Export Strategy

Talking Trade

The Talking Trade Podcast is put on by WisBusiness and co-hosted by Sandi Siegel, President of M.E. Dey & Co. and Ken Wasylik, Managing Director of E.M. Wasylik Associates. Talking Trade covers topics across a variety of business disciplines such as export strategy, featuring a new guest each episode to share their expertise.

Talking Trade with Alan Gogbashian, UK Consul General in Chicago

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” UK Consul General in Chicago, Alan Gogbashian, shares insights on the post-Brexit global trade landscape and other trends. 

Trade between the United States and the UK is on the rise, he notes, as “the economic relationship is thriving” between the two nations. 

Gogbashian weighs in on the ripple effects of the UK leaving the European Union, noting uncertainty following the move in early 2020 has largely died down. He argues companies “now have the certainty they need,” pointing to various frameworks for “creating certainty and clarity” around international business. 

Talking Trade with Michael Sekula, InPro Corporation

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” Michael Sekula of InPro Corporation discusses global supply chain challenges and how companies are navigating them. 

Sekula is Vice President of Global Supply Chain Management and Safety for the Muskego-based company, which provides architectural products for commercial buildings. 

“There are a couple wars going on, there’s the Red Sea issue going on, and from an export and import perspective, it’s difficult,” he said. “But flying around to various countries … I was just in Europe, and I was just in Dubai, and in the end, you know, there might be those things going on but all they want to do is do business.” 

Talking Trade with Jackie Bojor of the FRD Center in Bucharest, Romania

In the latest edition of “Talking Trade,” Jackie Bojor of the FRD Center in Bucharest, Romania, discusses opportunities in the region for Midwest companies. 

Bojor is the director of business development for the Factor Regional Development Center’s Bucharest location. The advisory firm offers consulting, market research and other services focused on entering new markets and mergers and acquisitions. 

“As U.S. officials have recognized recently, Romania is a regional pillar of stability, energy security and economic development,” Bojor said, adding the country has a “very strong” industrial manufacturing sector that continues to grow. 

American-made vehicles, aircraft, electrical machinery and equipment are among the most in-demand products in the Romanian market, she explained. 

Talking Trade with Dennis Yen-Feng Lei, Director General of the Tapei Economic and Cultural Office in Chicago

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” Director General Dennis Yen-Feng Lei of the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Chicago discusses U.S.-Taiwan trade relations. 

Lei focuses on trade relationships between Taiwan and Midwest states in particular, noting the country recently signed economic agreements with leaders in Michigan and Indiana, as well as educational memorandums of understanding with Ohio, Indiana, Michigan and Minnesota. 

“We have a very promising future, our office is trying to increase more Taiwanese companies here, and also ask more American companies to invest in Taiwan,” he said. 

Talking Trade with Rick Graber, Former U.S. Ambassador to the Czech Republic

In the latest edition of “Talking Trade,” former U.S. Ambassador to the Czech Republic Rick Graber discusses the political landscape around the Russia-Ukraine war and how the conflict is affecting European economies. Graber, the former state Republican Party chair and current leader of the Bradley Foundation, says he differs from other Republicans who question why the United States is getting involved by providing aid to Ukraine. 

“I think there is a legitimate American interest, and I think the United States and the Biden Administration should have stepped up sooner, more quickly and more aggressively than they did,” he said. 

Talking Trade with Ognadon "Eddy" Djagou, Djaagou-A Export

In the latest edition of “Talking Trade,” Djaagou-A Export founder and CEO Ognadon “Eddy” Djagou discusses his food and beverage business and U.S.-Africa trade. Djagou launched the company in 2017, and since then has been exporting agricultural products from the United States to African countries, with a focus on West Africa. 

Djagou says many American companies don’t have that same level of access. But he notes the average person on the continent is relatively young and African markets are expanding rapidly. 

Talking Trade with Tim Sheehy, Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” MMAC President Tim Sheehy discusses his 31-year tenure with the Milwaukee chamber and the importance of business exports. Sheehy said one of his most important accomplishments while leading the MMAC has been helping more Wisconsin governors and mayors to understand the competitive global environment for corporate investment, as well as related opportunities. 

“One of the things I’ve learned from the countless trade missions that I’ve been on to Canada, South America, Mexico, the Middle East, Southeast Asia, is that every day those regions are getting up and competing for capital investment and jobs,” Sheehy said. 

