December Newsletter

Pictured: WTC Utah president & CEO Miles Hansen accepting the Salt Lake Chamber’s Community Partner of the Year Award, October 2, 2019. Photo courtesy of the Salt Lake Chamber.  


Those who’ve been keeping up with recent announcements through World Trade Center Utah are aware of the financial assistance and support our organization offers to promising Utah companies looking to grow internationally. Thanks to the success of our Utah companies over the past year, the State of Utah has received the largest increase in the country to our State Trade Expansion Program (STEP) Grant allocation, with $500,000 in grant funding coming to WTC Utah to help Utah small businesses enter and expand into dynamic global markets. WTC Utah administers these funds with a goal to increase the number of Utah businesses exporting and exploring significant new trade opportunities.

In addition to participating in a WTC Utah international trip–trade missions and trade shows–Utah companies can apply to receive STEP Grant funding for just about any costs associated with growing their business internationally, including these activities:

  • Foreign market sales trips
  • Services provided by the U.S. Department of Commerce
  • International trade shows
  • Fees for shipping sample products
  • Cost of compliance testing
  • Application export research tool subscription
  • Website translation into foreign language, search engine optimization, and localization services
  • Design of marketing media
  • Export conferences, meetings, symposium or training programs.

Awards offered through WTC Utah include individual grants of $2,000 – $3,000 for available activities occurring up until September 30, 2020. Qualified recipients may receive up to $10,000 during a STEP award cycle.

Applications are due Friday, January 24, 2020. To learn more and apply, visit:

We encourage all interested Utah companies to reach out and see how WTC Utah can help you realize your global business potential. We further encourage our network of Utah’s business community to share this opportunity with their own networks. The benefits of utilizing WTC Utah’s resources come largely through engagement with the people, teams and organizations Utah’s thriving business is based on. 

The review process for STEP is highly competitive. Apply today to see what awards your company is eligible for, and continue to follow WTC Utah news as further STEP-related opportunities are announced. 

STEP is funded in part through a Grant with the U.S. Small Business Administration.


Engaging Internationally: Parr Brown Gee & Loveless

With Utah ranking fourth in the nation for export growth, and the horizon for sophisticated international connections growing brighter with each passing day, Utah businesses might think they need to look on the coasts for expert legal counsel on their international issues. 

But as Jonathan O. Hafen, a shareholder at the Salt Lake City-based law firm Parr Brown Gee & Loveless, likes to note, lawyers at his firm have international legal expertise rivaling that of law firms on the coasts – at a fraction of the cost.

“We are a full-service law firm,” he says. “Our lawyers have extensive experience in numerous areas matching the largest law firms in the country. In fact, many of our lawyers started at large firms and chose to relocate to Utah because it is a great place to work and live. And because of the firm’s collegial culture, we are able to easily connect the best legal talent to each client’s situation. This means we match the specific law or industry expertise with the circumstances of our clients. The benefit for clients is a cost-effective, value-driven approach to working out business issues, including international legal issues.”

Parr Brown has a thriving international legal practice with clients in Asia, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, South America, Africa, and Canada. The firm is passionate about international law and helping Utah businesses expand their markets throughout the world. One-third of Parr Brown’s attorneys have lived overseas and speak second languages, including Arabic, Cantonese, Chinese, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Lao, Latin, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, and Thai.

The firm has been partnering with World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) to help Utah businesses with their international pursuits since WTC Utah’s foundational days under the leadership of former CEOs Lew Cramer and Derek Miller. And Parr Brown continues to enjoy a strong partnership with WTC Utah CEO Miles Hansen and the rest of his team. 

“We love WTC Utah, the support it gives to Utah businesses, and the mindset of growing our economy through international trade,” Hafen continues. “And we are always pleased when we can help a Utah business succeed internationally.”

As Hafen’s fellow Parr Brown shareholder Craig Parry points out, “We have helped many businesses throughout Utah expand their markets to reach international buyers and business partners.  As just a few examples of recent successful projects, we assisted a St. George software company to expand its operations into the UK, The Netherlands, Germany, and Switzerland. And we helped a Davis County company qualify for a 40% U.S. tax savings on sales of products to the UAE, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar through a U.S. corporate restructuring.  We also recently helped a Cache Valley high-tech company submit and secure bids for World Bank projects in Nepal and China. And we have helped Utah businesses set up joint venture operations throughout Asia, including China.”

Because of Parr Brown’s international expertise, many of the firm’s Utah clients rely on Parr Brown to take the lead on international issues, regardless of the geographic location. Parry adds that Parr Brown is a founding member of Meritas Law Firms Worldwide – an integrated alliance of more than 170 independent commercial law firms across 60 countries.

As the exclusive member firm in Utah, Parr Brown serves as the gateway to a worldwide legal network, offering clients the bottom-line benefit of coordinating their legal needs across the U.S. or the world, at incredibly competitive rates.

Parr Brown shareholder Jordan Toone adds, “In addition to helping our Utah clients focus on their outward international expansion, we also assist our clients as they partner with inbound foreign investors who want to become a part of Utah’s thriving business community.  These relationships lead to the cross-pollination and continued growth of international business in Utah.”

Hafen says legal expertise is an important feature when selecting a law firm, but how well the knowledge is applied and delivered is where the real value lies. Whether your legal issues arise from an internal shift in strategy, imminent litigation or current economic conditions, Parr Brown applies legal expertise to your critical business concerns. Working closely with clients, the firm creates rock-solid corporate and litigation solutions, based on years of legal and industry experience.

Superior client service is a distinguishing characteristic of Parr Brown. The firm’s focus is to deliver outstanding service, create value, and help clients plan for the future.

“We don’t expect you to fit into a narrowly defined concept of service. Instead, we ask that you help us by expressing your expectations, preferences, and goals so we can deliver the highest level of legal service possible,” Hafen adds.

Salt Lake Chamber Community Partner of the Year: World Trade Center Utah


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