N.J. announces $500K to expand small business exporting

The New Jersey Department of State’s Business Action Center was awarded $500,000 in federal funds for the State Trade Expansion Program to support new-to-exporting food and beverage manufacturers in underserved business communities.

Through NJSTEP, which is funded in part through a grant from the U.S. Small Business Administration, the NJBAC offers an opportunity to help Small Business Enterprises receive financial awards to offset export promotion costs partially. It includes expenses related to the internationalization of website and e-commerce fees, design of international marketing media, participation in international trade missions and trade events, as well as fees for services provided by the U.S. Commercial Service.

“The goal of this year’s NJSTEP program is to support New Jersey food and beverage manufacturers in underserved business communities that seek to start selling internationally. The program will provide export resources to minority-, LGBTQ-, women- and veteran-owned businesses to develop better access to global markets,” New Jersey Secretary of State Tahesha Way said. “NJSTEP will help these companies realize foreign sales opportunities, and we look forward to seeing how this will impact the state’s economy.”

The state’s successful NJSTEP program has been awarded funding for nine consecutive years. The program has previously assisted hundreds of businesses, leading to millions of dollars in export sales around the world.

“Selling into global markets is not only for large or established firms. We are encouraging food and beverage manufacturers from underserved business communities to begin exporting by applying for a NJSTEP grant,” New Jersey Business Action Center Executive Director Melanie Willoughby said.

The application portal for the NJSTEP program opens Oct. 1. To learn more, visit the organization’s website here or call 800‑JERSEY‑7.