Secretary of Commerce to head up Rhode Island trade mission to Yorkshire & Humber

Stefan Pryor, Secretary of Commerce for the State of Rhode Island

It has been confirmed that Stefan Pryor, Secretary of Commerce for the State of Rhode Island, will head up a trade mission comprising seven US businesses and a team of commerce and tourism officials which is set to visit the UK in September with Leeds and Hull named among the key target cities.

Visiting the ‘Northern Powerhouse’ cities of Leeds, Hull and Manchester as well as Edinburgh, the mission will see Rhode Island firms meet with UK business leaders with the aim of growing exports between the state and the North of England and Scotland.

Secretary Pryor and his team will be talking to UK businesses about the latest incentives and support available for British companies planning to set up an operation in Rhode Island, which is increasingly being seen by UK businesses as a first landing place in the US.

The trade mission, which has been organised by the Chafee Centre for International Business at Bryant University, Rhode Island Commerce Corporation and the US Department of Commerce, will bring together Rhode Island businesses offering unique products and services with potential UK resellers, agents and distributors as well as seeking suppliers and customers.

Stefan Pryor said: “More and more, international companies are realising the benefits of doing business in Rhode Island – including our competitive tax structure, potent economic development tools, and high quality of life.

“Companies with UK roots, including Finlays and Virgin Pulse, have chosen to plant their flag in our state, and we look forward to exploring opportunities with other companies that are looking to expand in America.”

As part of the visit, the delegation will meet with seasoned and potential Yorkshire and Humber exporters involved in ExportExchange, the peer-to-peer mentoring initiative aimed at supporting overseas trade in the Leeds City Region, and leaders in fintech and medtech industries where Rhode Island has a strong and growing sector that mirrors that of the North of England.

The visit builds upon a trip from Boston and New England to Leeds in 2016 when business leaders met with leading firms and civic leaders in the region for the first time, and which highlighted the similarities between the two economies and strengthened the ambition to do business together.

US firms on the mission seeking to make contact with potential customers and suppliers, as well as exploring joint venture opportunities, include: environment monitoring specialist AVTECH Software ; Bryant University’s John H. Chaffee Center for International Business; intellectual property law specialist Feeney Law which has built a network of UK lawyers based in London and Leeds; sea floor mapping company Inspire Environmental; precision component manufacturer Mearthane Products Corporation (MPC); StormTree which designs and installs flood water management systems; coffee-roasters Queen Bean Coffee Company; and VPI  Logistics which provides a comprehensive distribution service.

The trade mission will be in Leeds on September 18 and 19 and firms interested in meeting with the delegation can contact the mission organiser Paul Snape via email at


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.