Governor’s Missions: Successful Marketing Strategy

VEDP attended the Hannover Messe in Germany this year with partners from Henrico County, Chesterfield County, Hampton Roads Economic Development Authority, Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Greater Richmond Partnership and the Port of Virginia. VEDP attended the Hannover Messe in Germany this year with partners from Henrico County, Chesterfield County, Hampton Roads Economic Development Authority, Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Greater Richmond Partnership and the Port of Virginia.

Governor McAuliffe traveled with VEDP on five productive marketing missions between April and July. Mission trips continue to be a key component in Virginia’s approach to economic development, as they provide excellent opportunities to showcase the Commonwealth and convince corporate leaders to invest in Virginia.


Hannover Messe
Governor McAuliffe and VEDP traveled to Germany in April to attend Hannover Messe, the world’s largest industrial fair. The Virginia delegation met with manufacturing representatives from around the globe to discuss economic development opportunities in the Commonwealth. With the United States participating as a partner country for the first time, Virginia had an exhibit booth in the SelectUSA Pavilion. Over the course of the mission, the Governor and Virginia delegation conducted more than 40 economic development and export promotion meetings throughout Germany and Belgium.

Craft Beer Conference
This past May, VEDP attended the Craft Brewers Conference in Philadelphia, the nation’s largest craft brewery industry gathering. With more than 150 licensed craft breweries, Virginia’s beer industry has thrived since the passing of a 2012 state law that allowed breweries to sell their beer for on-premises consumption. Needless to say, a large number of Virginia breweries, both large and small, were in attendance.

VEDP partnered with Governor McAuliffe to host a Virginia craft beer reception, along with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, our economic development partners and the Commonwealth’s craft brewing community.

Canada & Boston
Governor McAuliffe participated in a four-day marketing mission to Boston, Montreal and Toronto to recruit new businesses and promote Virginia products. The delegation included representatives from VEDP, former Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones, then-Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore, Virginia Tourism Corporation, and the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Over the mission, Governor McAuliffe attended more than 20 meetings and hosted three Virginia receptions to showcase the Commonwealth’s business climate, agricultural assets, culinary offerings and scenic beauty.

Canada is Virginia’s top market in tourism and Virginia’s largest export destination. Canadian companies invested over $150 million and created nearly 800 Virginia jobs between 2011 and 2015.

BIO Convention
The Biotechnology Innovation Organization named Governor McAuliffe the 2016 Governor of the Year in recognition of his leadership and commitment to strengthening the biosciences industry within Virginia. The Governor accepted the award at the 2016 BIO International Convention in San Francisco.

BIO is the world’s largest trade association, which represents biotech companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations around the U.S. and in over 30 countries. The biotech sector has played a key role in the Governor’s plan to grow and diversify the economy. The Commonwealth has expanded to over 200 biotech companies and fostered strong workforce development programs through a network of university research parks across Virginia.

Israel & Farnborough
Governor McAuliffe topped off a busy travel season by heading to Israel and the United Kingdom in July for a marketing and trade mission. The delegation included former Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones, then-Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Todd Haymore, VEDP, Virginia Department of Agricultural and Consumer Services, the Virginia Tourism Corporation, and Virginia Israel Advisory Board.

Governor McAuliffe hosted two receptions and attended over 50 meetings to promote Virginia goods and services, as well as the state’s tourism attributes. Outside of London, the delegation attended the Farnborough International Airshow, where the Governor hosted an executive roundtable, in partnership with the Aerospace Industries Association, to promote the Commonwealth’s aerospace industry. While at the airshow, Governor McAuliffe also announced that Overfinch, the world’s leading creator of bespoke Range Rover vehicles, would invest $1.82 million and create 41 new jobs in Danville.