I-69 Thumb Region honors local exporters from seven counties

GENESEE COUNTY – CFI Medical, based in Fenton, with a warehouse and distribution center in Flint Township, was among six businesses recognized last week with an Exporter of the Year award, presented during the 2014 I-69 Thumb Regional Summit, according to a press release from the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce.

The I-69 Thumb Region includes Genesee, Lapeer, Huron, Sanilac, St. Clair, Shiawassee and Tuscola counties.

The Exporter of the Year is the product of a partnership between the I-69 Thumb Region, U.S. Department of Commerce, Michigan Economic Development Corporation and the University of Michigan-Flint.

More than 170 business, civic and education leaders were on hand as six awards were presented by Richard Corson, Director, East Michigan U.S. Export Assistance Center at U.S. Department of Commerce along with economic development partners from each of the seven counties.

Exporting is a significant component of economic growth, according to Janice Karcher, Vice President for Economic Development for the Flint & Genesee Chamber of Commerce.

“Exporting provides an opportunity for businesses to diversify and grow,” said Karcher. “The I-69 Thumb Region partners are working to connect businesses in the region to export opportunities and support. The businesses honored here today have taken advantage of the growth opportunities that exporting can provide in a significant way. That’s the goal of the award to encourage exploration of exporting as a path toward diversification and growth.”

Dr. Yener Kandogan, Associate Dean and Professor of International Business at the School of Management at the University of Michigan-Flint participated in the selection process for the Exporter of the Year honors. He said it is encouraging to see the number of businesses in the region who have chosen to explore exporting opportunities.

“Reaching beyond the U.S. market successfully can be challenging and rewarding,” said Kandogan. “Today’s business environment is ripe for exploration into global markets. Each of the businesses that were nominated and selected should be commended for acting locally and thinking globally. That truly is the future for business.”

Exporter of the Year awards also were presented to Sebewaing Tool & Engineering, representing Huron & Sanilac Counties; Mi-Tech Tooling, Inc. of Tuscola County, Motion Machine Company, Lapeer County; Williamston Products, Inc.; Shiawassee County and BioPro, Inc.; St. Clair County. Rhonda Sanders

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