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Publish Date: 
Mar 26, 2014
By Tracy Harris

IN FEBRUARY, while we were in town for the Chicago Progressive International Motorcycle Show, we invited the members of CITCA to join us for lunch and a presentation on Dealer Expo 2014.

CITCA, the Chicago International Trade Commissioners Association, is an informal group of the top economic representatives from foreign governments based in Chicago who are responsible for building relationships and fostering the expansion of international trade and investment in the Midwest for their respective countries. In an increasingly globalized world, CITCA recognizes that international business is a two-way street and partnerships are crucial to a sustained economic success. 

Not only were we fortunate to have representatives from nearly every continent, but Kristian Richardson, Senior International Trade Specialist with the U.S. Department of Commerce, was also able to join us.

Shrug if you like – not something that affects your business? With over 1 million jobs in the Midwest alone coming from foreign companies who hire local workers for their U.S.-based plants and factories, CITCA plays a vital role in keeping their countries’ business communities informed about current conditions and potential new opportunities here in the States.

Trade shows are one of the more important tools CITCA uses to introduce their manufacturers to our retailers and importers – and our manufacturers to their retailers and distributors. Response from the members to our presentation about Dealer Expo – the largest, longest running trade show in North America dedicated to the powersports dealer community – was very favorable. In fact, many began talking immediately about exactly with whom and how they would be spreading the word.

That’s nice for us, but what about you? Well, new products drive more business and new business. New powersports products are introduced around the globe every year. When you can personally look over a new product – hold it, stress it, pull back its ‘covers’ – you can determine its quality and value. When you have an opportunity to meet with the manufacturer – look them in the eye, ask complex questions and get straight answers – you build trust and confidence.

\With partners like CITCA, we can bring those new products to you for your evaluation this year and at all future shows.

Tracy Harris is senior vice president of Advanstar Powersports Group, parent of Dealernews. Email her at tharris@advanstar.com

Article originally appeared in the April issue of Dealernews.