Together with our World Trade Center team, I wish you, your families, and colleagues a happy, healthy and fulfilling New Year!
As we begin 2021, for many, it is with a mixture of relief, gratitude, and impatience as we close one tumultuous chapter and look forward to a new and more hopeful one. In 2020, like many non-profits and the companies we serve, we pivoted and transitioned well to virtual events, including our signature “Bringing the World To PA” and World Trade Centers Day Celebration fundraiser. We created new programming to meet immediate needs of our members and to help them stay on course for future growth. By the end of 2020, our team helped companies register some $104M, testimony to their resiliency and the dedication of our team to their success.
And we never lost sight of our commitment to staying connected and of service to our exporting companies -- and to connecting them with one another. We began 2021 therefore with our popular “Member Conversations,” the informal gathering place for our members, that continues to be a great way for people to stay in touch, learn from one another, and share creative solutions for coping with and planning beyond COVID. On March 25, in partnership with the Fox School of Business at Temple University, we will present our Annual Global Business Conference, the region’s first, comprehensive look at the year ahead for the global economy, with international market experts and business leaders offering insight on best opportunities and strategies for success. Our China and India/Southeast Asia Clubs will continue these discussions, meeting throughout the year to share best practices on doing business in these markets.
COVID-19 and its aftermath is a reminder of the role that we will continue to play in Greater Philadelphia’s economic recovery. It is reflected in our new mission statement and 2020-2022 Strategic Plan, “To bring growth and prosperity to businesses, communities, and neighborhoods in Greater Philadelphia and worldwide through global trade.” We will further our mission in traditional and practical ways, with our trademark trade counseling and by introducing an exciting new platform for members to connect and learn from one another. We will open new opportunities for companies to reach new customers through the world trade center network. The World Trade Center of Greater Philadelphia will widen its reach to new audiences within our communities, to minority and women-owned businesses with the message that, by selling to the world, together we can grow a vibrant, inclusive, and connected economy for Greater Philadelphia!
Simply stated, we are committed to advancing Philadelphia and the region’s economic and global leadership and place in the world.
As we begin this promising new year, I want to thank our talented team, members, Board and Advisory Council, sponsors and partners for their support and helping to make our good work possible.
Here’s to a great 2021!