FW: In-town print pool No. 1

From: Alex Leary [mailto:xxx@email.com]
Sent: Wednesday, July 22, 2015 3:19 PM
To: Barnes, Desiree N. EOP; Allen, Jessica L. EOP
Subject: In-town print pool No. 1

POTUS met in Roosevelt Room with a group of small business owners, lawmakers and other officials as part of WH push for reauthorization of the Export-Import Bank.

Pool spray at end of meeting.

It's not as exciting as Donald Trump, POTUS said to laughter, but he stressed the issue is critical to business owners across the country.

"This should be a no-brainer," POTUS said.

He said the Ex-Im Bank has for decades helped businesses sell products overseas. "It helps a small coffee company or quiche company but also large manufacturers of trains or bridges and infrastructure ..."

"The Export-Import Bank makes money for the U.S. government. I just want to be clear about this: This is not a situation in which taxpayers are subsidizing these companies."

POTUS noted that the bank has historically gotten bipartisan support on Capitol Hill and said it was a "shame" Congress did not reauthorize. (Bank has chance in Senate highway funding measure.)

Referencing similar programs elsewhere around the globe, POTUS said: "For us to be the only country that leaves these outstanding companies high and dry makes absolutely no sense."

Confronting critics who call it corporate welfare, POTUS added, "That is wrong. It is true Boeing is able to sell planes and GE is able to sell big turbine engines, in part because of this kind of financing arrangement." But he cited the owner of a small coffee shop seated at the table (see below) and the quiche maker.

"From coast to coast," POTUS said, "people are being affected by this. We've heard stories from these companies right now that orders are on hold, business is in danger, potentially expansions will stall, fewer employees will be hired if we do not get this done. So we need to get this done. ... We can't have American workers losing jobs because Congress doesn't act or because of some ideological arguments that don't make any sense, don't match up with the facts."

From the White House:

Attendees at the President’s meeting with small and medium-sized businesses on the importance of the Export-Import Bank include:

·         Representative Denny Heck (Washington -10)

·         Representative Gwen Moore (Wisconsin-04)

·         Representative Maxine Waters (California-43)

·         Mayor John Giles, Mayor of Mesa, Arizona

·         Mayor Sandy Stimpson, Mayor of Mobile, Alabama

·         Valerie Jarrett, Senior Advisor to the President

·         Jeff Zients, Director of the National Economic Council

·         Fred Hochberg, Chair of EXIM bank

·         Wanda Felton, Vice Chair of EXIM bank

·         Luis Arguello, Chairman & CEO, DemeTech – Miami, FL

DemeTech Corporation is a Florida-based manufacturer that produces and exports surgical sutures and blades to more than 100 countries around the world. However, DemeTech did not always sell its sutures and blades internationally. Before purchasing EXIM Bank insurance, DemeTech was unable to provide credit to its international customers, preventing it from going after large orders, and causing potential clients to turn to foreign competitors. Since partnering with EXIM in 2000, DemeTech Corporation has quadrupled its workforce. The company now sells its made-in-America sutures in more than 100 countries and revenue has grown more than 400%. They also occupied a factory building that had been abandoned years ago, breathing new life into the company’s community. Without EXIM Bank, these large sales could once again become out of reach for the company and its employees. DemeTech was the recipient of the Department of Commerce’s “Export” Award in 2010 by Sec. Locke.

·         Susan Axelrod, President, Love & Quiches – Freeport, NY

Started in Susan’s kitchen in 1973, Love & Quiches sells quiches and desserts to customers all around the world, with a focus on the Middle East and Asia. The business outgrew the kitchen, a garage, a local storefront, and its first factory, and now operates out of a state-of-the-art manufacturing facility in Nassau County, NY. With private financing options unavailable for many of its export sales, Love & Quiches turned to ExIM insurance in 2005, reducing the company’s risk. As is common with small business exporters, once Love & Quiches had its exports insured, the company’s bank also got comfortable enough to provide it a working capital loan, fueling growth further. Today, exports are approaching almost 25% of the company’s total sales, supporting an additional 25 dependable jobs on Long Island. Without EXIM insurance, those jobs and that growth would be put at serious risk.

·         Mary Howe, President, Howe Corporation – Chicago, IL

Howe Corp was started Inc., 1912, when a Midwesterner named William Henry Howe who was working as a mechanic at a small dairy and ice cream plant saw an opportunity for improvement in the refrigeration industry. Soon, Howe and his three sons were designing, producing, and servicing state-of-the-art refrigeration equipment on their own—and, more than a century later, their company lives on, and their ice machines can be found keeping food fresh and serving countless other functions in markets around the globe. A few years ago, Mary’s international customers began asking if they could have more time to pay – but as a small manufacturer, Howe didn’t have the cash on-hand to be able to afford a long wait. An insurance policy from EXIM proved to be the most cost-efficient way to solve the problem. With Howe’s export sales protected by EXIM against payment delays, her bank then also became comfortable increasing Howe’s working capital cash flow. This enabled the company to fulfill sales orders and keep the factory running during tough times – and it helped Mary support the 40% of her employees whose jobs depend on export sales. Mary’s annual policy has been renewed six times, and the company has recently added two additional employees due to EXIM’s support.

