Exporting Success Stories
Exporting a Service?
Here’s a few folks that did it right.
Read on to learn how they did it.
Exporting a Product?
A lot more logistics to contend with, but these leaders steered their companies towards growth.
ReliaReliability Center, Inc
Robert J. Latino, CEO
Reliability Center, Inc. specializes in the operational reliability of any system. This family-owned company primarily does its work in manufacturing plants, hospitals, government and service-related businesses.
RCI was founded by Charles J. Latino in 1985, after years of applying reliability principles at Allied Chemical. After a few decades, RCI saw a trend for US companies to develop their own internal reliability engineering departments. Fortunately, thanks to years of writing articles and books and delivering speeches, RCI had developed an international reputation. They sought out local businesses in target countries to be their representatives. These partnering companies were in complementary businesses already, enabling RCI to be an added offering to their existing product lines.
Their strategy worked. In the past two years, nearly 70% of RCI’s work has been international, with 60% in Saudi Arabia. The Hopewell-based company also does work in Bahrain, UAE, Qatar, Angola, Madagascar, Brazil, Chile, Venezuela, Argentina, Bolivia, Canada, Mexico, England, Germany, Wales, France, Netherlands, China, Kenya, South Africa, Colombia, Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, and Malaysia.
World Art Group
Lonnie Lemco, Owner/Vice President Sales
Richmond-based World Art Group designs, publishes and sells decorative artwork for the home décor market. In the early 2000s, World Art noticed that they attracted many international customers at trade shows, and sought out ways to maximize their global appeal. They worked with the Virginia Economic Development Partnership, who helped them with international research, trade missions, independent market visits, partner consulting, and other issues.
The company grew its export business from 1-2% of their total to more than 25% in 2016. Sales growth and profits year over year from exports have been high double digits since 2003. Today, World Art Group exports to more than 30 countries, including China, Australia, UAE, Brazil, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands.