- Free initial consultations
- Discounted service packages
- Priority participation in upcoming trainings for Montana technical companies focused on cloud computing, high-value photonics, and pharma exports
Why does Montana need TechEx?
For nearly two decades, MWTC has served Montana as a trusted adviser for businesses wanting to connect globally and prosper locally. The TechEx Initiative will help Montana businesses in industries such as cloud computing, photonics, and bioscience move to the forefront of technical exports by bringing together an experienced team in international trade and technical law and offering practical training based on the every-day experience of real Montana companies.
“These companies have largely geographically agnostic business models,” said MWTC Executive Director Brigitta Miranda-Freer. “They’re thriving in Montana because their knowledge-based workers demand the types of lifestyle amenities our state provides. They will become an increasingly important part of our state’s economic base and certainly our base of exporting companies, given that they are not subject to the traditional geographic barriers to export. We need to do what we can to fan the flame and expedite the international market entry and expansion efforts of these firms.”
According to a 2015 report from the University of Montana’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research, Montana’s high-tech and manufacturing industry is growing eight times the rate of the Montana economy. In Missoula, tech companies like Submittable and EDULOG are growing and leaving their marks, and according to the Montana High-Tech Business Alliance’s February profile, 16.4 percent of companies in the alliance are software/SaaS companies.
But not every company has found the help it needs to expand.
“Technical assistance for these types of technology exports is difficult to obtain,” Miranda-Freer said.
Common problems that exporters have to navigate include a lack of uniformity in export regulations, security considerations and tax structure, and while the global demand for cloud computing technology is clear, export figures are elusive given the rapidly changing nature of the industry. However, projections regardless of source point to a strong global market with anticipated exponential growth.
“TechEx will provide a novel, comprehensive approach to solving these issues for cloud computing, photonics and bio-related businesses across Montana,” Miranda-Freer said. “Beginning in November, MWTC will provide access to a team of export professionals, as well as targeted trainings in application of VAT, regulated exports, international intellectual property protection and other topics designed to increase Montana’s technology exports—an important and growing part of Montana’s economy moving forward.”
The team consists of five experts, leaders and entrepreneurs: Justin Cook, certified U.S. export compliance officer; Udo Fluck, cross-cultural researcher and educational entrepreneur; Joel Henry, senior counsel with Michael Best and co-founder of Agile Data Solutions; Angela Marshall Hofmann, founder and president of World Strategies LCC; and Antoinette Tease, intellectual property attorney.
Together, these dynamic members of MWTC’s Tech Export Team aim to move the needle on Montana’s tech-based exports by giving businesses access to their knowledge and experience. Initial free consultations and discounted service packages will be available for MWTC members. All others welcome. Please contact MWTC for information regarding upcoming training on topics of common interest to exporting technology firms.