Service Export Network Connects Virginia Companies to the World
-Network provides global visibility for Virginia service exporters-
RICHMOND - Virginia service companies now have access to a free online outlet to promote their services to overseas clients. Called Virginia’s Service Export Network, the Web site (www.exportvirginia.org/Virginias-Service-Export-Network/) was created to link Virginia sellers to buyers, regardless of where the buyer may be located.
The Web site, created by the Virginia International Trade Alliance (VITAL), provides a searchable database of companies, highlights registered companies and posts news and events related to international business.
“Information technology, telecommunications, security, engineering and environmental consulting are among Virginia’s strong service sectors,” said Paul Grossman, Director of the Virginia Economic Development Partnership’s International Division. “These services are in high demand in countries around the world. Virginia’s Service Export Network provides companies with an easy, cost-effective way to promote themselves in the global marketplace.”
In 2005, service industries in Virginia employed about 2.5 million people, or about 82 percent of Virginia’s workforce. According to the U.S. Coalition of Service Industries, Virginia’s service exports in 2005 were valued at about $11.9 billion, a 11.6 percent increase over 2004, representing the increasing importance of services to Virginia’s economy.
VITAL recognized the importance of service exports and created a task force to identify needs and opportunities for this large, growing segment of Virginia’s exports. Virginia’s Service Export Network was developed by the task force in response to its initial goals to make Virginia the top state in exporting services, implement channels for supporting service export growth, and assist Virginia companies to acquire the skills to sell internationally.
VITAL was launched in June 2007 in response to Governor Kaine’s economic development strategic plan that calls for a coordinated international marketing effort to increase Virginia’s exports by 7 percent by 2010, and increase foreign direct investment in the Commonwealth to 3,000 jobs and $300 million per year. As a non-profit, public-private entity, VITAL provides a platform for Virginia’s businesses—large and small—to network and reach expanded opportunities internationally. It currently has more than 69 member companies statewide.