WTCSD’s Q3 Global Brief: International travel returns, San Diego’s newest exporters, and more

Each month, World Trade Center San Diego delivers the latest global news and updates straight to your inbox, sponsored by Lufthansa Group.

In Q3 2022, here’s what you need to know about San Diego’s global trade, investment, and engagement. ➝ Get WTCSD’s Global Brief each quarter.

MetroConnect VI: Meet the cohort

In February, WTCSD announced the sixth cohort of its MetroConnect program, helping 15 small and medium-sized businesses expand international operations and export pipelines. This year’s cohort spans key regional innovation industries, including techlife sciences, and consumer goods, highlighting San Diego’s continued global growth and diverse innovation economy.

➝ Meet the Companies

Spotlight: Lufthansa Group keeps San Diego going global

A long-time partner, Lufthansa Group continues to work collaboratively with WTCSD and the San Diego Regional Airport Authority to offer a trusted gateway from the San Diego region into Western Europe. Lufthansa’s new nonstop flight to Munich, among other efforts, is helping San Diego return to international travel and expand global connectivity—including WTCSD’s upcoming trade mission to the Netherlands.

➝ Read More

Real Dog Box launches local shopping partnership program

Meet Real Dog Box, a San Diego startup and MetroConnect VI company dedicated to creating single-ingredient treats that enhance dogs’ lives and health. Via nine local partnerships, Real Dog Box’s new Pawsport program helps San Diegans support dog-friendly businesses and win big.

➝ Read More

San Diego News

Events

Grow your company in san diego↓

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies—free of charge—to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego.

  • Export Specialty Center: For small companies interested in learning about exporting and international growth.
  • MetroConnect: For small and medium-sized companies ready to export and grow internationally.

Plus: Get WTCSD’s Global Brief, monthly global news and updates delivered straight to your inbox.


You might also like:

For COVID-19 recovery resources and information: Visit this page, or see how we can help your company free of charge.

MetroConnect VI: Meet the Consumer Goods companies

This February alongside San Diego Councilmember Raul Campillo and program underwriters JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Procopio, World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD) welcomed the sixth cohort of San Diego companies to its MetroConnect export accelerator.

Since the program’s debut in 2015, the 80 small- and medium-sized (SMEs) companies in MetroConnect have collectively added 269 new regional jobs, signed more than 543 new contracts, and set up 22 new overseas facilities. On average, cohort companies grow their exports by an average 63 percent and revenues by 40 percent as part of the program. Notable alumni include Blue Sky Network, Aira (acquired by Blue Diego Investment Group), Scientist.com, Modern Times, Dr. Bronner’s, Cypher Genomics (acquired by Human Longevity Inc.), Planck Aerosystems, Bitchin’ Sauce, White Labs, and dozens more.

Now, WTCSD is pleased to welcome the newest group of MetroConnect companies representing the diversity of San Diego’s innovation economy. Below, meet the Consumer Goods companies:

Access Trax

  • Location: La Mesa, CA
  • About: Access Trax is a women-owned social impact business on a mission to make the outdoors accessible for all. The company empowers people of all physical abilities to easily access outdoor terrain such as sand at the beach with their ADA compliant portable access mats.
  • Hopes for program: Create strategic export plan, glean insight on export logistics, identify international buyers

Critter Technology

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • About: Critter Technology specializes in the development, manufacture, and commercialization of specialized coatings with unique functionality. Its marquee product AntCant is an easy to apply coating that produces a surface that ants and potentially other insects cannot adhere to and gain traction.
  • Hopes for program: Navigate international liability insurance, understand tax law in foreign markets and how to export goods classified as hazardous materials

Golden Coast Mead

  • Location: Oceanside, CA
  • About: As the first meadery in Southern California, the company leads the reawakening of Fermented Honey Libations. Golden Coast Mead has helped launch over 20 different meaderies, including ones in Africa and Jamaica, to aid in remote communities’ ability to create jobs and economies.
  • Hopes for program: Find effective channel partners

