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Thought Leader Metro Business

Canadian Trade Finance Institution Chooses Metro Atlanta as First U.S. Home

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Photo above: From left to right: Christelle Shirandi, Export Development Canada’s coordinator in Atlanta; Mairead Lavery, EDC president and CEO; Canadian Consul General Nadia Theodore, and Michael Gonsalves, EDC senior regional manager in Atlanta.

The economic strength of the U.S. Southeast, the diversity of its sectors and the presence of multiple Fortune 500 companies combined to make metro Atlanta the ideal U.S. landing spot for Canada’s Export Credit Agency – Export Development Canada (EDC).
EDC’s representation – its first in the U.S. – officially launched at an April 24 event at the Botanical Gardens. From their new hub in metro Atlanta, EDC will be a source of commercial financing to U.S. corporations and project owners either already buying from Canadian suppliers or with a potential to. Financing will mostly be provided by co-lending alongside financial partners that are already present in the region.   
EDC’s President and CEO Mairead Lavery spoke at the event on the importance of having people on the ground to build meaningful business ties with the Southeast.
“Success in international trade comes down to relationship-building. It’s not just about getting goods and services across the border – trade is about people,” Lavery said.
“Atlanta is the perfect hub for building these relationships, expanding our networks and, in the process, growing Canada’s business profile in the region. Our aim is to strengthen an already strong trading relationship between our two countries.”
For Canada, the Southeast represents a diverse industrial base that aligns with many of its own industries, including retail, aerospace, forestry, advanced manufacturing (including automotive) and advanced technology. Because of this natural fit, there are significant opportunities for import, export and investment.
Metro Atlanta Chamber representatives attended a number of events during EDC’s launch week. This included a women in business roundtable event, a Chamber luncheon, an economic forecast presentation at the Atlanta Fed and the final launch event at the Botanical Gardens.
“Being selected as the site of EDC’s first U.S. representation bolsters metro Atlanta’s reputation as a top-tier global competitor,” said Hala Moddelmog, president and CEO of the Metro Atlanta Chamber.
“It also solidifies the long-standing relationship that our region has with Canada and will drive new investment across industry sectors like cybersecurity, FinTech, IoT and supply chain, where metro Atlanta companies are already leading and innovating.”
In addition to being a source of financing to U.S. corporations, EDC will also introduce those corporations to Canadian companies that can help solve their business challenges. These matchmaking solutions can help them reduce costs, increase efficiency and drive innovation by tapping them into Canadian suppliers handpicked to suit their needs.
EDC’s representation will be located within the Canadian Consulate in Atlanta, where Consul General Nadia Theodore has been hard at work since she arrived in 2017, building bridges between Canada and the Southeast.
“Of all the cities in the U.S., it is wonderful that EDC chose Atlanta for their first American representation,” Theodore said.
“This city has demonstrated an openness towards global business, exhibited significant growth and has become an area of interest for Canadian companies seeking to grow in the U.S. market. I’m excited about the opportunities that EDC – working hand-in-hand with my office and the Trade Commission Service – can provide to local buyers of Canadian products and American companies seeking to invest in Canada.”

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