California Businesses Cannot Afford Another 100 Days Without Ex-Im

Today marks 100 days since Congress allowed the Export-Import (Ex-Im) Bank to expire. Ex-Im’s lapse has made it more difficult for businesses around the country to compete in the international arena, putting thousands of U.S. jobs in jeopardy. Many of these jobs are in the state of California, where the Ex-Im Bank has played a key role in helping companies seize opportunities to grow.

Since 2007 in California, Ex-Im has supported:

  • $23.3 billion in export sales
  • 1,096 companies
  • 149,000 jobs

Please see below for what businesses across the state have been saying about Ex-Im and what a continued lapse means for them.


Don Nelson, Chief Executive Officer, ProGauge Technologies Inc. (Bakersfield, CA)

California Small Business Owner Says Without Ex-Im, His Firm Will No Longer Have Export Capabilities. “‘It’s going to be devastating for us,’ said Don Nelson, chief executive of ProGauge Technologies Inc., a Bakersfield manufacturer of oil industry equipment. ‘Basically, we just won’t be able to export anymore.’” (Jim Puzzanghera, “Export-Import’s cloudy future raises worries of job losses,” Los Angeles Times, 6/26/15)

Kusum Kavia, President, Combustion Associates Inc. (Corona, CA)

Without Ex-Im, “We’ll Be Forced To Consider Layoffs.” “There’s definitely a threat to our current employees, too…If we don’t finalize these contracts, and if we are held back from winning more in the months ahead, and next year starts to look too sparse, we’ll be forced to consider layoffs. I would have to let some of these highly skilled, highly trained individuals go, because there just won’t be enough work…I wish Congress members would come to my office and see what it’s like to have these contracts depending on Ex-Im, to have our employees depending on Ex-Im…Ex-Im is extremely important for our growth, and really, for our survival, and I wish they could see that.” (J.D. Harrison, “Her Small Business was Ready to Hire 100 More People. Then, Ex-Im Expired,” Above The Fold, 8/19/15)

Steve Wilburn, Chief Executive Officer, FirmGreen Inc. (Newport Beach, CA)

FirmGreen CEO Says His Company Has No Alternative To Ex-Im. “They complain that Boeing and other big companies, which receive the largest share of the total funds, use small exporters simply to provide a more sympathetic front. ‘Nobody uses me,’ countered Steven Wilburn, chief executive of FirmGreen Inc., a renewable energy company based in Newport Beach, Calif., with 11 employees. He said he, not Boeing, paid for his three trips to Washington to try to persuade Republicans to support the bank. ‘I’ve begged them,’ Mr. Wilburn said. ”If you have alternative sources of financing, please put them through to my doorstep.”” (Jackie Calmes, “Outlook For The Ex-Im Bank Dims As Congress Departs,” The New York Times, 7/29/15)