Skip to main content

Upcoming Events

Empowering Women Entrepreneurs Featuring First Women’s Bank
Tuesday, June 20 l 3:00PM – 6:00PM

Organized by the Illinois District Export Council and the EXIM Bank, featuring Marianne Markowitz, President and CEO of the First Women’s Bank, this event focuses on some of the issues facing women entrepreneurs.

Main issue facing women entrepreneurs

  • Financing options for Women owned businesses
  • Critical role community banks provide
  • How a mission-driven bank is different than other banks
  • Discussion of Women entrepreneurs who have utilized Federal & State resources
  • Networking

The event is being hosted by Duval Distillery at the KOVAL Tasting Room 4241 North Ravenswood Avenue Chicago, IL 60613. There is a fee of $50 and registration is required. You can register here.

Thursday, June 22, 2023 | 10-10:30 a.m.

Attend an information session to learn about how your company can start selling its exportable products and services internationally. We will discuss why exporting is a sustainable opportunity to increase revenue and is an organic business strategy. We’ll discuss benefits of and myths about exporting, export readiness, mitigating risks, and new-to-exporting requirements and procedures. The Illinois SBDC International Trade Center provides customized export solutions supporting small businesses to successfully enter and thrive in a global market.

The event is free of charge, but registration is required. Register here.

Session Three: How to Enter Foreign Markets and Partner Selection
Thursday, June 29 | 12:00PM – 1:00PM

Once a company has selected a foreign market for export expansion, the next two decisions are which entry mode to use, and who are potential partners. This session details the entry mode options, from indirect exporting, to direct exporting and foreign direct investment (FDI). The challenge is how to balance the risk versus the rewards of these options. We will discuss how even a small amount of FDI can be highly effective in gaining strong control over the market and enhanced customer feedback. Once the entry mode has been selected, companies need to find potential partners.  The session details the best methods to find overseas partners, both with and without travel. The session ends with how to make partner selection decisions and which factors should be considered. We will also discuss how state and federal programs can make the process of finding great partners easier and faster than on your own.

The event is free of charge, but registration is required. Register

Session Four: Leveraging Resources for Export Success
Wednesday, July 19 | 12:00PM – 1:00PM

Though the landscape of international trade is constantly changing, one change has been particularly impactful: Companies increasingly have access to better and more current international trade data to make smarter decisions. This session will review those resources, nearly all of which are available at no cost. We will also highlight why you must understand the global Harmonized Code System used by countries to report their imports and exports. This session will be valuable to new and existing exporters that may not be aware of these recent available of great trade data. We will also discuss the Illinois STEP grant program which provide reimbursement for allowable international marketing expenses.

The event is free of charge, but registration is required. Register

Session Five: Putting It All Together
Wednesday, August 2 | 12:00PM – 1:00PM

This this last session, we discuss how to incorporate all the topics from the prior workshops to develop an export plan. Companies often skip this final step, which is a mistake. We will review why even a basic export plan will ensure critical steps are not missed. We will discuss the SBA Export Business Planner – an easy to use guide to facilitate the creation of an export plan. By the end of this session, you will know the next steps you need to take to really impact your export success.

The event is free of charge, but registration is required. | Register