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Utah Pavilion Trade Show Exhibitor
Matching Grants

Download and share the Utah STEP 2016-2017 Brochure


Exhibiting at international trade shows has proven very successful for previous STEP matching grant recipients and is an excellent way to find customers to help your business grow. According to a study conducted by the Center for Exhibition Industry Research (CEIR) and published on the Entrepreneur Magazine website, 86 percent of show attendees were the decision-maker or influenced buying decisions, yet 85 percent had not been called on by a salesperson before the show.

Entrepreneur Magazine also explains that trade shows are economical ways of getting sales. The CEIR reports that closing a sale that begins with contact at a trade show runs about half the cost of closing a sale that doesn’t have the exhibition advantage: $550 and 1.4 sales calls compared to $997 and 3.6 sales calls.

Opportunities are being offered for a select number of small businesses to exhibit their products in the Utah Pavilion at trade shows that support small businesses within four of Utah’s economic clusters: life sciences; information technology and software development; aerospace and defense; and outdoor products. Small businesses selected to exhibit in the Utah Pavilion will have a qualifying product or service. They will be expected to pay for their own travel expenses and fair exhibitor fees (typically $1,500 or less.) These expenses paid by the recipient shall be considered their cash match. The grant award shall be in the form of the Utah Pavilion itself and the costs associated with securing exhibitor space. It’s anticipated that 4 small businesses will exhibit within the Utah Pavilion at each of the trade shows; however, this is subject to change.

During the months preceding the trade show, those small businesses selected to participate will receive advance planning guidance to help make their experience at the trade show as productive as possible. Mentoring will also be provided to each participant during the trade show. Participants will be expected to hold business-to-business meetings with potential clients during the trade show. These meetings will be coordinated before the trade show, to the extent possible, in cooperation with the Utah Export Assistance Center.

Selected participants will demonstrate the ability to make sales at the trade show and meet STEP Project return-on-investment (ROI) expectations as shown on the table below. Participants will report sales related to the trade show to the STEP Project Director on a quarterly basis for 3 years following the trade show.

Eligible small businesses must meet the following criteria in order to be considered to receive a matching grant.

  1. Meet SBA size standards
  2. Is not barred from federal funds
  3. Is an Eligible Small Business Concern
  4. Has been in business for more than one year
  5. Is operating profitably in the U.S. for the past fiscal year
  6. Is headquartered in Utah
  7. Is a for-profit company
  8. Has 3 or more full-time employees
  9. Has a finished product or qualifying service with at least 51% U.S. content
  10. Has an export plan
  11. Scored higher than 66 on the Export Readiness Questionnaire

Ineligible small businesses are one of the following:

  1. Consulting agencies
  2. Law firms
  3. Real estate developers
  4. Retail businesses
  5. Hospitality or tourism operators
  6. Distributors representing clients
  7. Educational institutions or for-profit schools recruiting students
  8. Non-profit organizations
  9. Companies, organizations or individuals recruiting foreign direct investment
  10. Multi-level marketing (MLM) or network marketing companies

Sales Expectations

Small Business Type 3-5 Year Projected Sales
New-to-Export US$ 300,000
New-to-Market US$ 900,000

Trade Shows

Economic Cluster Trade Show 2017 Date Location
Life Sciences Korea International Medical & Hospital Equipment Mar 16-19 Seoul, South Korea
Outdoor Products Taipei Cycle Show Mar 22-25 Taipei, Taiwan
Aerospace & Defense Defense & Security Equipment International Sep 12-15 London, United Kingdom




Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.