California STEP 2018-2019 Export Promotion Concept Submission


The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA), in partnership with the Governor’s Office of Business and Economic Development (GO-Biz), the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office and the California Centers for International Trade Development (CITD), is accepting proposals for the 2018 California State Trade Expansion Program (STEP). STEP funds must support projects that help small businesses enter exporting or expand their exporting activities to additional markets.

Please download and review the 2018 STEP RFP for eligibility requirements and program priorities.


California STEP – 2018-2019 Concepts

Submission of Concepts for California’s 2018-2019 STEP Application – due 18 April 2018, 5:00pm PST.

  • Export Promotion Concept

    Please include in your proposal the following key components of no more than 3 pages or less:
    • Identification and definition of the segment to be served
    • Be sure to include segment characteristics such as: the industry cluster, size (# and dispersion of firms), region, unique firm characteristics, growth and profitability (or potential), pressures on the industry to globalize, and other applicable descriptors.

    • The target market (i.e. country, regional or global)
    • Consideration of US&FCS California Priorities and SBA priorities (See list at end of this request)

    • Description of the market opportunity.
    • What market drivers, conditions or confluence of factors that make this opportunity a good investment for this group. What input has been provided by firms in the market segment your plan to serve that lends credibility to your concept?

    • Type of Activity (based upon list provided below):
    • Foreign trade mission

      Organizing Participation in International Trade Show Exhibitions

    • Proposed export promotion services to be delivered in conjunction with the planned activity (i.e. matchmaking meetings, briefings, design and production of exhibition space, displays, etc., localization activities, and other event supporting promotional campaigns that benefit participating qualified small business exporters, etc).
    • Expected number of Eligible small to medium size exporters whom will participate
    • A list of any contractors, and amounts that will assist in delivering the export promotion activities and continued support.
    • Export outcomes including # of new companies exporting, or value of export transactions that the activity will help support, and method of estimating the export outcomes.
    • An estimated Return on Investment for the project. (Please note that other states are reporting a 30:1 Return on investment)
    • Timeline of Activities
    • Start and End Dates of the Activities (must occur between September 30, 2018 – September 29, 2020)

  • Accepted file types: pdf, doc, docx.

  • Proposed Budget:

  • Use the attached standardized template
  • Proposed Budget

  • Contracts must provide detail about the proposed vendor, the item(s); and the units (i.e. “10 Exhibition spaces for Hannover Messe @ $2,000 per space….etc. to HFUSA); Any proposed travel shall have: #of days, airfare, hotel, and MI&E broken out per traveler at federal per diem rates. Budgets per activity should range between $20,000 and $50,000.
  • The budget must include a breakdown of matching funds equal to 35% of the total project (worksheet). The match must be comprised of not less than 50% cash and not more than 50% of in-kind contributions. Matching funds calculation are as follows:

[(federal funds requested)/.65] – federal funds requested = total matching funds

For example: for $40,000 in federal funds [($40,000)/.65] – $40,000 = 21,538 (total matching funds)

  • For each professional you propose to work on the STEP project, provide their name, resume, job title, job description and compensation and fringe (please use worksheet for compensation). Personnel Compensation This field allows multiple file uploads.
    Drop files here or

    Accepted file types: xlsx, xls, pdf, doc, docx.

    • Provide a signed copy on the donor company/organization’s letterhead that supports the proposed budget

      Drop files here or

      Accepted file types: pdf, xlsx, xls, doc, docx, jpg.

      • Provide evidence that demonstrates your organization has reached out to, sought input and integrated the expertise and/or suggestions from SBA and/or US&FCS. A statement that details the cooperation and/or a copy of relevant correspondence would be acceptable.

        Drop files here or

        Accepted file types: pdf, doc, docx, png, jpg.

        • Submit a statement that addresses the following elements:

          1) Experience in providing export assistance to small businesses, and any trade shows or trade missions you have organized that served specifically small businesses;

          2) Your organization’s experience in contracting with the Federal Government (contracts, grants or cooperative agreements) and 3) the industries and small business groups you target.

        • Contact Information