Middle market companies interested in learning about the value, risks and reward of establishing an international presence recently gathered at Fisher for a 360-degree view of conducting business in the western hemisphere.

Representatives from businesses throughout the region took part in “Winning in the Americas: A Global Summit.” Sponsored by the National Center for the Middle Market (NCMM) and The Ohio State Center for International Business Education and Research (CIBER), the event brought together thought leaders and executives who shared their insights and best practices about global exports.

“The middle market is the point of the spear of U.S. competitiveness,” said Thomas A. Stewart, executive director of the NCMM. “The key reasons for events like the Global Summit are to help companies dismantle the reasons for not exporting, and amplify the reasons they should be doing it.

“The world is shrinking. If companies aren’t going out and meeting their competition, it’s only a matter of time before the competition comes to them.”

The event featured panel discussions that included academic and business leaders who explored key facets of exporting in the Americas, including risk, culture, taxes, supply chain, modes of entry, technology and governmental policy.

NCMM Global Summit 1
Brett Plitt Bruen discusses risks, trends and opportunities associated with international exporting in the western hemisphere at the "Winning in the Americas" summit, hosted by the National Center for the Middle Market and The Ohio State Center for International Business Education and Research.

The NCMM also released the findings of a study it conducted in partnership with FedEx and Nextrade Group, LLC, that surveyed 400 C-level middle market executives actively involved in financial decisions for their organizations and whose companies are already engaged in international markets. The survey identified trade and investment activities of middle market companies in the Americas and the best practices of internationalized middle market firms.

Brett Plitt Bruen, president of Global Situation Room, a consulting firm specializing in innovative solutions to help companies and organizations internationalize, led a discussion on the risks, trends and opportunities of expanding exports into the Americas. Bruen spent 12 years as a diplomat and worked as Director of Global Engagement at The White House.

Christina Sevilla delivered the event’s keynote address. Sevilla, deputy assistant U.S. Trade Representative, spoke of the Trans-Pacific Partnership and it benefits for the United States, its trade partners and middle market companies.

“One of our priorities as a research center at an academic institution like Fisher College of Business is to facilitate productive dialog between companies that have successfully grown and augmented their businesses with other middle market firms looking to expand and improve,” Stewart said. “We look forward to our continued partnership with the college and all the ways we can help middle market companies become an even greater presence in the U.S. economy.”