Representatives from nine countries recently visited northeastern Pennsylvania for the Bringing the World to PA event, sponsored by the state Department of Community and Economic Development’s Office of International Business Development.
Bringing the World to PA participants traveled across the Commonwealth, learning about different businesses and industries located throughout the state. At each location, Pennsylvania’s Authorized Trade Representatives (ATRs) met one-on-one with Pennsylvania companies seeking foreign market intelligence, agents and distributor candidates, and industry and government contacts. Other events included market presentations, educational seminars and networking receptions for businesses.
The northeastern Pennsylvania leg of the tour was sponsored by Penn’s Northeast, with a Lackawanna County component from The Scranton Plan, the economic development marketing affiliate of The Greater Scranton Chamber of Commerce.
“We are pleased to have had the opportunity to showcase the many business advantages available in Lackawanna County to an international delegation,” said Amy Luyster, assistant vice president of The Scranton Plan. “We look forward to working with our contacts to assist foreign-based companies as they consider a location in northeastern Pennsylvania.
While in Lackawanna County, the representatives visited Gertrude Hawk Chocolates, located in the Keystone Industrial Park in Dunmore. An intergenerational family-owned business, Gertrude Hawk Chocolates’ success is not only known regionally, but also nationally and internationally, showing that northeastern Pennsylvania plays a prominent role on the world stage.
“It was amazing for visit a family-owned business that has passed down through generations and that does so much more than its own brand,” said Angela Foley, who represented Australia. “It was surprising to see how far Gertrude Hawk Chocolates’ products travel with their international partners, such as Ben and Jerry’s Ice Cream. Their multinational client base is amazing.”
For Lynda Arsenault, who represented Canada, the hands-on experience at Gertrude Hawk Chocolates provided her with insight into the region’s growing business base.
“The innovation that is taking place in Lackawanna County is truly impressive,” she said. “The area’s value proposition is strong in talent, cost and location. Furthermore, in touring Gertrude Hawk Chocolates and meeting with key industry partners, I experienced a friendly business environment, one which will be conducive to creating synergies that will ultimately drive investment to the area.”
The nine Pennsylvania Authorized Trade Representatives who participated in Bringing the World to PA are Lynda Arsenault, Canada; Angela Foley, Australia; Supriya Kanetkar, India; Patrizia Mariani, Italy; David Moock, Germany; Irene Tsai, Taiwan and China; Amy Pan, Taiwan and China; Satoshi Takayama, Japan; and Joe Satoh, Japan.