June 27, 2024

Center for Global Business Extends Focus to Economy-Boosting Foreign Investment in Maryland

Amid high-level recognition for supporting U.S. export activity, the Center for Global Business (CGB) at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business is further focusing its resources to draw foreign business to Maryland to support the state economy.

CGB launched its new U.S. Market Entry Consulting Program in spring 2024. A pilot cohort of Smith student consultants worked with Taiwan’s Lydsec Digital Technology Co., in bringing its Keypasco multi-factor authentication software into a “space that is incredibly competitive but growing rapidly both in market size and in importance,” according to the Smith team’s proposal.

Executing the Keypasco work were Smith MBAs Stephen Alexander and Shubhant Gupta and MS students Tanvi Murumkar (business analytics), Tripatjot Saggu (information systems) and Abhinav Gurunsankar (supply chain). Guided by Smith faculty experts, the students in the process collaborated with the Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation – another component of the foreign direct investment (FDI) ecosystem under the Maryland Department of Commerce.

Prospective foreign direct investors gathered at the Hall CP in UMD’s Discovery District to hear remarks from Smith Center for Global Business Executive Director Rebecca Bellinger, UMD’s Innovation and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Catalyst Sammy Popat, and representatives of the Maryland Department of Commerce. The program was part of the June 22-26 SelectUSA Investment Summit.

Central, here, is the Maryland Global Gateway Soft Landing Program helping international companies affordably test out the U.S. market with access to facilities, resources, advisors and more. “These are small-to-medium-size firms trying to get established. And our students utilizing Smith School resources including high-level faculty experts and research can both help these companies and demonstrate their value proposition to this market,” says CGB Executive Director Rebecca Bellinger. “That’s where our students excel. We’re filling a gap and supporting this state initiative at the same time.”

With the center preparing its fall 2024 edition of the program, CGB leadership engaged with UMD-visiting foreign businesses taking part in the late-June SELECTUSA Investment Summit at National Harbor to promote foreign direct investment.

This “Maryland Spinoff” component provided for an introduction of the new CGB program to company leaders visiting and learning about UMD-wide resources associated with the likes of the Discovery District and Startup UMD. “Being able to meet in person with prospective investors and showcasing all that campus and the U.S. Market Entry Program has to offer goes a long way in demonstrating how Maryland is the right landing spot for foreign companies looking to the U.S. market,” Bellinger says.

She further notes a common denominator to CGB’s long-standing work with U.S. exporters and now with foreign firms: “The U.S. Department of Commerce (via the President’s E Award) last March recognized our uniquely simultaneous support of both economic and student-career development. We're applying this model now to foreign direct investment in Maryland.”

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About the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business

The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 12 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and flex MBA, executive MBA, online MBA, business master’s, PhD and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.

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