On September 20, TEC Edmonton announced the launch of the TEC Global Connector at the Doing Business in Latin America event, cohosted at the Shaw Conference Centre with Edmonton Economic Development Corporation.

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TEC Global Connector is supported by Western Economic Diversification and helps Albertan companies reach international markets. These companies are important to Alberta’s economic growth and diversification. This is demonstrated by a survey of entrepreneurs who have worked with TEC Edmonton over the past five years, which shows that technology based exporters grow 50 per cent faster and invest three times as much in research and development in Alberta than those with only domestic and U.S. sales.

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TEC Global Connector embeds multi-lingual TEC Edmonton experts in companies to help them communicate and work in new markets, as well as utilizing specific local information and ground personnel in the target countries. This service gives continuity to the initial support received by the Federal Trade Commissioner Service. TEC Global Connector plugs entrepreneurs into a network that is a unique blend of internationally-based business incubators, accelerators, not-for-profits, and professionals. A map of TEC Edmonton institutional partners can be seen here.

In addition, TEC Global Connector offers five areas of service: market research, market entry support, business development support, intellectual property assistance, and connection to funders and financial groups. This complements the existing suite of programs at TEC Edmonton as well as those of other government and not-for-profit agencies.

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The Doing Business in Latin America event is an example of how mixing cultures can lead to new and interesting things. The evening featured Latin cuisine, Chilean wine tasting, and dance lessons with local dance company Ludic Zouk. Attendees also heard from guest experts Mark Benz (VP of Sherritt Technologies), Jerry Hanna (CEO/President of Clearflow Group Inc.), and Quinn Holtby (CEO/President of Katch Kan), all of whom have experience with entering the Latin American market.

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The advice given by all three panelists had one commonality: do your homework and get to know the local culture your company is about to enter. “Learn about the local government and utilize local connections,” said Jerry Hanna. “Find out how you can fit them, not how they fit you.”

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If you think your business may be ready to enter international markets, please contact us. If TEC Edmonton can’t help we’ll know someone who can.

Jorge Gonzalez
Program Manager, Latin America
Phone: (780) 492-4288
Email: jorge.gonzalez@tecedmonton.com

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