International Trade & Innovation in Greater Reading, PA


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Greater Reading has a progressive, business-oriented community with a vision for the future. It is focused on creating new opportunities for growth and enabling greater possibilities.

Visionary thinkers, entrepreneurs and pioneers have always been attracted to Greater Reading.

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  • We “cast the net” for resources to help new and existing companies – especially to get through the alphabet soup of potential resources and supporting programs - be it workforce, financing,
  • Our story in Berks - Our message – we are growing and we strive to embrace our diversity.
  • Many major companies are headquartered here or have substantial operations in Greater Reading. Top Employers: Reading Health System, East Penn Manufacturing, Carpenter Technology, St. Joseph Medical Center, Redner’s Warehouse Markets, Boscov’s, Weis Markets, Penske Truck Leasing, Giant Food Stores, Sovereign (Santander) Bank, Med-Ed/First Energy, Associated Wholesalers, Ashley Furniture Industries
  • There is wide representation of international companies in Greater Reading representing banking, food, metal fabrication, plastics manufacturing,
  • Women-owned business sampling – from food to production services, legal, graphic design, and personnel, and distribution
  • Why is Greater Reading an excellent choice to locate a new company or grow an existing company?
  • Matt Lindenmuth, founder and owner is a former Professional X games star (born and raised in Berks County) – Double Lindy He has raised money for the brewery through Kick Starter. Originally known for the Stonefly IPA, the craft brewery has put out seasonal products such as Cucumber Kolsch, North Ramp Stout (an oatmeal and coffee base) Since officially launching in March 2013 Saucony Creek Brewing Company has developed a presence in 32 eastern Pennsylvania counties and caused quite a stir during Philly Beer Week 2013 – the story here is all about the use of social networking in order to enhance exponentially the market for your product.
  • Counties served: Adams, Berks, Cumberland, Dauphin, Franklin, Lancaster, Lebanon & York Give example of GAP Global Access Program (GAP) grant - which can be used for overseas trade show participation, overseas trade mission participation, foreign market sales trip Give example of how WTC assists with a company who wants to export product (James).
  • Foreign-Trade Zone #147 is a regional economic development project that encompasses the counties of Adams, Berks, Dauphin, Cumberland, Franklin, Lancaster, Lebanon, Perry, and York.
  • These sites offer the best incentive that is offered by the Commonwealth.
  • We are here to help you navigate the resources and network, network, network
  • International Trade & Innovation in Greater Reading, PA

    1. 1. Succeeding as a Latino Business Owner in International Trade & Innovation October 3, 2013 Pamela Shupp, AICP, CEcD Vice President Greater Reading Economic Partnership
    2. 2. Greater Reading Economic Partnership (GREP) markets Berks County to attract business to our region and works with existing businesses to make sure they stay here and grow. Our mission is to attract, retain and grow businesses in Greater Reading. We align businesses with opportunities to help them be something greater. 2 Who is GREP and what do we do?
    3. 3. Greater Reading, PA • Population: 413,000 and growing • Population growth: 9.7% • Diverse population: – Berks County 16.4% Latino – City of Reading 60% Latino o 88,000 people • Over 400 companies are headquartered in Greater Reading 3
    4. 4. Greater Reading Major Companies
    5. 5. Greater Reading, PA: Internationally Owned Companies – Australia – Belgium – Canada – Denmark – England – France – Germany – Ireland – Israel – Japan – Lebanon – Mexico – Netherlands – Spain – Sweden – Turkey 5 • Over 70+ companies internationally owned, representing:
    6. 6. Greater Reading is also home to many small & entrepreneurial women-owned businesses 6
    7. 7. Why Greater Reading? • Over 100 million people within an overnight’s drive • Reliable electric grid • Low risk for natural disasters • Good management relations • Competitive wage manufacturing • Foreign Trade Zone (FTZ) 147 • Keystone Opportunity Zones (KOZ) • Convenient access to major Northeast markets 7
    8. 8. New and Expanding Companies: 8 Birdsboro Kosher Farms
    9. 9. • Saucony Creek Brewing is a craft brewery that has taken off on the social media scene with products that are pre-ordered and can’t be produced fast enough to meet demand. 9
    10. 10. 10 Resources
    11. 11. • The World Trade Center Harrisburg serves companies in central Pennsylvania by: – promoting global trade and delivering relevant educational programs, – up-to-date trade information – practical trade assistance – research & referral services for their members and clients to help them compete and prosper in a global economy. • The organization is a licensed member of the World Trade Centers Association and the regional coordinator for Pennsylvania’s free export assistance services. 11 Tina Weyant , Executive Director (717) 843.1090 ext 246
    12. 12. Foreign Trade Zone 147 12 • Customs duties are not paid on merchandise exported from a zone • Delays in customs clearances and duty drawback are reduced or eliminated • Spare parts may be stored, returned, or destroyed without duty payment
    13. 13. 13 Foreign Trade Zone 147
    14. 14. Keystone Opportunity Zones (KOZ) • Over 250 acres of tax free zones - many with benefits through 2023 and in strategic locations with ease of highway access and high visibility. 14
    15. 15. 15
    16. 16. How do you keep up on all these resources? • Most important is to get connected and stay connected. • Get Social! LinkedIn, FB, Twitter, Pinterest, Blog, FourSquare, YouTube, Flickr… • Whatever way you are comfortable receiving and communicating your message – you can’t communicate enough! • Build relationships 16
    17. 17. Websites You Need to Visit • – Information about general resources, support and KOZ • – Information about Foreign Trade Zone 147 • – Information about exporting and trade assistance 17
    18. 18. Connect with Us! 18 Groups and Companies: Greater Reading Economic Partnership @GreaterReading Logon to:
    19. 19. We are committed to growing companies. Contact Information: (610) 376.4237 Deb Heffner, Economic Development Coordinator Pamela J. Shupp, Vice President