Real Dog Box

  • Location: National City, CA
  • About: Real Dog Box complements any diet and any budget and teaches pet owners how to incorporate fresh food into their dog’s lifestyle. A few dollars a day spent on real food can prevent six out of the 10 most common dog vet visits – that’s why the company makes and delivers a monthly box of fresh dog treats and chews to prevent food-related illnesses.
  • Hopes for program: Form relationships with partners in target markets

Shop My Porch

  • Location: Poway, CA
  • About: Shop My Porch is a social shopping platform – including a mobile app, website, and series of social media groups – that matches home-based artisans with people looking for home crafted goods on a hyperlocal basis. The Shop My Porch platform not only allows makers to post goods for pickup, home delivery, or shipping but also allows shoppers to request custom products.
  • Hopes for program: Understand tax law in foreign markets, language translation, develop an action for target markets

Target markets for the MetroConnect VI cohort

The map below outlines countries that the sixth cohort is pursuing through their export strategy.

Next up for MetroConnect VI

The cohort will gain access to a suite of resources to support expansion into international markets, including executive workshops, flight discounts, language translation, and up to $30,000 in grant funding.

“Programs like MetroConnect help ensure the world knows just what San Diego is made of—innovative, high-impact products and services across a wide range of industries,” said San Diego City Councilmember Raul Campillo. “I’m proud to support and welcome WTCSD’s new cohort, and look forward to seeing the companies’ impact on a global scale.”

Interested in growing your business internationally?

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies – free of charge – to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego. Whether your small company is interested in learning about exporting and international growth, or your SME is ready to export and grow internationally, WTCSD is here to help.

Ready to get involved? Click here to receive our quarterly Global Brief Newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox.

 

MetroConnect VI: Meet the Tech companies

This February alongside San Diego Councilmember Raul Campillo and program underwriters JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Procopio, World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD) welcomed the sixth cohort of San Diego companies to its MetroConnect export accelerator.

Since the program’s debut in 2015, the 80 small- and medium-sized (SMEs) companies in MetroConnect have collectively added 269 new regional jobs, signed more than 543 new contracts, and set up 22 new overseas facilities. On average, cohort companies grow their exports by an average 63 percent and revenues by 40 percent as part of the program. Notable alumni include Blue Sky Network, Aira (acquired by Blue Diego Investment Group), Scientist.com, Modern Times, Dr. Bronner’s, Cypher Genomics (acquired by Human Longevity Inc.), Planck Aerosystems, Bitchin’ Sauce, White Labs, and dozens more.

Now, WTCSD is pleased to welcome the newest group of MetroConnect companies representing the diversity of San Diego’s innovation economy. Below, meet the Tech companies:

Benchmark Labs

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • About: Benchmark Labs is a Techstars-backed agricultural and IoT technology company that uses IoT sensors to assist farmers in implementing more sustainable practices and help them save natural resources by using in-situ environmental forecasts.
  • Hopes for program: Target market research, e-commerce strategy

GigaIO

  • Location: Carlsbad, CA
  • About: GigaIO democratizes Artificial Intelligence and High-Performance Computing architectures by delivering the elasticity of the cloud at a fraction of the price.
  • Hopes for program: Identify distribution partners in target markets, create strategic export plan

Primo Energy

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • About: Primo Energy was founded in 2013 to design and build hybrid distributed energy platforms using wind, solar, and battery storage. Distributed power can provide energy for remote locations, island territories, disaster relief, and back up power, and urban areas that have no power available. The company has installations across the globe, from the Bahamas to the Arctic and from California to Spain.
  • Hopes for program: Identify distribution partners in target markets, create strategic export plan

The Good Face

  • Location: La Jolla, CA
  • About: The Good Face enables companies to formulate, create, launch, and grow demand for transparent, compliant, and competitive products. Its platform features the fastest growing formulation and regulatory compliance SaaS solution, Good Face Formulator, which is used in R&D and catalog management by brands, manufacturers, and retailers in personal care and cosmetics. The Good Face Formulator has been adopted globally (France, Switzerland, UK, Canada, USA, Brazil, Philippines, S. Korea, Japan, China, Australia) and its customers include industry leaders such as L’Oreal, Target (Private Label), Grove Collaborative, JC Penney, and KDC-One.
  • Hopes for program: Determine target markets, identify effective channel partners

