Visits Louisiana Small Business that Utilizes EXIM’s Export Credit Insurance to Export Clean Water Services Worldwide
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE December 3, 2020
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LAFAYETTE, Louisiana — Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) Board Member Spencer Bachus yesterday presented a 2020 Exporter of the Year award to H2O LLC, a small business in Lafayette, Louisiana, that provides water treatment solutions for offshore oil and gas markets as well as marine industries.
H2O was founded in 1980, with a mission of providing high-quality water treatment solutions for the offshore oil and gas markets, later expanding into the commercial marine industry. Over the years, the company has designed and built thousands of systems that provide potable water using reverse osmosis desalination, help control biofouling utilizing electrochlorination technology, and treat sewage to meet environmental discharge standards — along with a full array of replacement parts and services for these systems — for clients around the world.
Pictured, left to right: Warren Bares, J. Maxime Roy President; Jess Fike, H2O CEO; EXIM Board Member Spencer Bachus; and Aamir Sundrani, H2O Executive Vice President.
“It was an honor to present H2O with the EXIM Exporter of the Year Award for outstanding support of U.S. exports,” said EXIM Board Member and former Congressman Spencer Bachus. “H2O is an example of the impact that small businesses have, not only by sustaining American jobs, but also by providing access to clean water that improves the lives of people around the world.”
Board Member Bachus, who formerly represented Alabama in the U.S. House of Representatives, met with officials at H2O’s headquarters in Lafayette, Louisiana. As H2O grew its international customer base, it turned to EXIM’s export credit insurance to maintain an acceptable level of risk for a small business with 38 employees. The company’s water treatment projects allow it to utilize EXIM support for environmentally beneficial exports.
As a result, H2O was able to get a more accurate assessment of customers’ credit worthiness, which allowed it to make better credit decisions. With clients in Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America, and South America, the small business has been able to expand into new geographical markets and increase global sales. In 2019, international sales constituted about 37 percent of total sales, but are on track to exceed 50 percent in 2020. Since 2017, EXIM has supported H2O’s exports valued at more than $4.4 million to more than two dozen countries. The company’s policies are facilitated by EXIM broker J. Maxime Roy, Inc., headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana, with offices in Texas, South Carolina, and New York.
“EXIM’s export credit insurance program has allowed us to make additional credit sales to clients that would otherwise pose too great a risk for a small company,” said Jess Fike, CEO of H2O.
Since 2014, EXIM has supported exports valued at $890 million from 104 companies — including 72 small businesses like H2O — across Louisiana.
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 programs.
EXIM is an independent federal agency that promotes and supports American jobs by providing competitive and necessary export credit to support sales of U.S. goods and services to international buyers. A robust EXIM can level the global playing field for U.S. exporters when they compete against foreign companies that receive support from their governments. EXIM also contributes to U.S. economic growth by helping to create and sustain hundreds of thousands of jobs in exporting businesses and their supply chains across the United States. In recent years, approximately 90 percent of the total number of the agency’s authorizations has directly supported small businesses. Since 1992, EXIM has generated more than $9 billion for the U.S. Treasury for repayment of U.S. debt.
For more information about EXIM, please visit www.exim.gov.