Tuesday, May 23, 2017
ORLANDO, Fla. (May 23, 2017) – Nearly 40 small and mid-sized businesses that participated in the recent international trade mission to Argentina have reported more than $24 million in expected sales. Additionally, these businesses generated $1.85 million in actual sales during the mission. Governor Rick Scott led the trade mission and it was the first by any U.S. governor under Argentina’s new administration. Governor Scott was the first U.S. governor to meet with Argentine President Mauricio Macri.
Governor Scott said, “It was an honor to lead an economic development mission to Argentina last month to meet with Argentine business leaders and share why Florida is the best location for their companies to grow. It is exciting to see all of the opportunities that were created from our trip and I am proud to announce today that the many companies that participated in this mission have reported more than $24 million in expected sales. Enterprise Florida led this mission and they do important work to connect Florida small business with opportunities in international markets. We are competing in a global economy, and many of these businesses would not have the resources or opportunities to market themselves across the world if not for Enterprise Florida. It is disappointing that the Legislature chose to disregard the impact not fully funding EFI could have on our job creators and families.”
Argentina is Florida’s 10th largest trade partner with more than $4.2 billion in bilateral trade. Enterprise Florida, Inc. (EFI) partnered with the U.S. Commercial Service, the U.S. Embassy in Argentina, the American Chamber of Commerce in Argentina and the Florida Ports Council to ensure a successful mission for the companies in attendance. As a result of strong partnerships, the Florida Ports Council and the Argentine Coordination of Ports signed an MOU to develop direct sea routes between Argentina and Florida.
Manny Mencia, Senior Vice President of International Trade & Development, Enterprise Florida, Inc. said, “Argentina is a great trade partner for our state and thanks to Governor Scott our mission attracted a tremendous amount of media coverage and allowed us to access the highest levels of the Argentine business and government leadership, to effectively promote Florida as the ideal destination for Argentine companies seeking to do business with the U.S.”
Doug Wheeler, President & CEO, Florida Ports Council, said, “Waterborne trade with Argentina already totals more than $1 billion and we value our long-standing relationship. With the signing of the MOU we further strengthened and renewed efforts to explore mutually beneficial technical, cultural and social resources. We look forward to continuing to develop and grow our partnership to increase trade and economic impacts for both countries.”
While the mission was focused on promoting Florida exports to the Argentinean marketplace, EFI and the Argentine Chamber of Commerce and Services (CAC) also collaborated to organize a seminar on business and investment opportunities in Florida. Presenters at the seminar included Governor Scott, Bob Grammig of Holland and Knight, Doug Wheeler of the Florida Ports Council, and Manny Mencia of EFI. More than 120 Argentine business leaders attended.
Susan Amat, CEO/Founder of Venture Hive in Miami, said, “I know the impact that this mission has had on Venture Hive, and our businesses and partners will yield several direct and indirect jobs in the state in the next quarter and a huge return on my investment. I thank Governor Scott and the EFI team for the work they do for job creators every day.”
Alexander Azcurra of Critical Power Solutions in Miami, said, “We look forward to participating in more trade missions. This mission allowed us to connect with other Florida entrepreneurs which will possibly lead to business locally in Florida too. Special thanks to the staff at Enterprise Florida and everyone that put this trade mission together. It was great to meet and speak with Gov. Rick Scott at the U.S. Embassy. Thanks for all you do.”
Arley Bedillion, industrial sales manager, Mastry Engine Center in St. Petersburg, said, “This was a successful mission. I believe we will built some great business relationships here in Buenos Aires. We received a trade grant which lifted some of the financial requirements for joining the mission. Our success is a direct reflection of the efforts and hard work of Enterprise Florida.”
The Enterprise Florida Trade Mission to Argentina Included: