The Quad Cities Manufacturing Innovation Hub, an initiative of the Quad Cities Chamber, is currently seeking businesses wanting to learn how to take advantage of growth opportunities in global markets through the ExporTech™ export training program.  Valued at $6,000, the training will be provided at no cost as part of the Illinois Defense Industry Adjustment (DIA) Program, of which the Hub is a part. On average, participating companies generate $770K in new export sales.

ExporTech™ provides:

  • A structured export strategy and business development process that assists companies to accelerate growth.
  • Assistance developing an export plan. 
  • Help efficiently connecting with local and national exports that help navigate the export sales process. 

“This program is yet another example of how the Hub can help our area defense manufacturers and others in their supply chain diversify their products and their customers.  Doing so is not only helpful for businesses’ short-term growth but also for their long-term viability if and when market forces change,” says Vicky Miller, Director of the Defense Industry Economic Diversification Program for the Quad Cities Chamber. “Keeping our defense suppliers strong keeps our area economy strong.”

The Hub has partnered with Iowa State University’s Center for Industrial Research and Service (CIRAS) and the Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center (IMEC) to provide a comprehensive combination of group workshop activity as well as individual hands-on training and coaching totaling 100-150 hours.  At the end of the training, participants will be able to execute an individualized business diversification plan for their company as it relates to the export market.

Ideal companies for the training include those new to exporting but ready to commit resources, limited or moderate exporters whose export sales are less than 10 percent of their revenue yet they want to become more proactive about international growth, or experienced exporters whose international exporting has grown to more than 10% of their sales and are ready to achieve the next level of growth.

Companies wishing to be considered for inclusion in the training must:

  • Be a Department of Defense supplier (either direct or as a supplier of a supplier).
  • Not currently be receiving other government grant funds.
  • Have management support/involvement.
  • Provide one or more qualified personnel to attend the workshops (Aug. 9, Aug. 30, Sept. 22) and receive individual coaching.
  • Complete an impact survey at the end of the project.
  • Have a business located in either Scott, Clinton, Muscatine, Jackson, or Cedar Counties in Iowa or Rock Island, Whiteside, Henry, Mercer, or Knox Counties in Illinois.

To apply for the program, please contact Hub project manager Gary Grebner at or 309-525-7014 no later than Friday, July 21.

About the Illinois DIA Program

The Illinois DIA Program supports the state’s defense and manufacturing industries by delivering resources and providing new insights that help companies and communities grow, diversify, and become more resilient. The Illinois DIA Program covers five communities considered to be at high risk to market force changes due to their ties to the defense industry, a high concentration of manufacturers or both. Areas include the Quad Cities, Rockford, Northeastern Illinois, Peoria and Southwestern Illinois.

With funding from the U.S. Department of Defense, Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA), the program is executed through a partnership between the University of Illinois System, the Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce, and the Voorhees Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).

About the Quad Cities Chamber

The Quad Cities Chamber is a champion for business and community growth in the region. It proudly helps drive Q2030: A Regional Action Plan to increase talent, jobs and economic opportunity for all. The Quad Cities Manufacturing Innovation Hub is a program of the Chamber that supports the prosperity pillar of Q2030 by providing a network of resources and support for area manufacturers and others in the defense industry supply chain to connect, collaborate, and learn about the technological and digital changes that will transform the face of their industry.

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