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Press Release for Monday, November 10, 2008

SBDC Trade Certificate Series on Exporting Holds Graduation

Contact: Joanna Norris, Assistant Director
Department of Media Relations and Events
(904) 620-2102

Thirty-one small business owners recently graduated from the University of North Florida Small Business Development Center’s (SBDC) International Trade Certificate Series on Exporting.

Participants of the series attended six weeks of classes, which featured a variety of experts with first-hand knowledge and experience in international trade, networking opportunities with local resources, direct access to technical assistance providers, and a live case study in each session.

Highlights from the export series included sessions on doing business in other areas of the world such Asia and the Caribbean, logistics and freight forwarding, legal considerations, financing and payment mechanisms and market research to name a few.

This six-week course was brought back by popular demand after it was presented earlier this year. The SBDC at UNF responded to the numerous requests from business owners for a repeat of the certificate series by offering the 24-hour program for a second time this year.

“It’s exciting to bring together business owners wanting to know more about the opportunities in exporting, said Cathy Hagan, area director for the SBDC at UNF and lead instructor for the series. “The sessions armed participants with information and introduced them to resources that can help.”

Tom Sivik, an employee of Southeastern Metals Manufacturing, Inc., was a participant in the series and says he benefited from the knowledge and networking provided in the series. “This class should be a requirement when companies think about exporting. I highly recommend it,” he said.

The exporting certificate series was developed and presented by the UNF SBDC, with support from UNF’s Division of Continuing Education, the U.S. Department of Commerce, Enterprise Florida and JaxPort. In the spring of 2009, SBDC will partner with the Clay County Chamber of Commerce to present the program as part of a grant they received from Enterprise Florida.

Since 1976, the SBDC at UNF has helped more than 30,000 small businesses in an 18-county area. The SBDC, located at the UNF University Center, provides assistance through management advice and technical training with little to no-cost to potential, fledgling and/or well-established small business owners.