Mason Enterprise Center Helps Chilean Company Enter U.S. Market

Posted: July 23, 2008 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By James Greif

The Mason Enterprise Center (MEC), part of the School of Public Policy, has helped Chilean educational technology company i-Education Holdings Inc. enter the U.S. business market through the MEC’s International Business Accelerator (IBA) program.

After completing the three-month IBA program, i-Education Holdings achieved its mission of addressing the learning needs of Hispanic students in the United States. The company introduced MiClase, a digital learning software package designed for classrooms and computer labs, to the local market as a result of the relationships developed through the IBA program.

U.S.-based government institutions and education companies are now using MiClase to boost student test scores in math and science.

The IBA program integrates concepts of innovation and entrepreneurship to assist non-U.S. companies in partnering with U.S. firms for new business relationships. The program also stimulates regional development and increases the success rate of non-U.S. companies entering the North American market.

“Our IBA program worked with i-Education Holdings to present them with a comprehensive introduction to the U.S. marketplace,” says Marshall Ferrin, director of international business development at the Mason Enterprise Center.

“Drawing upon the expertise of the IBA leadership, we matched i-Education Holdings with qualified U.S. businesses and also provided them with insight into American business practices that would help them interact with potential clients.”

“The International Business Accelerator at the Mason Enterprise Center provided us a soft landing in the U.S. business environment,” says Gilbert E. Leiva, president and CEO of i-Education Holdings. “It was the difference between a high-risk and an acceptable-risk operation in our decision to enter the U.S. market with our technology.”

Along with U.S. partner Distinct Studios, a company based in the MEC, i-Education Holdings recently received a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services award in recognition of outstanding performance in the delivery of government contracting services.

The IBA program has provided business development support to 18 other companies based in Romania, Brazil, Russia, Japan, Sweden, Finland and Israel and assisted them in a smooth transition to the U.S. market.

The International Business Accelerator program establishes new investments in Northern Virginia and has a network of economic development partners in Finland, Sweden, the United Kingdom and other countries.

All of the companies that have completed the program have successfully entered the U.S. business market. With the support of the Virginia Small Business Administration, Cooley Godward Kronish and the Northern Virginia Technology Council, the IBA continues to broaden its global network and to bring innovative products and services to the United States.

For more information, contact Ferrin at 703-362-1464 or e-mail mferrin@gmu.edu.

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