them two participation options, direct participation and a 'catalog' option where their product samples were displayed by FAS staff. MAP funding was also available from the FAS to offset of up to 50% of exhibition-related expenses for this trade show.

Photo by Jacek Jendrych

Five companies decided to exhibit directly with their full range of products at IFE, 2004. There was Ernest & Julio Gallo, one of the largest winemaking operations in the world located in Sonoma, California, Food Source, Inc., Taylor Bros. Farm and Wilbur Packing Company offered dried prunes and nuts and SML International offered health and nutrition products and Weaver Popcorn. East Coast Seafood and US Rice Federation were represented by FAS staff that displayed and offered samples of their various products.

I am a native of Poland and I was very happy to see the progress Poland has made in the last few years. The Polish people are very optimistic and excited about being a part of the European Union and they all look forward to doing more business with America.

Contact:

Lidia Thompson
MBITA Eastern European Consultant
Monterey Bay International Trade Association (MBITA)
Phone: 831-469-0148
Web: www.mbita.org




 

 

One Global California Conference:
An Economy in Transition- Los Angeles
May 5th, 2004

TradePort Service Center Network:

TradePort Service Centers (9)
US Commercial Service Domestic offices(15)
Centers for Intl. Trade Dev. (CITD) (14)

Other CalTrade Coalition Partners
Ca. Chamber of Commerce
Ports and Cities
Ca. Dept. of Food & Ag (CDFA)
Economic Dev. Corp. (EDCs)
Non Profit Trade Associations
Private Sector Enterprises

2004 brought the State of California a lean budget, a historical deficit and a new Governor with a propensity towards bi-partisan solutions, fresh, new ideas and an agenda for 'Action'. This new administration and the State legislature are now wrangling over the new budget on how to bring California back from the depths of budget wars of energy industry schemes and government waste. Every 'nook and cranny' of the State Government budget are now being scrutinized for budget cuts that might be accompanied with reduced social and economic services.

2004 also brought the elimination of the Technology Trade and Commerce Agency (TTCA) with its 13 California foreign offices scattered throughout the world designed to promote California products and services to foreign markets and also attract foreign investment into California.

This environment was the setting of the One Global California conference held May 5, 2004 at the Millennium Biltmore in Los Angeles, California. Organized by the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, the CalTrade Report and TradePort, two hundred and fifty (250) conference participants attended including businesses and trade promotion groups and associations, local economic development groups, chambers of commerce, banks and Federal government trade promotion groups. The conference presented panels and presentations from the State's trade promotion service leaders discussing how California should now plan to expand globally without TTCA. With exports representing 25% of jobs in California this conference was a timely event with serious issues on how to help California's economy rebound.

An underlying theme behind this conference was that the Swarzenegger administration has given strong signals to government agencies and the private sector that it wants the State government to take more of a coordinating, public relations role to promote California products and services abroad, rather than actually implementing trade promotion services as it has in the past. This approach clearly represents Governor Swarzenegger's true conservative philosophy in leaving private business to fare on its own, without the State's direct involvement in trade promotion services.

Swarzenegger's Business, Transportation and Housing (BTH) agency, under the leadership of high-powered Secretary Sunne McPeak, gave the keynote speech for the conference stressing the effectiveness of public-private consortiums working together leveraging the resources of the State (not necessarily money) with the business expertise of the private sector for an effective strategy to promote California exports and encourage direct foreign investment. This approach was very successful in the late nineties with the unprecedented public-private sector trade promotion program called BAYTRADE.

MBITA, who manages the TradePort.org website which represents over 60,000 California small to mid-sized enterprises through its partnership in the CalTrade Coalition network agrees with Ms.McPeak. "We see TradePort as the glue to make this kind of marriage between public-private sector trade promotion organizations, when providing trade promotion services to small-to-mid sized enterprises in California, a cost-effective, efficient and doable strategy. TradePort technologies are now being reviewed by MBITA's TradePort team, especially the new web-based collaboration services which make this kind of public-private sector statewide trade promotion project much more feasible than in prior years", says Tony Livoti, President of MBITA.

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