WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. Department of Commerce and NFTC’s Global Innovation Forum announced today the next phase of Startup Global, an innovative public-private initiative to help more startup firms think global from the earliest stages of a company’s growth.

The Commerce Department and Global Innovation Forum signed an updated Memorandum of Understanding that will strengthen and institutionalize Startup Global, which was launched by Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker in April 2015.  Startup Global supports an aggressive U.S. export strategy by making it easier for small and early-stage American entrepreneurs and business leaders to understand and access export resources and capitalize on growing opportunities around the world.

Under the new understanding, the Global Innovation Forum will work with the Commerce Department to bolster the initiative’s web and social media presence, execute a series of Startup Global events and develop content based on lessons learned.  The Global Innovation Forum will also explore additional collaboration in support of the International Trade Administration’s eCommerce Innovation Lab.

“Startup Global promotes the full array of federal government export assistance resources available to U.S. entrepreneurs interested in growing their businesses internationally,” said Secretary Pritzker. “This assistance is critical to expanding our economy and is core to the Department’s overall innovation strategy.”

“We are honored to help advance Startup Global and grateful for the leadership of Secretary Pritzker in recognizing the need to elevate the expertise and resources of the U.S. Government for globally-minded entrepreneurs,” said Jake Colvin, Executive Director of the Global Innovation Forum. “The Global Innovation Forum looks forward to continuing to strengthen Startup Global and increase the awareness of entrepreneurs of the public and private sector resources available to grow their businesses internationally.”

Through this partnership, the Commerce Department and Global Innovation Forum have organized a series of successful Startup Global forums in Long Island, Manhattan, Nashville, Pittsburgh, Seattle and Washington, DC. Highlights include –

In July 2015, the Nashville Entrepreneur Center hosted Startup Global Nashville, where entrepreneurs and experts discussed sector trends in international business, ranging from healthcare to supply chain and logistics.  The workshop featured the CEOs of Gibson Guitar, The Pasta Shoppe and InvisionHeart, executives from PayPal, Amazon Web Services and FedEx, and officials from the Commerce Department, Nashville Mayor’s office and the State of Tennessee.

In May 2016, Startup Global Seattle brought together startup, corporate and government leaders to discuss the challenges faced when going global and how to access the resources available within the U.S. Government and private sector at an event hosted by Microsoft and Silicon Valley Bank. At the event, Michelyn Caldwell, Owner of NB Products, Inc., observed that, “I was able to expand into more markets because of the assistance of the U.S. Commerce Department which made me feel more comfortable and got me the information I needed to move forward.”

In July 2016, the Department of Commerce, the Global Innovation Forum, eBay and the New York City Economic Development Corporation hosted Startup Global New York City at the Friends of eBay startup accelerator in Manhattan. Participants included Tekedra Mawakana, Vice President of Global Government Relations for eBay; Sean Leow, Director of International for Kickstarter; Julie Samuels, Executive Director at TechNYC; David Moreno, CEO of 232Tech; Nikki Lawrence, Cofounder & CEO of Gleem & Co.; Olga Vidisheva, Founder & CEO of Shoptiques and Michael Hermann, Director of Licensing, Andy Warhol Foundation.

For more information contact –

Veronica Turk, Global Innovation Forum, Tel: (202) 887-0278, veronica@globalinnovationforum.com

About the Global Innovation Forum

The Global Innovation Forum connects entrepreneur, nonprofit and university communities with corporations and government officials to explore the opportunities and challenges of engaging in the global marketplace. Through public forums, private workshops and online platforms, GIF elevates the global opportunity that exists, explores challenges to participating effectively in international markets and works to improve the public policy landscape to benefit a broad range of global innovators. GIF is a project of the National Foreign Trade Council Foundation. For more information, visit www.globalinnovationforum.com.

About the Startup Global Initiative

The International Trade Administration (ITA) at the U.S. Department of Commerce launched Startup Global in February 2015 to provide focused assistance and information to early-stage companies by building partnerships with the United States’ unparalleled incubators and accelerators, which are key centers of gravity and trusted advisers in the startup ecosystem. Startup Global produces educational seminars in partnership with local incubators and accelerators to cover the most-pressing issues startups face in the global business environment. Startup Global was launched as part of NEI/NEXT, the successor to the President’s National Export Initiative (NEI). The NEI/NEXT strategy coordinates federal programs and policies to help more U.S. companies begin exporting and expand to new markets by making it easier to get involved. For more information, visit www.trade.gov/neinext.