Ohio Small Business Utilizes EXIM Export Credit Insurance to Export Basketball, Sports, and Performing Arts Flooring Systems to 70 Countries with Support from EXIM New Broker of the Year JZJ Insurance Services
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE November 13, 2020
Office of Communications (202) 565-3203
CINCINNATI, Ohio — Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) President and Chairman Kimberly A. Reed today presented an EXIM 2020 Exporter of the Year award to Robbins Sports Surfaces, a family-owned small business that manufactures sports flooring systems featuring hardwood maple flooring, and toured the company’s facilities in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Robbins, established as a flooring installation company in 1894, manufactures high-performance maple and synthetic flooring systems for sports and performing arts venues that can be found in 70 countries. Robbins’ flooring systems are used by National Basketball Association (NBA) and Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) professional teams; National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) programs; and thousands of school, college, university, and recreational facilities across the United States, Canada, and the world.
Pictured from left to right: Jairo Vargas, Robbins International Sales Manager; Pat Folz, Robbins CFO; John Ficks, Robbins Global Sales and Marketing Manager; Jay Stoehr, Robbins Chairman and Owner; Jim Remmel, Robbins Finance; Kimberly A. Reed, EXIM Chairman
“Robbins Sports Surfaces is an Ohio small business success story that also makes jobs possible in states like Wisconsin and Michigan, where the strong maple hardwood trees that comprise these beautiful floors are grown and harvested. Be it your local elementary school gymnasium, your favorite NBA team, or a nationally recognized performing arts center, the high-performance sports floor very well could be Robbins. EXIM’s export credit insurance helps bring these high-quality ‘Made in the USA’ systems — made by U.S. workers — to floors in countries around the world,” said Chairman Reed. “As a 2020 Exporter of the Year, Robbins Sports Surfaces exemplifies how EXIM supports innovative small businesses as they compete in the global marketplace and support American jobs.”
To access new markets abroad, Robbins has relied on EXIM’s export credit insurance for its international sales strategy since 2003. EXIM’s insurance enabled the company to offer customers favorable payment terms needed to secure new projects and grow international sales. That allowed Robbins to further increase sales in its original markets and expand into new countries. EXIM supports approximately 50 percent of Robbins’ international sales, and exports sustain the jobs of the entire workforce of 180 employees. Since 2014, EXIM has supported exports valued at more than $7 million.
“Robbins is a small family business operating in a global market. The assistance provided by EXIM allows us to compete at a higher level when meeting demand for athletic flooring systems for projects around the world,” said John Ficks, Global Sales and Marketing Manager for Robbins. “EXIM makes it possible for Robbins to extend payment terms to our export customers who are often small businesses with limited access to credit. Our ability to compete internationally not only assists Robbins in our success, but supports the entire community of working Americans involved in the hardwood forestry community.”
Robbins export credit insurance policies are facilitated by EXIM broker JZJ Insurance Services, Inc., a specialized insurance agency headquartered in Columbus, Ohio, that focuses on trade credit and political risk insurance for small and medium-sized businesses. While visiting Robbins, Chairman Reed also presented the New Broker of the Year award to JZJ President Jack Johnstone.
“We at JZJ Insurance Services are grateful to Chairman Kimberly Reed and the Export-Import Bank of the United States for being steadfast supporters of U.S. exporters during these difficult times. We also hail companies like Robbins Sports Surfaces for demonstrating the importance of family-owned companies to the U.S. economy,” said JZJ President Jack Johnstone.
Since 2014, EXIM has supported exports valued at $5 billion from 211 companies — including 151 small businesses like Robbins Sports Surfaces — across Ohio. Approximately 90 percent of EXIM authorizations directly support small businesses.
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.