Talking Trade with Wendy Pease, Rapport International

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” Rapport International owner Wendy Pease shares insights on the translation and interpretation industry. Pease discusses how technologies such as Google Translate have influenced this work. 

“When that first came out, we said ‘Oh, is Google Translate going to put us out of business?’ And it hasn’t,” she said. “It’s actually raised the demand for good translation, because now people understand that you can communicate across languages, and that there’s a way to do it appropriately.” 

Talking Trade with Primadi Soerjosoemanto, Asian Insiders

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” Asian Insiders Partner Primadi Soerjosoemanto shares insights on business opportunities in Indonesia. As the world’s fourth most populous country, Indonesia has a growing economy that’s attracting investment from many global companies, Soerjosoemanto explained. 

 Soerjosoemanto said policies advanced by the country’s government have drawn investment from around the world. As examples, he pointed to a recent law that allows more foreigners to work and live in Indonesia, as well as a new work permit for entrepreneurs. 

Talking Trade with Jason Culotta, Midwest Food Products Association

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” Midwest Food Products Association President Jason Culotta discusses supply chain challenges, impacts on pricing and more. Certain metals used in can manufacturing have been in short supply in the United States, he said, which impacts the Midwest canned food industry. The region supplies most of the U.S. canned vegetable supply,  from sweet corn to green beans. 

“We beat everyone in the world on quality, but on price … normally with labor it’s not an issue actually, surprisingly, compared to the foreign competition,” he said. “But this packaging issue, with the steel for the cans, has put us at a bit of a disadvantage.” 

Talking Trade with Ian Coxhead, Senior Research Fellow for the Institute of Developing Economies

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” co-hosts Sandi Siegel and Ken Wasylik interview Ian Coxhead, senior research fellow for the Institute of Developing Economies in Tokyo, Japan, about trade policy and Asian economics.Coxhead, a former host of the show, shares his perspective on China’s economy, noting its central economic role for other nations in Asia. 

“Before the global financial crisis, China was doing great with all of these policies and efficiency gains. Since about 2010, a lot less growth. And this year, much, much less growth in the Chinese economy,” Coxhead said. 

Talking Trade with Damon Holter, Croix Valley Foods

In the latest edition of “Talking Trade,” Croix Valley Foods owner Damon Holter discusses the company’s history, successes and plans for future expansion. Holter highlights the company’s efforts to reach international customers after realizing “the competition in the grocery industry is really cutthroat,” with relatively small margins. After being approached by a distributor in Canada, the company turned to buyers in the hardware and home improvement industry, Holter explained. 

Talking Trade with Canadian Consul General Aaron Annable

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” Canadian Consul General Aaron Annable shares the latest figures illustrating Canada’s trade relationship with Wisconsin. 

According to Annable, 174 Canadian companies currently operate in the state, employing more than 22,000 Wisconsin workers. Annual trade between Canada and the state reached $14.7 billion in 2022, marking a 13 percent increase from the prior year, he said. 

Talking Trade with Chris Wojtowicz, Small Business Development Center

In the latest episode of “Talking Trade,” international trade consultant Chris Wojtowicz of the Small Business Development Center highlights resources available to companies in the state. Wojtowicz touches on support offered by local chambers of commerce, economic development officials and state agencies such as DATCP and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp, and discusses the role of trade compliance experts for companies looking to reach international markets, noting the current trade landscape is becoming more complex. 

Talking Trade with Heather Ranck, Director of the Rural Export Center

In the most recent episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel chat with Heather Ranck, Director of the Rural Export Center, part of the US Department of Commerce. Ms. Ranck highlights resources available to rural companies that export or want to start exporting. According to Ms. Ranck, “There are three main barriers to exporting for rural exporters: knowledge, connections and confidence,”. 

Talking Trade with Jackie Carter, Port of Milwaukee Director

In the latest episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel chat with Jackie Carter, Director of the Port of Milwaukee. Ms. Carter explains that the Port of Milwaukee is the second largest port on the Great Lakes system, and describes some of the various commodities that come through the Port. 

