FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 08, 2007



Christie Miller
VEDP
(804) 545-5805
South Boston Company Selected to Participate in Virginia’s VALET Program
-Two-year program provides resources to support international business-


RICHMOND - The Virginia Economic Development Partnership (VEDP) today announced the acceptance of a South Boston company, Hilden America, into its two-year Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET) program. Launched in January 2002, the program assists exporters in the Commonwealth that have firmly established domestic operations and are committed to international exporting as an expansion strategy.

Hilden America joins the program as part of the 12th class of VALET companies. To participate, each eligible business must meet several quantitative criteria and complete an application process. Participating firms are chosen based on their dedication to growth through export. Currently, more than 90 Virginia companies have been accepted to participate in the VALET program.

With more than a century of quality craftsmanship, Hilden America delivers long-lasting, ultra luxury linens to the finest hotels and restaurants. Hilden specializes in long staple, Egyptian cotton bed, table and bath linen, as well as robes and slippers. With a large warehouse and cut-and-sew operations in the U.S. and India, Hilden is able to quickly deliver high-quality products at competitive prices.

Hilden America is a recent graduate of VEDP’s Accessing International Markets (AIM) export development program. The AIM program, launched by VEDP in December 2005, introduces companies across Virginia to new global business opportunities.

“The market for luxury hotel linen is significant and growing in the Caribbean, Latin America and South America,” said Russell Basch, President & CEO. “We get many inquiries from these markets for the exact products we are able to deliver. VALET’s training, networking and resources will be invaluable to help Hilden solidify its export program. We especially look forward to focusing on selling and distribution strategy, translation and legal issues. We appreciate the incalculable opportunities VALET will open up for both Hilden America and our local economy.”

The VALET program incorporates services from a team of experienced international service providers who assist the VALET companies with their international goals. Service providers such as attorneys, Web designers, bankers, translators and freight-forwarders contribute essential skills for expansion into international markets.

“VALET welcomes Hilden America into the program,” said Leslie Parpart, VALET Program Manager. “We look forward to working with its international team over the course of the next two years to assist the company in exceeding export goals.”

The VALET program was recognized as a national model in November 2004 by the National Council for Public-Private Partnerships (NCPPP) for VALET’s innovation in bringing the public and private sectors together to achieve a benefit for the public. The VALET program was the only winner of the 2004 NCPPP Public-Private Partnership Award in the Innovation category.

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership, a marketing organization, was created by the Virginia General Assembly in 1995 to encourage, stimulate, and support the development and expansion of the economy of the Commonwealth. The Partnership is a state authority, which is governed by a 21-member Board of Directors appointed by the Governor and the Virginia General Assembly. To accomplish its objectives of promoting economic expansion within the Commonwealth, the Partnership focuses its efforts on business recruitment, expansion and international trade. VEDP has offices in Virginia, Belgium, Hong Kong, Mexico, Brazil, Korea and Japan.

To learn more about the VALET program, contact Leslie Parpart, VALET Program Manager, at LParpart@YesVirginia.org or visit the programs tab at www.ExportVirginia.org.

VIRGINIA ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP

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