Winsert, Graftobian, Croix Valley Meals snag 2022 Governor’s Export Awards

2022 Governor's Export Awards recipients

2022 Governor’s Export Awards recipients, from left to proper, Eric G. Coffman, President, Graftobian Make-up Firm, Lu Holter, Co-Proprietor, Croix Valley Meals and Mark Coduti, President, Winsert.

Success in rising worldwide gross sales has earned three Wisconsin firms—Graftobian Make-up Co., Croix Valley Meals and Winsert LLC — this yr’s Governor’s Export Achievement Awards. 

“Exports play a important function in our state’s financial success, and selling Wisconsin’s high quality merchandise, industries and assets continues to be such an essential a part of our work to broaden export alternatives and construct a robust, resilient economic system,” mentioned Governor Tony Evers. “The oldsters we’re recognizing with these awards have confirmed themselves as modern enterprise leaders in our state whose efforts have helped make sure that Wisconsin stays a outstanding international commerce companion with international locations worldwide. We’re glad to have the ability to honor and have a good time their successes.” 

“These firms have distinguished themselves by figuring out methods to thrive in worldwide markets, create jobs right here at dwelling and assist to make Wisconsin an excellent stronger participant in international commerce,” mentioned Missy Hughes, WEDC secretary and CEO. “They’re setting inventive examples for different Wisconsin firms to observe.” 

The Governor’s Export Achievement Awards started in 1981 to acknowledge firms which have contributed to Wisconsin’s exporting power by attaining extraordinary ends in worldwide markets and elevating Wisconsin’s competitiveness within the international economic system. 

The awards serve a twin goal: to acknowledge firms’ good work and to spotlight examples of greatest practices in export development so different Wisconsin firms can study and apply comparable techniques.  

Nominees have been evaluated on measurable export development, innovation, and contributions to the state’s total economic system and commerce growth. 

This yr’s winners are: 

Croix Valley Meals 

Based in a 100-square-foot house at the back of a meat market in 2009, as we speak this firm makes 44 merchandise in a brand new 20,000-square-foot manufacturing facility. Croix Valley’s merchandise embody sauces, dry rubs, seasonings and Bloody Mary taste enhancers. The corporate can be one in every of a restricted group of small-batch contract packagers within the U.S. 

Primarily based in Hudson, Croix Valley started exporting in 2018, promoting $9,158 of its merchandise internationally that yr. That quantity has grown to greater than $190,000 to date in 2022, representing 22% of the corporate’s complete gross sales. 

Croix Valley’s first foray into exporting got here with gross sales to a Canadian firm in 2018, and the agency has since expanded to doing enterprise with a distributor within the Netherlands that handles accounts on Croix Valley’s behalf in Slovenia, Italy, the Czech Republic, Belgium and the Netherlands. 

Proprietor Lu Holter accomplished the ExportTech Program on the College of Wisconsin-Stout in 2022. The corporate additionally obtained a grant to exhibit at a Paris commerce present and is discussing concepts to spice up its profile in Japan, Australia and Chile. 

Graftobian Make-up Firm 

Graftobian manufactures and distributes just about each kind of make-up. Its merchandise embody DISGUISE STIX® face portray make-up; shade and glitter hairsprays and gels; Graftobian Theatrical® Make-Up and equipment for stage, TV, movie, particular results and different makes use of; and most not too long ago, Graftobian Extremely HD Glamour Make-Up, a high-definition make-up for TV, movie and print media magnificence and style work. 

The Madison firm has exported because the early Nineteen Eighties. It has urged different companies to become involved with exporting and has even produced a how-to video on exporting. Latest orders have come from Spain, India, France and South Africa. Graftobian now ships about 30% of its merchandise internationally and was named the U.S. Small Enterprise Administration’s Small Enterprise Exporter of the 12 months in 2022. 

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, it developed a two-camera, 4K video conferencing system to conduct worldwide digital conferences and exhibit its merchandise. The system allowed Graftobian to showcase how flawlessly its merchandise carry out underneath ultra-high-definition cameras. In 2020, Graftobian collaborated with Make-up Magic in Seoul, South Korea, to conduct a coaching seminar for greater than 100 college students on Graftobian’s intensive make-up library. 

Winsert LLC 

Situated in Marinette, Winsert is a number one international supplier of modern alloy options to a wide range of industries. It has growth, testing and manufacturing capabilities for cobalt, nickel and iron-based alloys for purposes corresponding to medium- and heavy-duty engines, energy era, emission controls, industrial valves, forestry and meals processing. 

Exporting is an integral a part of Winsert’s long-term development technique. Its export gross sales have diversified in the course of the pandemic, however its proportion of complete worldwide gross sales has elevated annually. In 2021, the corporate recorded about $47 million in complete gross sales and notched its highest export proportion so far, with 66% of its merchandise being shipped abroad. 

The corporate presently ships to 29 nations. It established a gross sales workplace in Munich and is within the means of hiring further employees in Europe to help its gross sales development. Winsert can be increasing into Asia, with a gross sales and technical help crew in Japan. Because the pandemic eases and journey turns into secure, Winsert officers hope to renew face-to-face interactions with companions globally to take care of its aggressive edge. 


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