Pilot project helps Vernon small businesses access export services

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A new pilot program to help small B.C. businesses navigate export services is now being offered in a number of communities throughout the province, including Vernon.

Export Navigator is a one-year pilot project the Province has developed in partnership with Small Business BC and federally-funded Community Futures offices. The B.C. government is contributing more than $500,000, Community Futures is providing $140,000 and Small Business BC is administering the project.

The program, which is part of a commitment in the #BCTECH Strategy to help small businesses become export ready, is designed to assist growth-oriented businesses that can demonstrate a capacity to increase production and have the resources to commit to exporting. Trained export advisors in each community are providing personalized support, helping to identify and connect businesses to the appropriate programs, services and contacts at every stage of the export process.

Vernon has two export advisors operating out of the Community Futures North Okanagan office. 

Complementing this work are new export tools to encourage export growth and simplify the process, including:

  • A streamlined business needs and export readiness assessment; and
  • A client workbook that empowers businesses with information and knowledge to advance their export goals.

The other pilots are taking place in Prince George and two additional communities that will be announced in the coming days.

The #BCTECH Strategy is a key component of the BC Jobs Plan to support the growth of B.C.'s vibrant technology sector and strengthen British Columbia's diverse innovation economy.

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