World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) has been awarded $390,000 through the State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) administered by the U.S. Small Business Administration to provide grants to local companies.
The purpose of the STEP Grant is to increase the number of small businesses that are exporting and help existing exporting companies grow. Utah businesses that meet the eligibility requirements can receive up to $15,000 in funding for their international activities. A 25 percent cash match by the grant recipient is required.
“When we invest in small businesses, we are investing in the future of our economy,” said Derek B. Miller, president and CEO of WTC Utah. “The STEP Grant accelerates the development of these companies by opening up doors to global business opportunities. World Trade Center Utah is honored to be the steward of such an important grant.”
STEP Grants can be applied to export related activities including participation in foreign trade missions, foreign market sales trips and services provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce. Other activities that qualify include designing international marketing campaigns, export trade show exhibits, training workshops and more.
“The Small Business Administration is pleased to be able to provide funding that helps businesses grow globally,” said Steve Price, acting district director of the Utah Small Business Administration. “An estimated 85 percent of Utah’s exporting companies are small to medium sized enterprises. These companies are prime candidates to benefit from the STEP Grant.”
The STEP Grant application will open Oct. 9 and close Oct. 31. Companies interested in using STEP Grant funding for any activities over the next year need to apply within this timeframe. Additional information about the STEP Grant, including eligibility requirements, approved activities and how to apply, can be viewed at www.wtcutah.com/step.
World Trade Center Utah and the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) are planning three trade missions and four trade shows during the grant year. STEP Grant money can be used to attend one of these trips.
2018 trade missions:
- Mexico in April
- London in July in connection with the Farnborough International Airshow
- Taiwan in September
2018 trade shows:
- Arab Health in Dubai, Jan. 9-Feb 1
- JEC Composites in Paris, March 6-8
- Farnborough International Airshow in the United Kingdom, July 16-22
- Outdoor Friedrichshafen in Germany, June 17-20
Companies may be able to utilize STEP Grant funds to attend other international trade shows, a list of which can be viewed at www.wtcutah.com/step. The State Trade Expansion Program is in its sixth year, but this is the first year WTC Utah will manage the grant through a contract with the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.
The U.S. Small Business Administration awarded $18 million in funds to 44 states for FY 2017.