College of the Canyons has received approval from the state Chancellor’s Office to establish a Center for International Trade Development (CITD). This new program will be operated in collaboration with the Small Business Development Center hosted by College of the Canyons (SBDC), opening the doors to begin providing resources, training sessions, expert business advice and consulting services in the areas of international trade.
The CITD system was established in 1998 to help promote the state’s high capacity for international trade competitiveness, assist exporter/importers excel in the international market and continually advance the state’s economic and job growth.
With nine offices located across the state, California CITDs provide a full range of either free or low cost trade assistance services to both companies and individuals looking to expand their international business presence.
“College of the Canyons is committed to the ongoing economic development of our community,” said College of the Canyons Chancellor Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook. “This new opportunity will add a key component to our outstanding menu of services and greatly assist local companies as they expand into new markets.”
As a newly designated CITD, the college’s goal will be to help small business owners and entrepreneurs progress through the various stages of export/import trade development in order to help those businesses grow and succeed.
“We are acutely aware of the need and desire of most of our small business clients to grow sales,” said SBDC director Steve Tannehill who will also serve as CITD director. “For a number of them, the opportunity exists to grow sales by selling into international markets. Accessing those markets can be tricky. Joining the CITD network provides us immediate access to a wealth of resources to help our small business clients start or expand their sales to international markets.”
To launch this new program, in January the SBDC partnered with CITD to host a free Trade Connect Export Workshop at the Dr. Dianne G. Van Hook University Center.
Geared toward small business owners and entrepreneurs interested in expanding their businesses through exporting, the event included presentations by representatives from the Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles World Airports, the U.S. Department of Commerce, and the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) who were on hand to discuss a number of key topics and issues including how to:
- Locate overseas customers
- Finance and insure exporting operations
- Secure air and sea cargo services
- Educate staff about the processes of international trade
The workshop attracted nearly 70 attendees, with many staying well past the end of the event to network with presenters and gather additional information about how to successfully enter the international trade arena.
“Several of our guest speakers indicated this was the most successful Trade Connect event they have ever held in Los Angles County,” said Dr. Dena Maloney, COC Vice President of the Canyon Country Campus and Economic Development. “More importantly, the event showcased the vast resources available to entrepreneurs and companies looking to expand their businesses internationally.
“We look forward to seeing a number of local businesses make 2012 the year they get involved in international trade,” added Maloney.
For more information about the college’s new Center for International Trade Development (CITD) please contact CITD@canyons.edu. For information about the Small Business Development Center hosted by College of the Canyons (SBDC) please contact (661) 362-5900 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit www.cocsbdc.org.