The goal for many US companies is to find a distributor for the EU region

Seven new US manufacturers will be represented at the USA Pavilion during METSTRADE this week trying to break into the EU market place in what one industry leader said is “hands-down, the best show to help them do that.”

National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) Senior Director of Export Development, Julie Balzano, told IBI late last week that METSTRADE puts US businesses on the international stage that attracts a global audience of qualified business-to-business customers.

“You get a B2B component at most any show,” she said, “but they also have that B2C (business-to-consumer) component. This is the only show that is exclusively B2B and that’s why it is so effective.”

Balzano told IBI the number of new companies exhibiting at the show ebbs and flows from year to year, based on a variety of factors.

“The goal for a lot of these companies is to find a distributor for the EU region and if they are successful in doing that, they will grow out of the USA Pavilion; they’ll use it as an incubator, so to speak.”

But Balzano warns US product producers should not turn their backs on export markets, explaining when the economy at home is good, relationships overseas should be fostered, so that when the next downturn comes established offshore markets can help sustain a manufacturer.

Balzano also speculated that some companies will write the EU off short-term because of the trade and tariff wars, but reminds them the EU is still open for business.

“The EU retaliatory tariffs are only on boats, not components and parts,” she said, stressing that “as long as US marine components, equipment and motors are competitively priced and innovative and in demand, it shouldn’t impact the effectiveness at all, because we’re not selling boats.”

In total, more than 100 US companies will be available throughout the 31st annual METSTRADE, which opens Tuesday in Amsterdam.