WebPort Global, a new online connectivity tool for small and medium sized businesses

WebPort Global, a new online connectivity tool for small and medium sized businessesWhat is the name of your business and URL? www.webportglobal.com

A brief synopsis of the website / application (explain it to a 5 year old)?

WebPort Global is a new and exciting online trade network created for companies and members of World Trade Centers, Chambers of Commerce, Professional Associations, and any organization that participates in or supports importing and exporting. WebPort Global is particularly focused on helping Small and Medium Enterprises grow by bringing together vast global resources, people, information and a set of easy-to use tools to one integrated platform while staying connected to their own trade organization.

On a single platform, WebPort Global brings together these organizations, their members and a broad range of support organizations that make-up the Small and Medium Enterprise global trade mosaic.

The value of WebPort Global’s technology-supported community comes from the professionals around the globe who provide aggregated information, help each other and share experiences across organizations and companies.

With WebPort Global, each company participates in the global community through their respective sponsoring organization, with other members and experts. Each organization maintains its own identity and direct connection to its membership. By being connected globally, these organizations can better help their members and strengthen their role as global partners.

Vetted members can connect and work with each other, choose to receive notifications for related content, events, other members and marketplace listings. They can post their own marketplace listings and even search for suppliers and customers in a structured database with details for millions of companies. WebPort Global helps SMEs find customers and suppliers from all over the world through a trusted and easy-to-use platform.

WPG has been implemented through partners in over sixty countries throughout the world. The basis for a comprehensive and extensive MARKETPLACE is established. Partners and members can make connections, source content and most important buy and sell in a global marketplace.

WebPort Global governance, partner selection and services enable Small and Medium Enterprises to engage in global trade activities with confidence. SMEs become part of a trusted community rich in resources and prestige.

A broad range of relevant content from some of the world’s leading trade organizations authorities, most active agencies and knowledgeable users is available for members to share through WPG’s KNOWLEDGE Center.

Functionality for broader publication of MARKETPLACE listings has been added. Members can have their Product and Service Listing visibility beyond the private community. Members who wish to keep their listing visible only to WPG Members can continue to do so. Enhancements of this functionality includes optional extended distribution of EVENTS, external featuring of PARTNERS and other selected content. The result of this feature will be to provide more exposure for products, events and information that WPG members wish to publicize.

WebPort Global has entered into a partnership with a Leading Trade Intelligence Provider in the world; a joint announcement between WPG & our Partner is forthcoming. WPG members will be able to search import and export information to find suppliers and customers. These services are used by the world’s largest companies and typically are cost prohibitive for most SMEs. WPG Members will have access to information for millions of companies around the world.

WebPort Global has implemented Dun & Bradstreet® vetting as one of its programs to maintain a trusted environment for its members. WPG Members will soon have the opportunity to generate their own Dun & Bradstreet® reports based on their unique requirements.

Group Forums/Discussions enable Organizations and members to work more closely together even though they may be in different locations around the world

WPG Development continually enhances the platform based on member feedback and new functionality requirements.

Why did you start this company?

While helping companies find customers and suppliers through our own World Trade Centers, we learned that when contemplating opportunities to grow their business, Small and Medium Sized Enterprises are often intimidated by the real and perceived difficulty of trading beyond their borders. SMEs require a high degree of trust and familiarity to take the steps necessary to engage globally. Through WebPort Global, SMEs can manage the process by meeting experts and other business professionals of interest, learning what they need to know to increase their confidence levels, and buy and sell through the trusted environment. In the majority of situations, SMEs join WebPort Global through and remain connected with an organization where they already know other members, like a Chamber of Commerce or World Trade Center. Small and Medium Enterprises are an underserved and untapped source for exports globally. WebPort Global hopes to provide the platform to accelerate their role in import/export globally.

Was your company started on a shoestring budget or funded?

Since its inception, WebPort Global has been funded by its parent company, The Drew Company.

Who is your competition, and what do you do better?

