EcoTech Marine International Inc. of Hanover Township, Lehigh County, has been chosen as Small Business Exporter of the Year by the Small Business Administration’s Philadelphia District Office.
Cora Landis, program director for the International Trade development Program at the Lehigh University Small Business Development Center in Bethlehem, nominated company principals Patrick L. Clasen, director of finance; Justin Lawyer, director of research and development; and Timothy M. Marks, director of manufacturing for the honor.
“I felt they were very worthy,” she said.
She said the honor is significant because EcoTech was named as a winner both for the Philadelphia District and Mid-Atlantic region. That makes the company a contender for national SBA recognition.
Landis said she worked with EcoTech for many years, and that the principals came to the SBC while still college students looking set up their original facility in South Side Bethlehem.
“They jumped into exporting almost right away finding foreign distributors. They recognized the potential of exporting right away,” said Landis.
Today the company, which manufactures aquarium pumps and other products, has distributors around the globe and recently opened an office in Hong Kong.
“Exports really have given them a leg up on a lot of their growth,” said Landis.
EcoTech will be honored at a reception at their facility on June 6, followed by an event at a Philadelphia Phillies game on June 12. By then, Landis said they should know if EcoTech will be nationally recognized.
Another Lehigh Valley firm has also been recognized by the district office.
The Philadelphia District Family-Owned Business of the Year Award will be given to Community Marketing Concepts of Allentown.