In November 2017, World Trade Center Savannah (WTCSav) led a delegation of regional economic development executives to Bremen, Halle (Saale) and Munich, Germany for an unprecedented Regional Business Development Initiative.

The group of 11 pitched the qualities of coastal Georgia, building relationships with businesses and officials in Germany, one of the state’s largest trade partners.

After identifying Germany as a target country, one of the best potential opportunities for investment and trade, World Trade Center Savannah, worked to expand prospects for coastal Georgia by getting the whole region involved.

“This trip is taking our collective efforts as a region, as a coast to the next level,” said Trip Tollison, President and CEO of the Savannah Economic Development Authority and World Trade Center Savannah. “We can’t market and sell our organizations, our areas and our communities while sitting in our communities. It’s just not going to happen.”

The delegation visited with small- to medium-sized German enterprises that have an interest in exploring opportunities to expand into the United States to familiarize those companies with the many attributes of the coastal Georgia region and how it could serve as an ideal gateway into the U.S. market.

“When World Trade Center Savannah suggested a Regional Trade Mission to Germany, my reaction was a hopeful one.  After participating in the mission, I am confident in saying that my hope was well placed,” said Benjy Thompson, Chief Executive Officer, Development Authority of Bulloch County. “The WTC Savannah team did an outstanding job of organizing the trip, facilitating business development opportunities and taking care of the group.  This trip is exactly the kind of activity that will contribute to the success of the WTC Savannah Development Authority partners and benefit our entire region.”

After meeting with the delegation, companies were invited to apply to join the 2018 Savannah Gateway Regional Showcase delegation in Savannah, GA, April 9-13, 2018. Every year World Trade Center Savannah, in partnership with Georgia Power, welcomes an international business delegation to the coastal Georgia Region during the Savannah Music Festival. The goal is to further develop trade opportunities, increase foreign-direct investment and help the coastal Georgia regional businesses expand internationally through trade opportunities.