IACCGH Small Business Series Focus on Exports

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Article By Somdatta Basu

IACCGH Small Business Series Empowers Entrepreneurs to Seize Export Opportunities

The Indo-American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Houston (IACCGH) recently convened a pivotal event as part of its Small Business Series, shedding light on the immense potential of exporting opportunities. Held at the Wallis Bank, the gathering attracted a diverse assembly of business leaders, entrepreneurs, and experts eager to delve into the realm of international trade.

“At IACCGH, we are proud to serve the business community for over 20 years, working closely with our partner organizations to promote events like today’s,” remarked Jagdip Ahluwalia, executive director of the IACCGH, expressing gratitude to event sponsors and supporters.

President Rajiv Bhavsar, along with Executive Director Jagdip Ahluwalia, set a vibrant tone for the occasion, emphasizing the event’s significance in fostering insights and valuable networking opportunities. “We appreciate the presence of all participants today, as together, we explore the vast potential of international trade,” Bhavsar remarked. Speaking on export financing, Nasirullah Khan, EVP Chief Lending Officer of Wallis Bank, highlighted the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) program for export working capital lines. Khan elucidated on the program’s offerings, stating, “SBA has a program for export working capital lines, offering financing with up to 90% bank guarantee coverage, capped at $5 million.” Jason Wilson, Director of the US Commercial Service Office in Houston, took center stage to illuminate Houston’s pivotal role as a leading export market. Wilson delineated the services offered by the US Commercial Service, emphasizing their mission to bolster US exports and attract foreign investment. “Let’s underscore the critical importance of the US-India relationship, a cornerstone of global commerce,” Wilson emphasized, articulating shared objectives aimed at strengthening supply chain resilience and advancing innovative technology ecosystems.

Lisa Philip, President and Founder of Hybass International LLC and Operator Houston MBDA Export Center, shared her extensive journey in international trade, offering invaluable insights into the challenges and triumphs of exporting. Philip’s narrative underscored the transformative power of innovation and resilience in navigating the global marketplace. “I wanted to ship something that I manufactured,” Philip explained, highlighting her determination to innovate and create something uniquely her own. Ahluwalia further enriched the discussion with practical advice on navigating cultural nuances and mitigating risks in overseas ventures. “It takes time understanding how to do business,” Ahluwalia shared, emphasizing the importance of informed decision-making in international endeavors. Throughout the event, discussions delved into pragmatic strategies for market expansion, risk management, and financial facilitation in international trade transactions. Representatives from Wallace Bank elucidated their commitment to supporting small businesses in navigating global commerce, reinforcing the pivotal role of financial institutions in facilitating export financing and enhancing exporters’ competitiveness.

As the IACCGH Small Business Series concluded, participants departed with a wealth of knowledge and renewed inspiration to embark on their export journeys. The IACCGH Small Business Series continues to strive towards empowering entrepreneurs and fostering economic growth through international trade, reaffirming Houston’s status as a global business hub poised for transformative opportunities.