The National Marine Manufacturers Association(NMMA) announced today a new Export Development initiative that expands and formalizes its existing international efforts and offerings for its members. The new program helps NMMA members better connect with emerging international growth opportunities and realize untapped potential in the international market.
Nearly ninety six percent of consumers live outside the U.S. (International Trade Resource Center), creating significant potential for the U.S. recreational boating industry, which is already a net exporting industry.
“More and more marine businesses are embracing exporting as a way to increase sales and navigate seasonal downturns. The U.S. Department of Commerce reports that, on average, companies that export grow faster, pay higher wages and are more profitable than those that do not so it’s critical that the U.S. marine industry capture its share of the global market,” noted Thom Dammrich, NMMA president. “Our new Export Development program gives NMMA members an added advantage through direct assistance in navigating important export markets.”
NMMA has managed international pavilions at shows around the world on behalf of members, including the successful U.S. pavilion at METS, and has worked to help grow exports of U.S. made recreational boating products. In fact, the NMMA Abstract shows that since 2007, there has been a positive balance in U.S. trade of recreational boats and marine engines. In terms of export value, boats and engines totaled $2.2 billion in 2011, up 0.6 percent from 2010.
To help its members fully explore international opportunities, NMMA’s Export Development program will be led by Julie Balzano, who joins NMMA as Export Development Director, bringing more than 20 years of exporting experience. Together with the U.S. Department of Commerce (USDOC), Balzano will focus on developing and implementing a comprehensive program that works with NMMA members to target both established and long term emerging international markets through counseling, training, group pavilions at key international boat shows and relationship building. In addition, NMMA will work with the USDOC to identify key U.S. boat and sport shows to which they would bring potential dealers and distributors. These reverse trade missions would supplement the proactive and more vital efforts of attending international shows and will further solidify relationships made overseas.
“Julie brings a level of international expertise we have never had before that allows us to deliver a more comprehensive export and international program for our members,” said Dammrich.
Prior to joining the NMMA team, Balzano worked as director for Mexico and the Marine Industry Sector in the International Trade Division of Enterprise Florida, the country’s premier economic development trade organization.
Logo courtesy of the National Marine Manufacturers Association