Trabus Technologies

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • About: Trabus is a minority-owned, service-disabled veteran-owned small business (SDVOSB) with portfolios including Wireless Technologies, AI & Data Science, Cybersecurity, Maritime Transportation, and Environmental Informatics.
  • Hopes for program: Identify effective channel partners, adapt products for international markets

 

 

Next up for MetroConnect VI

The cohort will gain access to a suite of resources to support expansion into international markets, including executive workshops, flight discounts, language translation, and up to $30,000 in grant funding.

“Programs like MetroConnect help ensure the world knows just what San Diego is made of—innovative, high-impact products and services across a wide range of industries,” said San Diego City Councilmember Raul Campillo. “I’m proud to support and welcome WTCSD’s new cohort, and look forward to seeing the companies’ impact on a global scale.”

Interested in growing your business internationally?

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies – free of charge – to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego. Whether your small company is interested in learning about exporting and international growth, or your SME is ready to export and grow internationally, WTCSD is here to help.

Ready to get involved? Click here to receive our quarterly Global Brief Newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox.

 

MetroConnect VI: Meet the Life Sciences companies

World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD)’s MetroConnect awards companies with matching funds, connects them with relevant export-oriented partners and resources, and arranges specialized workshops to increase their knowledge and awareness of global export trends and regulations.

Since the program’s debut in 2015, the 80 small- and medium-sized MetroConnect companies have collectively added 269 new regional jobs, signed more than 543 new contracts, and set up 22 new overseas facilities. Notable alumni include Scientist.com, Dr. Bronner’s, Cypher Genomics (acquired by Human Longevity Inc.), Planck Aerosystems, White Labs, and more.

Now, WTCSD is pleased to welcome the newest group of MetroConnect companies representing the diversity of San Diego’s innovation economy. Below, meet the Life Sciences companies:

Meet the four Life Sciences companies going global with MetroConnect:

 Nano PharmaSolutions

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • Description: Nano PharmaSolutions’ NanoTransformer™ technology turns insoluble drug molecules to nanoparticles so they can be more effectively absorbed.
  • Key bottlenecks: Building out international marketing plan, outreach to identify prospects

Sparsha Pharma USA

  • Location: Oceanside, CA
  • Description: Sparsha Pharma, a pharmaceutical manufacturing company, creates transdermal drug delivery system and orally dissolved film products.
  • Key bottlenecks: Understanding regulatory landscape in target markets. Identify partners and distributors

 iAssay

  • Location: San Diego, CA
  • Description: iAssay®’s Point-of-Care Test (POCT) diagnostics solution tests patients wherever they are. Multi-tech/format POCT cartridges commercialized by hundreds of companies are used with iAssay® designed adaptors. Its AWS Cloud validates devices before testing can start, captures raw data, and offers time/date stamped results available through internet portals.
  • Key bottlenecks: Building out international marketing plan, outreach to identify prospects

Solecta

  • Location: Oceanside, CA
  • Description: As manufacturers deal with variable raw material quality, rising costs for energy, and increased quality standards for their finished products, Solecta helps improve separations processes through membrane solutions like microfiltration, ultrafiltration, nanofiltration, and reverse osmosis filtration products.
  • Key bottlenecks: Effective outreach to potential clients, targeted market research, local language barriers, understanding of local regulatory requirements

 

 

What’s next?

The 15 MetroConnect VI companies will gain access to a suite of resources to support expansion into international markets, including executive workshops, flight discounts, language translation, and up to $30,000 in grant funding.

“Programs like MetroConnect help ensure the world knows just what San Diego is made of—innovative, high-impact products and services across a wide range of industries,” said San Diego City Councilmember Raul Campillo. “I’m proud to support and welcome WTCSD’s new cohort, and look forward to seeing the companies’ impact on a global scale.”

Interested in growing your business internationally?

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies – free of charge – to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego. Whether your small company is interested in learning about exporting and international growth, or your SME is ready to export and grow internationally, WTCSD is here to help.

