Participating companies will receive complimentary and customized export training and mentoring to tap into new international markets.

Program is bolstered by $150,000 cash prize as Greater Seattle Partners wins Stage Two of the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition.

Seattle, Wash. (September 20, 2023) – Greater Seattle Partners (GSP) today announced the participating companies for the 2023 Greater Seattle Export Accelerator (GSEA) program. 20 innovative companies in Snohomish, King and Pierce County will receive advanced export training, export advising services, and access to international trade opportunities from local, state, and federal international trade and export service providers.

GSP’s award-winning Export Accelerator program will advance equitable investment in STEM/R&D-focused small businesses by identifying market opportunities, assessing finance capabilities, selecting target foreign markets, and addressing supply chain needs. An in-person launch and orientation for Cohort 1 will be held at the Port of Seattle on September 25th.

“GSEA was designed to engage with the broader community to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in the international trade ecosystem. Our goal is to create opportunities that are accessible and inclusive to entrepreneurs from diverse backgrounds, communities and industries who can benefit from exporting. We are absolutely thrilled by an outstanding lineup of innovative companies in this inaugural class, and we look forward to supporting the growth and scale of these small businesses,” said Brian Surratt, chief executive officer of GSP.

“Expanding access to international markets is a fantastic way to help our local businesses grow. I’m excited to see this first cohort work with GSEA and look abroad for new market opportunities for their goods and services. I’m also excited to see our region work together to get behind these companies and future GSEA cohorts and give them the support they need to thrive. Congratulations to the selected participants!” said Markham McIntyre, Director, Seattle Office of Economic Development.”

“GSEA has made great strides in establishing this first cohort of companies, and by winning both stages of the SBA’s 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition. It is great to see our local companies in aerospace and food production participating in the program, and I strongly encourage our small businesses and entrepreneurs to look at future opportunities to take advantage of this regional network of international trade resources to grow their exports,” said Tacoma Mayor Victoria Woodards.

“As someone with experience in exporting, I know the challenges a small business can face with reaching new global markets. I am thrilled to see the depth and diversity of companies participating in this first cohort, and we look forward to providing them with additional resources and connections to remove barriers and advance more equitable international trade,” said Sam Cho, Commissioner, Port of Seattle.

“Engaging in regional initiatives such as GSEA enables small businesses in Snohomish County to tap into a robust network of export advisors spanning both public and private sectors, facilitating their entry into international markets. I look forward to seeing our local companies successfully complete the inaugural cohort, and I encourage them to share their insights with fellow local businesses that stand to gain from this tailored export support,” said Dave Somers, Snohomish County Executive.

Other strategic partners include the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), U.S. Export Assistance Center Seattle, Washington State Department of Commerce, Washington Small Business Development Center (SBDC), and other regional public and private partners.

Finalists were selected through a multi-tier review panel process with experts in international trade, port and terminal management, economic development, business, innovation, and strategic planning both inside and out of city, county and state government. Selected companies had to demonstrate their expertise and unique offerings for exporters.

Companies are representative of industry sectors across aerospace, agritech, biotech, cleantech, food processing and manufacturing. Meet the 20 selected participants:

  1. Bite Me, Inc.:
  2. Black Coffee Northwest:  
  3. Buttonsmith, Inc.:
  4. FIAlab Instruments:
  5. Jacobs Agro:
  6. KLIK:
  7. LiloTree:
  8. Morning Glory Chai:  
  9. OCOchem:
  10. O’dlee Collective:
  11. Pacific Sentry LLC:
  12. Planted Materials:
  13. Rooted Leaf Agritech:
  14. Shoukang Herbal Medicine:
  15. Singletto:
  16. Tolt Technologies LLC:
  17. VH Technologies Ltd:
  18. Vose Technical Systems:
  19. VTeamLabs:  
  20. Whooshh Innovations:

Tapping into the global marketplace represents a significant opportunity for these participating companies. In 2022, total exports from Greater Seattle (Snohomish, King and Pierce County) surpassed $43B, an increase of 13.7% over the following year. Each of our region’s top 10 export markets exceeded $1B in 2022, with China topping the list at more than $10B. In order of total value, Greater Seattle’s top 10 export markets in 2022 were China, Japan, Ireland, Canada, Malaysia, Taiwan, Korea, United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, and Singapore. The region exported to a total of 192 countries in 2022, with 79 countries representing at least $5M worth of goods.

Growth Accelerator Prize Competition

This week the SBA announced GSP as a Stage Two winner for the 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition. GSP will receive a $150,000 cash prize to build strategic partnerships that will support the launch, growth, and scale of STEM/R&D-focused small businesses.

This year’s Competition has brought together organizations, entities, groups, and individuals beyond geographic boundaries to support innovators and innovation needed to confront the challenges of today. After winning a $50,000 Stage One cash prize earlier this year, GSP continues its efforts to foster and facilitate a thriving national ecosystem that advances equitable investment in innovative high-growth small businesses.

For more information about the Growth Accelerator Fund Competition, please visit  

About GSEA

GSEA is a direct result of GSP’s award-winning model for the SBA’s 2023 Growth Accelerator Fund Competition. Participants receive instruction through six export modules that include assessing finance capabilities, selecting target foreign markets, and addressing supply chain needs. For more information visit


Greater Seattle Partners (GSP) is a public-private partnership that leads regional economic development through global business attraction, site selection and investment and trade opportunities in the greater Seattle region. GSP collaborates with community and economic development partners to ensure that every person in the Puget Sound region has the opportunity to prosper. We strive to attract and retain quality family/living wage jobs across all communities of the region. Throughout the world we tell the story of our talent, pioneering spirit, unique communities, and quality of life. For more information visit


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