There are a number of websites and services that are known for their specific or niche offerings like business social networking, online learning and information, or online B2B marketplaces. WebPort Global has succeeded in delivering an integrated platform with productivity tools that address the complete business cycle of global trade (versus point-solutions) including but not limited to learning, connecting/collaborating, and trading. By including familiar and trusted partners like Trade Centers, WebPort Global provides access to trade experts that the other ‘technology only’ solutions cannot provide. WebPort Global’s vetting process, freshness policies for content and listings and access to trade information for millions of companies distinguishes it the ‘go-to’ place for SMEs who wish to import/export.

Why would a small business, entrepreneur, freelancer, etc use your product?

WebPort Global is the fastest, most effective and most economical way to participate in global trade for a Small and Medium Enterprise. For less than $1 per day, an SME can instantly have access to thousands of leads, connect with a Far East shipping expert, find a manufacturer, see who needs their product, attend a focused seminar and much more. They can do this through their existing Trade organization or independently.

How could you effectively use these tools? A short bio of your company (max 200 words)

WPG is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Drew Company, a privately held, Boston-based holding and Investment Company founded in 1982 by John Drew. Best known for its deep experience in real estate development, management and consulting, the Drew Company currently oversees a broad range of ventures, spanning real estate, hospitality, technology, and entrepreneurial investment.

Among the Drew Company’s hallmark projects are the Seaport Hotel and Seaport World Trade Center, an office, hotel and convention complex on the Boston waterfront, and the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C., which the firm manages on behalf of the US Government. More recent initiatives include the launching of a World Trade Center in Dublin, Ireland, and WebPort Global.

The WebPort Global software application was conceived of and built as a customizable software platform that supports the creation and management of trusted professional relationships, collaboration with colleagues globally, and the ability to find and share advice, expertise and information. Carefully developed, using input and advice from technology industry leaders including Cisco, eircom, Microsoft, mindSHIFT and Avaya, the application has evolved into an all-encompassing technology tool to benefit organizations. It is designed to improve internal and external marketing and communications; provide a centralized location for project planning meetings, documents, tasks, and business knowledge; and a means for small to medium-sized companies to conduct business in a shared marketplace.

Do you offer free online or offline tools?

WebPort Global is a subscription service, but offers a free 30-day trial to new Users.

Are there different pricing levels?

Yes, there are monthly and annual subscription options, block purchase opportunities and a number of partner programs..

Do you have a blog that keeps users updated?

WebPort Global publishes a blog and will soon integrate with many of the popular social media tools.

Facebook, twitter, LinkedIn or ? Provide exact URL of each

Twitter: https://twitter.com/webport_global

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/WebPort-Global/218766981576760

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=185378012&trk=tab_pro (Profile Name: WebPort Global)

How long have you been in business?

Since 2010

Number of current users? Estimated yearly growth?

WebPort Global will have 10,000 users by the end of this year. Participation increases daily.

How do you see your company in the next 2-5 years (more products or services?)

We are continually enhancing the technology while growing partnerships to increase relevant connections and data. Additionally, we are actively promoting our users but internally though the environment and externally thought social media and other networking tools.

How many employees do you currently have working with you and/or freelance contractors?

Today there are 20 employees.

Are you looking to hire more people or contractors? If so, what positions and skills are you looking for?

We will continue to hire developers and customer service agents.

What other web based products would you recommend to entrepreneurs, business owners, or freelancers?

There are many such as Sphere Access that make sense for young companies looking to grow their product sales.

Any Patents Pending? No

About US

WPG is a wholly owned subsidiary of The Drew Company, a privately held, Boston-based holding and Investment Company founded in 1982 by John Drew. Best known for its deep experience in real estate development, management and consulting, the Drew Company currently oversees a broad range of ventures, spanning real estate, hospitality, technology, and entrepreneurial investment.

Among the Drew Company’s hallmark projects are the Seaport Hotel and Seaport World Trade Center, an office, hotel and convention complex on the Boston waterfront, and the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C., which the firm manages on behalf of the US Government. More recent initiatives include the launching of a World Trade Center in Dublin, Ireland, and WebPort Global.

WebPort Global software application enables companies and members of World Trade Centers, Chambers of Commerce, Professional Associations, and any organization that participates in or supports importing and exporting. WebPort Global subscribers can create and manage trusted professional relationships, collaborate with colleagues globally, find and share advice, expertise and information around global trade.

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