A trade mission for California green building companies to Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro in September is being organized by the California Centers for International Trade Development (CITD) in collaboration with the U.S. Small Business Administration.

Richard Soyombo, Bay Area executive director of international trade development for CITD based at Skyline College in San Bruno, says the trade mission will be in conjunction with the GreenBuilding Brasil 2012 conference and trade show in Sao Paulo Sept. 11-13. He says he’s seeking A/E/C firms to participate in the mission in order to introduce themselves to the “booming” Brazilian green build market.

Opportunities in the Brazil market will heat up over the next five years as the country hosts the UN Earth Summit, FIFA World Cup and the Summer Olympics in 2016 in Rio.

Soyombo says the Bay Area CITD, one of 14 centers statewide, will host a California pavilion at the trade show, funded by a recently awarded California State Trade and Export Promotion (STEP) grant. The SBA supplies the grants, which will, in this case, apply to “increasing the value of exports for small businesses, removing export barriers to small businesses and increasing the number of small businesses in California that export,” according to STEP. (California this year received $2.5 million in STEP funds via the federal SBA.)

Trade mission objectives include introducing green companies to business marketing opportunities, one-on-one match-making meetings with Brazilian companies, one-on-one match-making with U.S. Department of Commerce green construction specialists, business meetings with pre-qualified partners in both cities and access to the California trade show pavilion.

Soyombo says the target participants will come from design companies and architects, construction companies, landscape architects, consultants/service providers, civil/structural engineering companies, renewable energy companies, lighting companies, roofing material manufacturers/representatives, training providers/instructors and financiers/investors.

Organizers will hold a briefing on the trade mission on May 9, 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. at the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce boardroom, 350 S. Bixel Ave. A fee of $25 includes breakfast. To attend, contact Terri Batch, U.S. DOC at

According to the CITD website, the CITD was established in 1989 and is funded by the Chancellor’s Office of the State of California to “promote the state’s international trade and competitiveness, assist exporters and importers, and advance economic and job growth.” All CITD services are either free or low cost.  

For more information about the trade mission, contact Allison Mello at