October 25, 2001

Lila White
(804) 692-3110

Jill Lawrence
(804) 371-0049
Governor's International Marketing Award Presented To Two Virginia Companies
-Companies and students across Virginia reap benefits of marketing program -

RICHMOND - Governor Jim Gilmore today announced two Virginia companies have received the prestigious Governor’s Award for Excellence for their participation in the Virginia Economic Development Partnership’s (VEDP) Global Market Research (GMR) Program. Secretary of Commerce and Trade Barry E. DuVal presented the awards to the winning companies and their partnering students and professors today in Williamsburg at the 53rd Virginia Conference on World Trade.

“International trade is a key component to Virginia’s economy,” said Governor Gilmore. “I am always pleased to bring together our existing businesses with the intellectual capital found at Virginia’s universities, to aid in the expansion of the Commonwealth’s international exports.”

Every year, the GMR program teams approximately 30 groups of graduate business students from Virginia’s colleges and universities with companies in the state interested in beginning or expanding their export sales programs. These students, supervised by professors and supported by VEDP trade managers, provide companies with an international marketing plan. The teams present an executive summary and a written document to the company’s top management.

The following companies and partnering schools have been selected to receive the 2000/2001 Governor’s Global Market Research Awards:

• Innovative Solutions International (ISI) of Vienna, an engineering and consulting company specializing in satellite navigation for civil aviation, and George Washington University for researching ISI’s planned entry into new global markets for their “Precision Ware” system. Research indicated that the best potential markets for ISI are in Latin America and Africa. The team conducted a country-by-country analysis, utilizing an optimal entry mode matrix. Key contacts in each recommended country were included in the report.

• System Innovations, Inc. of Fredericksburg, and George Mason University, for determining if potential export markets exist for the company’s “Weather Scene,” a two-year-old system that provides wireless road weather traffic and pavement data requiring no infrastructure. The team recommended five key markets to approach, and addressed how to distribute the system. The team included plans for a human resources strategy, a marketing budget and a competitive analysis. The report indicated the importance of the company’s web site to international marketing and how to better define System Innovation’s image to make it user-friendly for foreign customers. Appropriate trade shows were outlined and finally a “SWOT” analysis of the company was included.

“As a specialized high-tech aviation company offering complex systems and services, we are very glad that Virginia is committed to assisting companies like ours to become more successful by encouraging and facilitating exports,” stated ISI Director of Business Development Jason Nelsen. “With the assistance of the top-notch MBA students from George Washington and this VEDP program, we have gained significant advantages in the marketplace.”

“We are very fortunate to have been able to use the academic resources of George Mason University in a cooperative role with our company to significantly expand our marketing effort,” said Gale Ruskosky the Chief Operating Officer of System Innovations. “We have placed the plan into action and look forward to future exports of our road monitoring system. I strongly support the Global Market Research Program and look forward to participating in future projects.”

The GMR program has served as a valuable instrument for the companies involved and for the participating students. The selection of the awards was made from projects undertaken during the fall 2000 and spring 2001 semesters. The GMR program has served over 400 projects since it originated in 1988. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, Virginia exports of goods, services and commodities totaled $10.6 billion and supported 240,000 jobs in 2000.


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