Talking Trade with Buckley Brinkman, CEO of Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing and Productivity

In the latest episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel sit down with Buckley Brinkman, CEO of the Wisconsin Center for Manufacturing and Productivity. Brinkman highlights the ExporTech program which helps Wisconsin companies develop an export plan for their products in 90 days. Companies that go through the program gain about $1million in sales on average, according to Brinkman. 

Talking Trade with Terry Dittrich of MI Group

In the latest episode of Talking Trade, MI Group Senior Advisor Terry Dittrich outlines the path forward for rebuilding infrastructure in Ukraine. Terry believes that major funding is “probably about 6 to 12 months out”, as long as the war in Ukraine continues to subside.

Talking Trade with Pawan Bhatnagar of Kasvu Consulting, Asian Insiders

In the latest episode of Talking Trade, Pawan Bhatnagar of Kasvu Consulting and Asian Insiders highlights the resilience of the Indian economy. Global offshoring, digitalization, and energy transitions are three major trends that will contribute to India’s projected GDP growing by more than double from $3.5 trillion to $7.5 trillion by 2030. 

Talking Trade with Rebekah Sweeney of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association

In the latest episode of Talking Trade, Rebekah Sweeney of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association discusses 2022 dairy export data, highlights increased sales in LATAM, and shares her opinion on economic forecasts for 2023.

Talking Trade with Asia Society Policy Institute Vice President Wendy Cutler

In the latest episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel chat with Wendy Cutler, Vice President of the Asia Society Policy Institute. Wendy discusses recent tariff exclusions for several hundred products that have been extended for another 9 months. 

Talking Trade with Steve Wallace of the Omanhene Cocoa Bean Company

In this episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel sit down with Steve Wallace, President of the Omanhene Cocoa Bean Company. Listen in to hear Steve discuss the challenges associated with growing the Milwaukee-based business on an international scale. 

Talking Trade with Andy Rothman of Matthews Asia

In this episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel chat with former diplomat Andy Rothman of California firm Matthews Asia. Andy highlights the benefits of US engagement with China believes the initially bumpy transition from strict Covid protocols will ease next year. 

Talking Trade with Mark Dodsworth, Managing Director of Europartnerships

In this episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik and Sandi Siegel speak with Mark Dodsworth, Managing Director of Europartnerships. Mark is based in the UK and explains how the country has been impacted heavily by the pandemic, invasion of Ukraine, and Brexit. Mark also highlights some areas of opportunities for US companies going into the UK. 

Talking Trade with Mike Dankler, Principal of Michael Best Strategies

In this episode of Talking Trade, Sandi Siegel and Ken Wasylik speak with Mike Dankler, Principal of Michael Best Strategies. Mike covers the Section 301 tariffs on China and why he believes there may be “some tariff-liftings to come”, as well as other governmental topics relating to international trade.

Talking Trade with Bruce Glaub, Trade Acceptance Group

In this episode of Talking Trade, Sandi Siegel and Ken Wasylik speak with Bruce Glaub, Principal of Trade Acceptance Group, outlines the benefits of export credit insurance. Listen in to learn how important it is to have export credit insurance when selling and shipping goods internationally. 

Talking Trade with Mark Rhoda-Reis of DATCP

In this episode of Talking Trade, Sandi Siegel and Ken Wasylik speak with guest Mark Rhoda-Reis from the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade, and Consumer Protection. Mark shares the latest figures on Wisconsin agricultural exports in what may be a record-setting year. 

Talking Trade with E.M. Wasylik Associates Managing Director Ken Wasylik

In this episode of Talking Trade, Ken Wasylik discusses his approach for reaching new international markets. Listen in to learn Ken’s first steps to international development, positive takeaways from the pandemic, supply chain issues, and inflation. 

It Appears We Are Late To the Market - The Global Marketing Show

The Global Marketing Show hosted by Wendy Pease, President of Rapport International, discusses new trending international business topics in every episode. Check out Ken’s appearance on the podcast, discussing his approach on how early-stage exporters should decide which international markets to enter.

https://www.rapporttranslations.com/the-global-marketing-show/late-market 

Webinars

Market Research - A Key Element of a Successful Market Launch

In this webinar hosted by Global Chamber, Ken Wasylik highlights the importance of market research as an initial step to export development. Listen in to hear Ken’s thoughts on why research is an essential initiative to global expansion, as well as the three key questions to ask when deciding which markets to enter.