February 04, 2009

Suzanne West
(804) 545-5806
Portsmouth 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 Portsmouth company, DACS, Inc., 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.

DACS joins the program as part of the 15th 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.

DACS, Inc. is a manufacturer of corrugated steel decking products and accessories for the construction and material handling industries. Privately held and founded in 1987, it operates two plants located in Portsmouth, Virginia and Sparrows Point, Maryland. Orders are shipped locally, nationally and internationally through one of several eastern seaboard container ports. The company prides itself in offering affordable products and quality engineering services. Growth has been continuous, fueled by loyal customers, innovative designs, and expanding markets.

“DACS is pleased to be accepted into this year’s class of the VALET program,” said Jack Henning, President. “Although we have had some international sales success, we know that there are many more opportunities awaiting us. Our products have been tested and proven. We have facilities proximate to shipping ports. It is just a matter of developing procedures and techniques to find locate and secure more orders. In today’s challenging business environment, we are hoping the resources and contacts made available through the VALET program will offer us cost effective ideas and solutions.”

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 DACS 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 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 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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