Ready to get involved? Click here to receive our quarterly Global Brief Newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox.

 

WTCSD’s Q2 Global Brief: Ukraine impacts, Tijuana talent, and more

Each month, World Trade Center San Diego delivers the latest global news and updates straight to your inbox. ➝ Get WTCSD’s Global Brief each quarter.

In Q2 2022, here’s what you need to know about San Diego’s global trade, investment, and engagement:

The crisis in Ukraine and its impact on San Diego businesses 

The conflict in Ukraine has major implications for Russia’s relationship with Western nations and the global economy—and has already led to significant changes in the regulation of trade. The WTCSD team sat down with San Diego trade attorney Bob Bowen and law firm Procopio to learn how San Diego companies—particularly in energy, defense, and dual-use technologies—can prepare for these changes.

➝ Read More

SIDUS Solutions strengthens brand in Europe, Asia with MetroConnect

San Diego’s SIDUS Solutions, which generated 15 percent of revenue from exports but faced canceled trade shows due to COVID-19, needed to find new ways to connect with its international customers and retain revenue. Leveraging MetroConnect’s expert workshops, translation tools, and $5,000 grant, SIDUS strengthened its digital presence to expand brand awareness and build relationships in target overseas markets.

➝ Read More

How Tijuana can address San Diego’s battle for talent

When your San Diego business needs to find qualified digital talent in a competitive market, consider staying regional and look to Tijuana. Just 20 minutes south of San Diego and in the same time zone, firms like Thermo Fisher Scientific are already leveraging the benefits of a binational team, including visa flexibility, easy sample transport, and proximity for culture-building and quality assurance.

➝ Read More

San Diego News

Events

Grow your company in san diego↓

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies—free of charge—to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego.

  • Export Specialty Center: For small companies interested in learning about exporting and international growth.
  • MetroConnect: For small and medium-sized companies ready to export and grow internationally.

Plus: Get WTCSD’s Global Brief, monthly global news and updates delivered straight to your inbox.


You might also like:

For COVID-19 recovery resources and information: Visit this page, or see how we can help your company free of charge.

WTCSD’s Q1 Global Brief: MetroConnect VI, export success, and more

Each month, World Trade Center San Diego delivers the latest global news and updates straight to your inbox. ➝ Get WTCSD’s Global Brief each quarter.

In Q1 2022, here’s what you need to know about San Diego’s global trade, investment, and engagement:

WTCSD’s MetroConnect to help 15 new SMEs go global

WTCSD welcomed the sixth cohort of companies named to its MetroConnect export accelerator, made possible by JPMorgan Chase & Co., Procopio, and more than a dozen additional sponsors. These 15 small and mid-sized companies represent a diverse cross-section of San Diego’s economy, from a Bay Area tech transplant to a hard kombucha brewer to an environmental science firm and many more. In its first five years, MetroConnect has helped San Diego firms grow exports by an average 63 percent.

➝ Read More

Blue Sky Network turns $5K grant into 36% export increase

Satellite-based communications and fleet management company Blue Sky Network encountered COVID-19-related supply chain issues and a substantial drop in revenue from aviation and oil and gas customers. Upon joining MetroConnect, it leveraged the program’s $5,000 grant, translation software, and market intelligence resources to generate a 36 percent increase in exports. Plus, as a top performing company, Blue Sky Network pitched—and won—MetroConnect’s Grand Prize Pitchfest, netting an additional $25,000 grant to support continued expansion into Brazil and other key markets.

➝ Read More

White Labs reduces Australian customs holds by 84% with MetroConnect

A yeast and fermentation innovator, San Diego-based White Labs needed support navigating customs and logistics regulations for exporting live cultures to target countries such as Australia, where it continued to encounter product returns. Equipped with expert knowledge from MetroConnect workshops, new partners, and access to critical tools, White Labs tackled its biggest logistics challenge—decreasing its annual customs holds in Australia by 84 percent since the start of the program.

➝ Read More

San Diego News

Events

Grow your company in san diego↓

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies—free of charge—to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego.

