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Bucknell University SBDC Holds 2017 Celebration of Small Business

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On Friday, July 21, 2017 the Bucknell University SBDC held is annual Celebration of Small Business on Bucknell's campus in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. During the breakfast, four awards were given to the following exemplary small business owners: InnovateHER Business Challenge Bucknell SBDC Regional Winner: Kaitlin Schuck, Threading Love, Recognizing her efforts and…

Want to Commercialize your Technology? Learn How at the 2017 SBIR Workshop in Villanova

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Are you a small business owner or an entrepreneur in the technology sector looking for opportunities to fund development of an innovative technology? If you want to commercialize your technology, The Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program can help.   As a highly competitive awards-based program, SBIR provides funding for innovators…

"Meet the Lenders" Event For Local Entrepreneurs Slated for October 5 in Philadelphia

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On October 5, 2017, the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Eastern Pennsylvania District will be participating in a lender outreach event hosted by SCORE. Together, they bring “Meet the Lenders” Borrowing Matchmaking, a networking event designed to connect small business owners and entrepreneurs with resource partners and lenders in an engaging…

Seymour International Trade

Coming from a family of small business owners, Robert Seymour was destined to start his own business. An experienced sales professional with twenty years of experience working for Fortune 500 firms in the banking, telecom, real estate, beverages, and apparel industries, Robert observed that some of the companies for which he had been selling domestically were facing increased competition from imports. Armed with that knowledge, Seymour International Trading Group LLC, an export management company, was born.

Robert prepared a business plan, obtained business licenses, incorporated the business, set up a website, obtained a business bank account, and then started knocking on doors. He was successful in obtaining clients but needed additional assistance. Since he had attended international trade workshops held by the Temple University Small Business Development Center (SBDC), he contacted the International Trade Consultant there for assistance. He specifically wanted to know about locating freight forwarders, certifications, client contracts, identifying and accessing potential markets, and how to put all the pieces together to develop a successful enterprise.

Robert’s timing was perfect. He had contacted the SBDC just as it was renewing its relationship with the University’s International Business Department. After having his business plan reviewed, Robert was offered the opportunity to present Seymour International Trading LLC as an IB class project and have the class research an overseas market. This gave the business a template to follow and lists of resources that he could use to build his business. He quickly agreed and requested information on the market for hair care products in China. In addition to a referral to the IB Capstone class, the client was referred to the Temple SBDC Legal Clinic for creation of sales contracts, and the Legal Clinic provided information on sourcing and selecting a freight forwarder and export certifications.

In December 2013, the client received a full export plan including country analysis, marketing plan, shipping and tariff information, and licensing requirements for shipping hair products to China. The company commented that it used the research obtained from the Temple SBDC-IB Capstone Partnership Project to enter the China hair care market and is currently in negotiation with two China distributors for sales.

The company actually started in 2011 but experienced a deep decline in revenue due to its own restructuring and loss of clients who ceased operations. It recorded $10,000 in revenue in 2013, the year it approached the Temple SBDC for consulting services. In 2014, the company recorded $140,000 in revenue and added two part-time jobs. Robert continues to attend workshops on topics related to international trade.