OPIC Holds Seminar for Kansas City Small Businesses
Wednesday, November 14, 2012
KANSAS CITY, Missouri – A seminar for Kansas City small businesses organized by the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC), the U.S. Government’s development finance institution, and World Trade Center Kansas City drew more than 50 small business owners today, educating participants about how OPIC products can help them take advantage of lucrative investment opportunities in emerging markets.
The Expanding Horizons seminar, held at the Boardroom at Union Station in Kansas City, Missouri, was the latest in a highly successful series that has educated more than 2100 small and medium-sized business owners across the United States about OPIC products and services.
“Small businesses are the essential engine of the American economy, generating two-thirds of U.S. jobs and roughly half of our GDP – yet they depend on the same opportunities to succeed as others. OPIC is uniquely positioned to enable Kansas City SMEs to make the most of investment opportunities in high-growth emerging markets – and business owners certainly took full advantage of that today,” said OPIC Director of Public Affairs Dr. Lawrence Spinelli.
OPIC speakers outlined the innovative financial tools – among them financing and political risk insurance – that the agency has used for 40 years to help U.S. businesses successfully invest in emerging markets. Participants also received detailed guidance on applying for OPIC support.
Since its establishment in 1971, OPIC has committed more than $454 million in financing and political risk insurance to projects sponsored by companies in Missouri and Kansas, supporting nearly 5000 U.S. jobs and another $1.4 billion in U.S. exports. For example, OPIC provided nearly $50 million in political risk insurance to Anheuser Busch International Holdings in order to expand its business in Brazil, producing canned beverages to sell in Sao Paulo and other cities.
Since 2006, OPIC has held Expanding Horizons events in Atlanta, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Newark, Houston, San Francisco, Boston, St. Louis, Denver, Philadelphia, Orange (CA), Raleigh, New Orleans, New York City and Seattle.
OPIC is the U.S. Government’s development finance institution. It mobilizes private capital to help solve critical development challenges and in doing so, advances U.S. foreign policy. Because OPIC works with the U.S. private sector, it helps U.S. businesses gain footholds in emerging markets catalyzing revenues, jobs and growth opportunities both at home and abroad. OPIC achieves its mission by providing investors with financing, guarantees, political risk insurance, and support for private equity investment funds.
Established as an agency of the U.S. Government in 1971, OPIC operates on a self-sustaining basis at no net cost to American taxpayers. OPIC services are available for new and expanding business enterprises in more than 150 countries worldwide. To date, OPIC has supported more than $200 billion of investment in over 4,000 projects, generated an estimated $75 billion in U.S. exports and supported more than 276,000 American jobs.