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SASCO Chemical: Export-Promotion Programs Can Help Drive Exports


Achieving success in exporting does not come easy, and sometimes hard work alone does not yield desired results. One business that can testify to that truth is SASCO Chemical, a third-generation, family-owned company in Albany, Georgia, that makes mold-release and anti-tack products for the rubber industry. After modest success in exporting for a number of years, in 2010-2011, their exports to Mexico suddenly surged by 2,800%.

What was the key to their rapid success? It was the realization that government export-promotion programs can go a long way in helping to participate in the right trade shows, make the most helpful contacts, find the right representatives, and convert foreign prospects into customers.

In the case of SASCO, the company began working closely with the Georgia Department of Economic Development, and the U.S. Foreign Commercial Service. It credits those agencies with playing pivotal roles in helping SASCO become a successful exporter. So successful, in fact, that it has been honored by the Governor’s office and its story has been told in prominent magazines like Global Trade and Industry Week.

The scope of export programs varies from state to state, but manufacturers should not simply assume that their state economic development office focuses only on site selection and business expansion projects. SASCO, in fact, learned about Georgia’s expansive export-assistance programs only when consulting with state officials about expanding their manufacturing plant.

The U.S. Foreign Commercial Service is a Commerce Department program that has experts stationed both within and in, at last count, about 75 foreign countries, for the express purpose of helping U.S. companies succeed in exporting. They work with first-time exporters, and companies like SASCO, that wish to ramp up an existing export program, as well as with seasoned exporters. Information can be found at

Aspiring exporters should know that they are not alone on the journey. Manufacturers like SASCO Chemical will attest to the value of consulting with state and federal export-assistance experts.