  • Export Specialty Center: For small companies interested in learning about exporting and international growth.
  • MetroConnect: For small and medium-sized companies ready to export and grow internationally.

Plus: Get WTCSD’s Global Brief, monthly global news and updates delivered straight to your inbox.


You might also like:

For COVID-19 recovery resources and information: Visit this page, or see how we can help your company free of charge.

Meet the MetroConnect VI companies!

Add these to your ‘companies to watch’ list…

Together with San Diego Councilmember Raul Campillo and program underwriters JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Procopio, World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD) welcomed its sixth cohort of San Diego companies in its MetroConnect export accelerator.

Since the program’s debut in 2015, the 80 small- and medium-sized (SMEs) companies in MetroConnect have collectively added 269 new regional jobs, signed more than 543 new contracts, and set up 22 new overseas facilities. On average, cohort companies grow their exports by an average 63 percent and revenues by 40 percent as part of the program. Notable alums include Blue Sky Network, Aira (acquired by Blue Diego Investment Group), Scientist.com, Modern Times, Dr. Bronner’s, Cypher Genomics (acquired by Human Longevity Inc.), Planck Aerosystems, Bitchin’ Sauce, and dozens more.

Now, WTCSD is pleased to welcome the newest set of MetroConnect companies representing the diversity of San Diego’s innovation economy.

Meet the MetroConnect VI companies

  1. Access Trax
  2. Benchmark Labs
  3. Critter Technology
  4. GigaIO
  5. Golden Coast Mead
  6. iAssay
  7. Nano PharmaSolutions
  8. Novo Brazil Brewing
  9. Primo Energy
  10. Real Dog Box
  11. Shop My Porch
  12. Solecta
  13. Sparsha Pharma USA
  14. The Good Face
  15. Trabus Technologies

Learn more about the companies here

In a competitive application process, MetroConnect judges from Biocom, Connect, CMTC, U.S. Commercial Service, Procopio, and Mitsubishi Electric selected the sixth cohort based on interest in new markets, interest in targeted metro markets, assessed impact of funds, current international traction, and more.

“I’m proud to support and welcome WTCSD’s new cohort, and look forward to seeing the companies’ impact on a global scale,” said San Diego City Councilmember Raul Campillo. “Programs like MetroConnect help ensure the world knows just what San Diego is made of—innovative, high-impact products and services across a wide range of industries.”

Why go global?

Against the backdrop of pandemic-driven supply chain disruption and small business closures, it is more important than ever to support SMEs in building resilience by going global.

In 2021 alone, San Diego exported more than $22 billion in goods overseas, as well as billions more in services like software, cybersecurity, engineering, and research. SMEs produce 92 percent of those goods—driving home the importance of programs like MetroConnect.

“As the San Diego economy continues to recover from the pandemic, we are optimistic about the future. We’re seeing the return of international flights to key markets; firms settled into their remote and tech-centered environments; and strong job growth across sectors,” said Nikia Clarke, executive director of WTCSD. “Thanks to JPMorgan Chase and Procopio, the MetroConnect program will continue to build on this momentum and help ensure San Diego’s small and mid-sized businesses have the tools needed to weather future economic downturns, grow quality jobs, and share San Diego’s life-changing innovation with the world.”

Next up for MetroConnect VI

The cohort will gain access to a suite of resources to support expansion into international markets, including executive workshops, flight discounts, language translation, and up to $30,000 in grant funding.

“Since its launch, the City of San Diego has been a proud supporter of MetroConnect and the nearly 100 businesses it has helped grow internationally,” said San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria. “As Mayor, I’m committed to supporting San Diego’s small businesses on our road to recovery; and international connectivity is an important tool in building economic resilience.”

Interested in growing your business internationally?

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies – free of charge – to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego. Whether your small company is interested in learning about exporting and international growth, or your SME is ready to export and grow internationally, WTCSD is here to help.

Ready to get involved? Click here to receive our monthly Global Brief Newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox.

2021: World Trade Center San Diego supports 50 businesses as region works toward recovery

15

companies supported

850

jobs supported

$10 M

net export increase, 2021

World Trade Center San Diego (WTCSD), an affiliate of San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation (EDC), cultivates a pipeline of export-ready firms, maximizes foreign direct investment (FDI) opportunities, and enhances San Diego’s global identity. A globally-connected economy creates quality jobs and makes the San Diego region more prosperous, competitive, and resilient – especially crucial amid COVID-19 and its aftershocks.

As we look toward 2022, here are four key ways WTCSD helped make San Diego a more globally competitive, resilient region:

1. MetroConnect V helps companies go global, awards fifth winner

2021 was an exciting year for WTCSD’s MetroConnect export accelerator program as the fifth cohort of incredible small to mid-sized San Diego companies wrapped up participation in the program.

These companies received $5,000 grants to bolster their export initiatives and international expansion efforts. Amid a pandemic, companies needed more digital support services than ever to help navigate growing e-commerce needs during the pandemic. To support, WTCSD held a Digital Trade Series, which assessed each client’s needs and arranged one-on-one counseling sessions with contracted e-commerce experts.

Over the course of the program, one company stood out – with MetroConnect’s support, satellite-based communications and fleet management company Blue Sky Network generated a 36 percent increase in monthly recurring revenue in Brazil, as well as its largest order to date. To support this growth, the company hired seven new full-time employees. Ultimately, WTCSD crowned Blue Sky Network MetroConnect V’s winner and awarded it a $25,000 grant toward its international expansion goals.

Over the past five years of MetroConnect, 80 companies collectively leveraged $890,000 in export grants, resulting in a $95 million net increase in exports from the San Diego region.

2. WTCSD debuts a regional trade and investment strategy for 2025

In 2015, San Diego Regional EDC’s release of “Go Global: San Diego’s Trade and Investment Initiative,” launched the World Trade Center in San Diego, bringing regional companies and stakeholders together with a global vision. Throughout 2020 and early 2021, WTC engaged many of the same partners, and new ones, in an effort to gauge how the region measured up to it, more than five years later. This 2021 update analyzed the state of exports, foreign investment and VC, as well as the extraordinary impact of COVID. Through rigorous data analysis dozens of interviews with public and private-sector leaders, WTC synthesized a set of five key priorities the region should focus on over the next five years. Find out what they are here. Key findings include:

  • 2020 saw $3 billion in foreign investment into San Diego
  • 73 percent of investment into San Diego is in Life Sciences
  • San Diego exports $22 billion in goods each year
  • San Diego is a top 10 services exporter among U.S. metros

Heading into 2022, we expect to see FDI investment portfolios return to the same levels seen in 2019.

3. Export Small Business Development Center (SBDC) supports export and COVID-relief projects

Beyond MetroConnect, the Small Business Development Center (SBDC) at WTCSD provided 35 export-ready small companies with the support needed to navigate international goals, including exports, manufacturing support, and more.

In addition to expansion support, the Export Specialty Center continued to offer COVID-19 recovery resources at no cost, helping San Diego companies like Funki Adventures apply to Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL), Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) 2nd Draw, Shuttered Venue Operators Grant, and City and County small business grants.

Finally, the Global Readiness Program saw a partnership between WTCSD and the University of San Diego help local small to mid-sized businesses secure STEP grants to grow the regional export pipeline.

4. WTCSD serves as a key source of market intelligence

WTCSD conducted a series of business surveys to better inform decision making of regional partners and affiliates. These included:

Corporate Travel Survey:

  • Survey of 12 large businesses and two non-profits in the region to better understand travel and budgets forecasts for the year ahead. This information was critical for the retention of existing service out of SAN and for the attraction of future direct flights. It found:
    • 79 percent of respondents are willing to pay a premium to fly on a San Diego nonstop route versus flying out from Tijuana or Los Angeles
    • 56 percent of respondents expressed a desire for nonstop service to Mexico City and Sao Paulo

EDC Changing Business Landscape Survey:

  • Survey of more than 100 business in the San Diego region, aimed at informing long-term development priorities, across business areas. It found:
    • 14 percent of respondents currently import and/or export out of the Port of San Diego
    • 24 percent of those surveyed would be interested in using the Port of San Diego if they provided service to the types of goods they ship

READ THE FULL REPORT

Interested in growing your business internationally?

