KANSAS CITY, MO – U.S. Under Secretary of Commerce for International Trade Gilbert B. Kaplan recently awarded Topps Products Inc. of Stilwell, Kansas, with The Export Achievement Certificate for successfully entering a new international marketplace. 

The presentation took place during the Department of Commerce’s Discover Global Markets Forum: Design + Construct, at the InterContinental Hotel at the Plaza, April 30-May 2, 2018. 

In early 2015, Topps’ Vice President of International Sales and Business Development, James Thomas, contacted the U.S. Commercial Service for assistance with opening export sales to South Africa.

The initial response of South Africa Commercial Specialist Jaisvir Sewpaul was that the competition against Topps Products was strong in South Africa, and there were comparable products and manufacturers in the market.

Topps elected to take on this challenging market and compete based upon confidence of their product’s superior characteristics.

Working with the Commercial Service Kansas City, Topps contracted both Gold Key (GKS) and Single Company Promotion (SCP) services in South Africa. The GKS was conducted in May 2015 resulting with Topps’ signing a master distributor identified through the service and with an initial $115,000 purchase of products. Together with its new partner, in March 2016, Topps’ followed the GKS with a successful SCP in Johannesburg, South Africa, to help launch Topps’ products.  Topps conducted approximately $500,000 of exports to the South African market in just the 2+ years that followed.