Savannah’s World Trade Center is receiving praise from the CEO of the World Trade Centers Association.
Scott Ferguson spent a couple of days in Savannah this week and was a guest speaker at the Savannah Economic Development Board meeting on Tuesday.
“You should be very proud of the World Trade Center in Savannah,” said Ferguson. “They are incredibly active, with lots of tools, lots of information asks, lots of members traveling. That’s all in evidence here. I see this as best practice and a great chance for me to come here.”
Ferguson’s visit is the first by a CEO of the World Trade Centers Association to Savannah, said Trip Tollison, SEDA president and CEO.
“Having World Trade Centers Association President Scott Ferguson here in Savannah is an honor for World Trade Center Savannah and our partners,” Tollison said. “This is his first visit to Savannah and he has had the opportunity to see our beautiful city and the economic assets our region has to offer internationally. Scott’s visit demonstrates the commitment by WTCA and its leadership to World Trade Centers.”
World Trade Centers provide businesses — small and large — with expertise in doing business internationally. With 321 members in 88 countries and 73 international capitals that have a World Trade Center, there is a global network of knowledge available.
“We know people who know people,” Ferguson said.
Members can receive up-to-date information on government regulations, business culture, marketing conditions and regional data.
That type of know-how can be invaluable in helping to successfully navigate international markets.
“Governments around the world seem to be trying to make things more complicated,” Ferguson said.
Ferguson also praised Savannah’s work regionally.
“In trade promotion services you may not find a better example than Savannah, which is all about collaboration and connecting with partners,” Ferguson said.
Ferguson said one of the greatest strengths of the World Trade Centers is diversity.
“We used to be cookie-cutter, 48 to 50 years ago,” Ferguson said. “All World Trade Centers were the same, but we’ve brought in many members with different business models and we aren’t cookie-cutter anymore.”
Ferguson said diversity has created a “magical space,” with access points into many different ways of viewing and developing business opportunities.
Local honey producer and maker of all-natural and organic products, Savannah Bee Company, is one area company that has benefited from WTCSav’s services.
Savannah Bee Company partnered with WTCSav in working towards an international market. The company won a Best New Product award at its first international trade show in London.
Savannah Bee was able to overcome a hurdle for trade in the European Union thanks to Savannah’s connection to the World Trade Center Marseille Provence in France.
Some of the services available in Savannah include analysis by trade and cultural specialists, establishment of trade partnerships, identify solutions to both import and exports and product research on the state, national and international level.
WTCSav also supports and promotes seminars, workshops and trade missions hosted by its global partners.