World Trade Center San Diego works directly with companies – free of charge – to help them expand internationally and grow in San Diego. Whether your small company is interested in learning about exporting and international growth, or your small or medium-sized company is ready to export and grow internationally, World Trade Center San Diego is here to help.

Ready to export? Apply to MetroConnect VI by December 17.

Want to know more about WTCSD? Click here to receive our monthly Global Brief Newsletter, delivered straight to your inbox.

A note from Mark…

A step toward recovery…

On October 13, British Airways (BA) will resume its nonstop service between San Diego and London Heathrow. The flight that took our region’s global economic connectivity to a whole new level is finally back.

Ten years ago, the BA flight set off a new focus within our region on the role that direct, nonstop service to international markets could play in growing our economy through foreign direct investment and global trade. It was the catalyst for our Japan Airlines flight to Tokyo, our Lufthansa flight to Frankfurt, and continued strategies to expand our global reach and connectivity.

The flight also played a key role in the rebuilding of our region’s World Trade Center (WTC). We learned quickly that trade-related jobs were the kind of quality jobs we were hoping to create for more San Diegans, and that engagement with international markets could have a significant and positive impact on our region’s diverse small business community.

Now operated through EDC, the WTC partnership between the City of San Diego, the San Diego Airport, and the Port of San Diego was at its strongest just when the global pandemic shut down international travel (and life as we knew it). But while tourism and mobility from continent to continent slowed to a halt, the need for San Diego-based business to develop partnerships in foreign markets, tap into an international customer base, and draw financing from international investors did not. And while the work of WTC changed and pivoted slightly, the role that the team played in keeping our business community connected to international markets and resources remained steadfast.

It used to be very common for me to bump into colleagues at events who would ask, “Where do you think San Diego’s next international flight will be to?” or “Where is the WTC team going for their next trade mission?” I honestly so look forward to the days when these conversations and plans will be the norm again. But until then, I take great pride in the work our team continues to do to with our small business community to keep them globally connected and well-positioned to take advantage of new opportunities around the world as they emerge.

And as the BA flight once again connects us to London, the UK, and Europe, we view it as one important step in getting our economy back to full strength.

With gratitude and optimism,

Mark Cafferty

Mark Cafferty
Mark Cafferty

President & CEO

LEARN MORE ABOUT WORLD TRADE CENTER SAN DIEGO

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Take your business global with MetroConnect VI

International arm of EDC opens applications for next round of MetroConnect

Take your company global or grow your existing international sales with MetroConnect VI, the sixth iteration of World Trade Center San Diego‘s flagship export assistance program presented by JPMorgan Chase and Procopio.

Apply now to become one of 15 companies selected to receive a $5,000 export assistance grant, attend private executive export workshops, get complimentary access to SystranPRO translation software, and more.

Company applicants must:

  • Be headquartered in San Diego
  • Be export-ready, meaning the company is already exporting its goods/services or looking to pursue international sales as a near-term priority
  • Have been in business for at least one year
  • Be an SBA-designated small businesses

In its first four years, MetroConnect San Diego assisted 65 small businesses in turning $790,000 in export funding into:

  • $85,000,000 in new international sales
  • 500 new international contracts
  • 18 new offices around the world

Meet the MetroConnect alumni, including past winners EDDY Pump, CureMatch, Cypher Genomics, and Rough Draft Brewing.

MetroConnect companies receive:

  • $5,000 private-sector funded export assistance grant
  • Seven executive workshops on export-related topics
  • Complimentary access to SystranPRO machine translation software
  • Discounts on international travel with partner airlines, such as American Airlines, British Airways, and Japan Airlines
  • EDC investor benefits for the duration of the program ($5,000 value)
  • PR and marketing support from WTC San Diego
  • Access to a network of mentors, consultants, and service providers in San Diego and overseas
  • Chance to compete for a $25,000 grand prize

Apply here by DECEMBER 17

The application takes approximately 30 minutes to complete.

Learn more: