OLYMPIA — Washington’s Department of Commerce received a $1 million federal grant to help small companies increase their export business.
The U.S. Small Business Administration awarded a total of $20 million to 49 states, including Washington, through its State Trade Expansion Program.
The state commerce department will use the money to support export assistance programs, including export vouchers that can offset the cost of doing business internationally.
Export vouchers can reimburse business owners with up to $10,000 in export-eligible expenses.
“Helping small businesses access international markets and partnerships is a proven growth strategy and outstanding return on investment,” Commerce Director Mike Fong said in a statement.
“Our State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) provides support to companies who might otherwise not have the resources to develop relationships and navigate the complexities of selling their goods and services overseas,” said Fong, who previously served as Snohomish County’s chief recovery and resilience officer.
“The grant allowed us to send a team member overseas to network with existing customers and generate new leads,” said Chelsea Hanjy, chief financial officer of Hanjy Trading, an Ellensburg-based company.
“New clients for our business mean we can secure jobs for current employees with the hope of expanding operations and hiring new employees and creating jobs,” Hanjy said. “We are very grateful for the opportunity.”
The funding also supports more than a dozen trade shows and trade missions for the next 12 months, Fong said.
For more information about export vouchers and other Commerce programs, go to ChooseWashington.com