August 11, 2008

Christie Miller
(804) 545-5805
Two Richmond-Area Companies 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 two Richmond-area companies into its two-year Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET) program. The companies are Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc. of Glen Allen and PARI Respiratory Equipment, Inc. of Midlothian. Launched in January 2002, the VALET program assists exporters in the Commonwealth that have firmly established domestic operations and are committed to international exporting as an expansion strategy.

Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc. and PARI Respiratory Equipment, Inc. join the program as part of the 14th 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 100 Virginia companies have been accepted to participate in the VALET program.

As one of the country's leading distributors of small kitchen appliances, Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc. sells more than 35 million appliances every year. The company's most famous brands -- Hamilton Beach, Eclectrics, Proctor Silex and TrueAir -- are found in households across America, Canada and Mexico.

“As a Virginia-based consumer products company, we feel the VALET program will help us set sound market entry strategies and significantly accelerate our export efforts,” said Daniel Escalante, International Business Development Analyst for Hamilton Beach Brands, Inc. “Establishing an overseas business will require a wide range of resources as we develop new products, seek new distribution partners, and learn to sell and market small appliances to a new and different consumer. Hamilton Beach Brands will benefit tremendously from having access to the VEDP programs and overseas offices, VALET program partners, and other VALET participants. Through the Global Market Research program, we have already seen the value VEDP can add when creating business development strategies. We have found great value in the projects we have completed using VEDP’s contacts in South America. We look forward to obtaining more in-depth intelligence to make sound decisions on product proposals and identify suitable distribution partners. Further, as we expand our relationship with VEDP, we are confident that the program will play a key role in helping Hamilton Beach Brands become a leading supplier for global retailers.”

PARI Respiratory Equipment, Inc. is a leading worldwide developer and manufacturer of fast and efficient aerosol delivery systems for patients with asthma, chronic lung disease, and cystic fibrosis. PARI’s worldwide vision is to improve the lives of those affected by respiratory diseases and those who care for them. Maker of the world’s leading breath-enhanced reusable nebulizer, the PARI LC PLUS, and the new PARI LC Sprint nebulizer line, PARI also manufactures the award-winning PARI TREK S compact compressor, Bubbles the Fish II aerosol mask, and durable PARI PRONEB Ultra II. PARI’s Vortex anti-static valved holding chamber improves the aerosol deposition of metered dose inhalers (MDI’s). PARI’s North American headquarters are in Midlothian, Virginia, with worldwide headquarters in Starnberg, Germany.

“Building on the success that we achieved by participating in the VEDP’s AIM program and trade missions, participating in the VALET program represents a natural progression in our strategy to expand our exports to Latin America,” said Eloy J. Fernandez, Business Manager, Latin America, for PARI Respiratory Equipment, Inc.“We trust that with the VALET program’s financial support, expert guidance and network of accomplished international business professionals, PARI will be able to increase and expedite our demand generation capability and thus our export sales to Latin America”.

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 these impressive new companies into the program,” said Leslie Parpart, VALET Program Manager. “We look forward to working with their international teams over the course of the next two years to assist them in exceeding export goals.”

The Virginia Economic Development Partnership's Division of International Trade earned the coveted President's "E Star" Award for Export Service. The President's "E Star" Award was created in 1969 to recognize continued superior performance in increasing or promoting exports. Only previous recipients of the "E" Award are eligible, and the period of consideration covers the most recent three years of export operation. During the 2005-2007 period of consideration, VEDP's International Trade Division assisted more than 100 Virginia companies through its export development programs, Accessing International Markets (AIM) and Virginia Leaders in Export Trade (VALET).

NASBITE International, a multi-national professional trade organization, awarded its 2007 Program Excellence Award to the VEDP Division of International Trade’s VALET program. The Program Excellence Award is given to recognize innovation and originality in international trade education, counseling, training and research. The VALET program stood out because of its successful pairing of resources, state funding and private-sector support to promote and expand international sales for Virginia companies.

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 or visit the programs tab at


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