The Logistics of International Business Development

The Logistics of International Business Development

In mid-November CTP’s Director of International Trade, John Saylor, travelled to Hanoi, Vietnam to aid in brokering a deal between a manufacturer here in the U.S. and the Government of Vietnam. We are developing a business relationship with the Vietnamese Defense Ministry and Ministry of Public Security to provide them an internationally patented bi-directional scanners and cameras on a moving vehicle (speeds up to 35 KPH) that rapidly captures, compares and identifies a vehicle’s undercarriage anomalies, identifies vehicle occupants through the facial recognition platform, captures and matches the license plate registration information and then delivers in a high resolution virtual 3D images to security personnel and system users.

John has been working on this project for two years, and the process has been intensive. He had to serve as an intermediary between the manufacturer here in the U.S. and the agency in Hanoi interested in buying the equipment. This involved:

  • Coordinating sales and data with the US manufacturer
  • Identifying end-users in Vietnam
  • Contracting Vietnamese representation
  • Translating marketing materials into Vietnamese
  • Sending proposals to Vietnam
  • Arranging for on-site equipment demonstration
  • Coordinating transport of demonstration equipment to and from Vietnam
  • Overseeing equipment presentation and demonstration
  • Managing travel and lodging logistics for CTP and US manufacturer personnel
  • Follow-up with all participants

In addition to doing logistical work to ensure that the meeting went well, John also needed to manage the complex logistical effort to ensure that the equipment was in full compliance with U.S. export regulations. A member of CTP’s compliance group catalogued each component to be sent to Vietnam and validated that they adhered to U.S. export compliance laws and regulations. This was also to determine whether licenses were needed for the items being shipped, which they were not.

After working on international trade projects like this particular project for over forty years, John had a few points of advice for others regarding this process:

  • Get total input from all parties involved in the project to include any cost sharing
  • Develop an operational plan and assign responsibilities to each party
  • Identify dates and goals to track against progress
  • Pre-negotiate anticipated cost arrangements to mitigate surprises
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