Article Information Report

602 WordsMar 30, 20093 Pages
Most people imagine businesses that go global to be massive corporations with vast shipyards and warehouses. However, this is sometimes not the case. Montoya, a comic-strip artist in Santa Ana, California, has grown her small business by exporting. She sells her colorful cartoon characters for use on snack packages in China, Ecuador, Colombia and other far-away places. She tells other entrepreneurs of all types of business to think about going global. Montoya estimates that revenues at her company, Los Kitos Entertainment LLC, have grown between 30% and 40% since she started exporting two-and-a-half years ago. Many entrepreneurs want to tap into the world marketplace, but shy away because they're intimidated by language barriers, currency exchanges and the risk of getting stiffed by an overseas buyer. The reality is those barriers are becoming less onerous thanks to technology and globalization. Additionally, new products and services, including programs sponsored by the U.S. government, are popping up to help entrepreneurs foray into foreign markets. Earlier this month, the Import-Export Bank launched a new, web-based service to help U.S. companies more easily and quickly buy insurance covering shipments of goods or services to other countries. Ex-Im Bank, a little-known government agency created during the Depression to boost international trade, designed the more user-friendly web service with the small-business owner in mind. For small companies, Ex-Im Bank is often the only place to turn for protection on shipments of overseas orders, as the private sector typically doesn't want to take on the risk. Insurance is critical when it comes to exporting. For example, a small-business owner who manufactures bicycles might get a big order from a buyer in Japan. Usually, the buyer won’t pay in advance so the small-business owner needs to buy insurance.
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