Nationwide Outreach Effort Underscores EXIM’s Commitment to Supporting U.S. Small Businesses; Continues Momentum with Launch of “All America” Video
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE September 30, 2020
Office of Communications (202-565-3203)
WASHINGTON — Export-Import Bank of the United States (EXIM) President and Chairman Kimberly A. Reed today announced completion of the agency’s All America Initiative, during which EXIM officials held educational and outreach events in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and five U.S. territories to highlight how American companies can utilize EXIM support to grow their business through exporting.
An outreach event held today in partnership with the Vermont Agency of Commerce and Community Development and small business exporter Darn Tough Vermont® marks the completion of the All America Initiative. The effort was first launched by EXIM Chairman Reed in May 2019 after a quorum of the EXIM Board of Directors was restored, with a goal of reaching, educating, and informing U.S. companies of all sizes — with a particular focus on small businesses — about how they can leverage EXIM’s financing tools and resources to increase their international sales, showcase their “Made in the USA” products, and sustain American jobs.
To view the All America Initiative video, please click here.
Since then, Chairman Reed and Board Members Judith D. Pryor and former Congressman Spencer Bachus, along with EXIM staff members, have held events throughout the United States with stakeholders, including with companies, Chambers of Commerce, Regional Export Promotion Program (REPP) members, trade associations, and other organizations. The Initiative began with in-person events, then pivoted to virtual engagements after the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Supporting U.S. small businesses is one of my and EXIM’s top priorities. Our ‘All America Initiative,’ which launched my first day at EXIM, has expanded our agency’s reach and engagement with current and potential U.S. exporters in every state, five territories, and the District of Columbia,” said Chairman Reed. “Though this initial initiative is complete, our ‘All America’ video will continue the momentum as we work hard every day to educate and engage businesses seeking to export their great ‘Made in the USA’ products to the world. I want to give special thanks to EXIM Director and former Congressman Spencer Bachus for his leadership on this effort, as well as to EXIM Office of Small Business Senior Vice President Jim Burrows, Vice President of Outreach and Education Elizabeth Thomas, and the entire Office of Small Business team.”
Since being sworn in, Chairman Reed has visited numerous EXIM customers, including DecoArt, a small business headquartered in Stanford, Kentucky. The company manufactures a broad range of acrylic paints and craft supplies, and since 1993, it has relied on EXIM’s export credit insurance to support its international sales to more than two dozen countries. The company’s policy is facilitated by EXIM registered broker Trade Acceptance Group, Ltd., of Edina, Minnesota.
Nearly 90 percent of EXIM’s total authorizations directly support small businesses like DecoArt. Since the Board quorum was restored, EXIM has authorized more than 2,000 small business transactions. As part of EXIM’s recent reauthorization, Congress directed the agency to build on its robust support of small business even further, and the All America Initiative underscored EXIM’s commitment to fulfill that mission.
In addition, EXIM’s recent 2020 Annual Conference, which reached an all-time record of more than 1,700 registrants, included the first-ever small business track, and 13 small businesses were honored as Exporters of the Year. The new All America video, which is set to the song “America the Beautiful” as sung by Ray Charles, was previewed at the 2020 Annual Conference and makes its official debut today on EXIM’s website to raise further awareness about EXIM’s programs via social media.
“The All America Initiative has been a significant undertaking by EXIM to reach companies of all sizes in the 50 U.S. states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories,” said Director Bachus. “This project is an example of how EXIM implements its mission to support American workers by facilitating the export of U.S.-made goods and services. EXIM employees engage with businesses every day to educate and inform them of the government resources that are available to help them grow and be part of the global marketplace.”
Among the many EXIM customers Director Bachus has visited is Green Mountain International, a veteran-owned company headquartered in Waynesville, North Carolina. The small business, a leading supplier of chemical grouts for the concrete repair industry, recently began using EXIM’s export credit insurance to protect its international shipments. The company’s policy is facilitated by EXIM registered broker Global Business Solutions, Inc., of Winston-Salem, North Carolina.
During her tenure, Director Pryor also has visited numerous EXIM companies, including Schacht Spindle Company a family-owned company based in Boulder, Colorado. The small business, one of the world’s leading makers of handweaving looms and spinning wheels, has been using EXIM’s export credit insurance since 2017 to support exports to more than a dozen countries. The company’s policy is facilitated by EXIM registered broker J. Maxime Roy, Inc., headquartered in Lafayette, Louisiana, with offices in Texas, South Carolina, and New York.
“Over 2,000 transactions directly supporting small businesses have been approved since May 2019, when EXIM’s full operating authority was restored, including several requiring Board-level approval,” said Director Pryor. “I was pleased to visit with one of those companies last year, the Schacht Spindle Company in Boulder, Colorado, to see firsthand how this small business uses EXIM’s finance tools to help grow overseas sales of its custom-made looms and the more than 1,200 wooden parts made in-house. Proud of the company he established in 1969 with his now retired brother Dan, Barry Schacht continues to manage the company with his wife Jane Patrick, the creative director, and his son-in-law Michael Yaeger, the COO, along with their small employee base of about 50. This is a company that truly embodies the essence of the American entrepreneurial spirit. It’s quite rewarding to see.”
Throughout the 16 months of the All America Initiative, EXIM staff have outlined opportunities to support small businesses with EXIM’s export financing that can enable them to increase current sales or expand into new markets. By partnering with EXIM, exporters can mitigate the risk of nonpayment on international sales and offer credit terms to foreign buyers, and access working capital loan guarantees.
In addition, EXIM has provided COVID-19 (coronavirus) relief measures for U.S. exporters and financial institutions that work in tandem with the agency’s existing programs. EXIM also recently extended measures to assist U.S. exporters and financial institutions located in states that may be declared federal disaster areas by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) due to the effects of recent hurricanes or wildfires.
Small business owners can learn more about EXIM’s products and services, or request a consultation, here.
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.