·         David Ickert, Vice President of Finance, AirTractor – Olney, TX

Air Tractor has manufactured agriculture aircraft in the West Texas town of Olney for more than 40 years, and they export their products to scores of countries on six continents. EXIM Bank’s medium term financing has been a critical tool for Air Tractor’s growth and the employee-owned company now has 265 people on the job—quite a lot for the three-stoplight town of Olney.  One of the more than 1,400 Texas businesses that has utilized EXIM Bank financing since 2009, recently Air Tractor’s President of Finance, David Ickert, said that 68 jobs would be lost if EXIM Bank isn’t reauthorized.

·         Susan Jaime, Founder, Ferra Coffee - San Antonio, TX

Ferra Coffee is an organic roasters specializing in design blends for Commercial, Restaurant, Private Label and retail. Because of the support that the Export-Import Bank provides, including  doing their due diligence in checking that the distributors with whom they establish relationships and make contracts are legitimate, and that they do not get involved with dubious, unreliable or criminal groups while conducting International Trade business, the ExIm Bank has truly ensured success. The ExIm bank, as it insures payment to their shipments, and has given the company security and comfort of knowing that the value of the product shipped is securely and legally insured. The ExIm bank also allows Ferra to offer products that have a higher quality for the Gourmet Market. Ferra Coffee International, is completely dependent for our growth and survival on our ability to sell internationally. The ExIm Bank is the one and only entity that they rely on to help continue to grow, be competitive in markets that are not available to us in our own country, and to give the necessary competitive edge in international trade.

·         Daniel Roberts, [Dan Roberts] President and General Manager, Manhasset Specialty Company- Yakima, WA

Hailing from Yakima, Washington, the employee-owned Manhasset Specialty Company has relied on EXIM’s export credit insurance to reach foreign markets like France and Germany without the risk of non-payment by their buyers overseas. Manhasset’s exports of “the best music stands in the whole world” have increased from five percent to over a third of their total sales in the last fifteen years. And since they began utilizing EXIM insurance, Manhasset has expanded the number of markets it sells into three fold – from customers in ten countries to thirty. As President Dan Roberts said, “the EXIM Bank is very important to Manhasset.”

·         Jim Rutkowski, Jr., General Manager, Industrial Sales & Manufacturing - Erie, PA

Industrial Sales & Manufacturing (ISM) is a family owned contract manufacturer of machined, fabricated and assembled components located in Erie, Pennsylvania. ISM, like many manufacturers of its kind and size, is a part of the supply chain of larger exporters – in ISM’s case, that’s GE Transportation which makes locomotives for export a few miles away. ISM has grown by supplying GE components. ISM sees increased orders and employment every time EXIM Bank provides a loan guarantee to a foreign company that buys GE’s made-in-America locomotives. GE faces fierce competition from companies heavily backed by China’s EXIM Bank. Jim says that ISM and its employees would lose 10% of his sales if EXIM remained lapsed – and the effects are already real. GE Transportation had a large pending order in Angola when the Bank lapsed. This order is now under serious threat from foreign competition backed by their own country’s EXIM Bank.  Losing this guarantee, increases the chances of losing the order entirely or GE could manufacture overseas, taking its supply chain benefits and jobs with it.

·         Paul Sullivan, Vice President of International Business Development, Acrow Bridges – Parsippany, NJ

Acrow Bridge, based in Parsippany, NewJersey, has specialized in the design,manufacture and supply of PrefabricatedModular Steel Bridges for more than 60years, supporting bridge infrastructureprojects across the globe. Acrow’s significantinternational experience has includeddeliveries to over 80 countries around theworld, covering Africa, the Americas,Europe, the Middle East and Asia. Prior to the lapse, EXIM approved loan guarantees to finance the sales of Acrow bridges to the governments of Cameroon and Zambia. Acrow faces fierce competition from companies in the UK, France, Austria and China. Since the lapse in EXIM’s authority, Acrow’s Chinese and European competitors have been very aggressive in suggesting to Acrow's clients that any project depending on Exim-supported financing cannot be trusted and that the bridges to be delivered as part of the Acrow projects should be immediately awarded to these Chinese and European manufacturers, emphasizing that they have the full support of their domestic export credit agencies.

·         John “Trey” Winthrop, Vice President of Finance, Bob’s Red Mill – Milwaukie, OR

Founded in 1978, Bob’s Red Mill is an employee-owned Oregon company that was started by Bob Moore in 1978. Today, Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods produces a wide range of more than 400 products, a wide range of flours and grain mill products, including whole grain and gluten-free items, oats, barley, cornmeal, cereals, baking and soup mixes, dried-fruits, nuts and seeds among other products. Since 2012, Bob’s Red Mill has used the EXIM’s export credit insurance product to add 15 new customers, boost export sales 35% and grow to more than 430 employees in the Portland, Oregon

Alex Leary

Tampa Bay Times

Washington Bureau Chief

(202) xxx-xxx-xxxx | xxx@email.com

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