PULLMAN, Wash. — The Washington SBDC has launched an online export assistance portal for Washington small business owners who want to explore and expand their international trade.
 
The no-cost portal includes an export readiness assessment, export resources, an interactive tool defining the trade process, and online training.
 
This comprehensive guide is a great resource for business owners doing some initial exploration, as well as business owners committed to moving forward in international markets.
 
Terry Chambers, Washington SBDC Export Program Director, said the portal took six months to develop and uses a “mind mapping” technology to graphically represent the exporting process and connect users to targeted resources. “We intend that this new, innovative method of delivering information will make it easier and more intuitive for business owners to understand the exporting process,” Chambers said. “We have compiled a wealth of valuable resources and organized them in such a way that users will be able to find the information and/or resources they need right at their fingertips.”
 
The portal is at http://export.wsbdc.org and can be used independently or as part of one-on-one consultations with a Washington SBDC international trade specialist.
 
New-to-Export seminars scheduled across Washington state
In an effort to expand the “Culture of Exporting” in our State the Washington SBDC and the International Trade Alliance are presenting seminars in Yakima, Seattle and Spokane for business owners interested in preparing for or expanding their export capabilities. Attendees get access to real entrepreneurs that have successfully exported and get to build a relationship with their local international trade specialists with the Washington SBDC to help educate and prepare them to successfully export. This one-on-one, no-cost advising is the cornerstone of Washington SBDC’s services to help our clients build and implement real world plans to take their companies where they want them to go.
 
The seminars will be held Aug. 3-4 in Yakima, Sept. 14-16 in Seattle and Oct. 5-7 in Spokane. For more information and to register, visit http://export.wsbdc.org or http://wsbdc.org/specialty-training.
 
The Washington SBDC Export Readiness program is part of a statewide export initiative sponsored through a grant by the Washington State Community Economic Revitalization Board which is administrated by the Washington Department of Commerce. The Washington SBDC has also partnered with the Washington State University Impact Center to assist with agricultural research and with the International Trade Alliance in Spokane to offer export workshops across the state.
 
The Washington SBDC promotes economic vitality within Washington communities by providing expert business advising, demand-driven training, and applied research to existing businesses and entrepreneurs. The Washington SBDC is a cooperative effort of WSU, other educational institutions, economic development organizations and the U.S. Small Business Administration.
 
For more information on the mission and services of the WSBDC visit the network web site at wsbdc.org.