April 15, 2016

A regional strategy for economic growth through exports is showing early success.

Kansas Global Trade Services has documented a minimum of $8.5 million in export sales growth in 2015 as a result of its multi-faceted strategy for international trade. Kansas Global Trade Services (KGTS) is a Wichita-based non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and facilitating international trade.

The growth was primarily reported by 18 companies in the south-central Kansas region who directly interacted with Kansas Global. About $500,000 of the increase came from other Kansas counties. Industries represented include machinery manufacturing, agricultural equipment and services in support of transportation industry.

Two of the 18 companies are participants in the Export Accelerator Grant program developed by Kansas Global and funded by $100,000 from private and public sources.  Those two companies alone reported increased export sales of $1.8 million. Notably, the increased sales occurred against the economic headwind of a “strong” U.S. dollar, which generally restrains U.S. export sales.

The 2015 results are evidence of a successful strategy, according to David Page, Managing Director for the Middle Market for JP Morgan Chase and Co., which contributed $50,000 towards the Export Accelerator Program.

These early successes are great examples of how local regions and economies can thrive when we help arm them with the tools and resources to connect to the global economy,” Page said.  “We’re excited that our investment supporting the export accelerator grant program is helping bring more jobs and opportunity to this area.

The increased exports represent a significant return on investment from activities on the local, state and regional levels. Those activities included the 10-county Regional Export Plan adopted in 2014, the second year of a Kansas Department of Commerce contract for statewide export promotion, the Export Accelerator Grants to regional companies and the day-to-day business services of Kansas Global.

The $8.5 million in exports sales growth is a documented outcome compiled from the direct reporting of companies that interacted with Kansas Global, according to Karyn Page, the organization’s CEO and president.

The sales growth is not just an extrapolation from an overall export total,” she noted. “Instead, it comes directly from participating companies and validates the interactive strategies employed by Kansas Global.

The export sales growth may actually be considerably higher, she noted, because it reflects only 25 percent of the businesses that interacted with Kansas Global in 2015.  The remainder either did not report specific sales or were unable to break out the portion attributable to Kansas Global participation.

However, testimonials from reporting companies were very clear about the impact of Kansas Global services, she said. Companies benefited from increased export sales, and also from operational savings attributed to Kansas Global consultation.

One example comes from a McPherson County business, who reported, “If anything, it seems that Kansas Global could use more resources to be able to provide their expertise and services in other parts of the world.

A Finney County company had a similar response, saying “We received top notch service from KGTS and feel confident about moving forward with our export plans with KGTS’s support.

Dale Goter
Senior Marketing Consultant
Kansas Global Trade Services
316 371 0134