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 PEARL RIVER, N.Y., Oct. 19 /PRNewswire/ -- As a result of a series of meetings held in Bogota and Medellin, Colombia, in August, Alan Elkin, chief executive officer of Active International, announced today that the company has arranged a number of barter transactions with key Colombian firms, thereby opening the door to an exciting future of trade relations between nations. He stated, "We are pleased to welcome these firms, which represent important Colombian industries, to the Active organization. We anticipate a mutually beneficial economic climate for all parties involved."
 Representatives of a dozen major Colombian firms attended a luncheon on Aug. 24, 1993, at the Club Union in Medellin to consider pursuing barter transactions for their companies. The meeting took place under the auspices of Active International's Active Media Services Division. Among the companies represented were Colteger, Productos Noel, Fabricato, Almacenes Ley, Nacional de Chocolates, Fabrica de Licores de Antioquia, and Cadenelco. Colombia's industrial sector was represented by food, footwear and textiles manufacturing companies. A representative of a large chain of consumer products as well as representatives of local government were also present.
 Interest in Active's barter programs was very high. The Colombian government and hotel owners present at the luncheon expressed great interest in advertising in the United States in order to promote tourism. They committed to pay for a significant portion of the advertising bill by providing hotel rooms that Active will in turn trade to businesses in the United States. Almacenes Exito, the largest chain of stores in Colombia, showed tremendous interest in retail marketing of U.S. products. And the representatives of Fabricato, Colombia's second-largest textile manufacturer, attended a second meeting with Active representatives, where they expressed their desire for a limited advertising and marketing campaign to promote their products in the United States.
 Active Media Services executives who attended the luncheon included Anthony Fiore, senior vice president, sales and marketing; and Pablo Diaz, vice president, international sales. Both Fiore and Diaz were very enthusiastic about the negotiations that occurred in Medellin during these meetings. Fiore stated, "Because Colombia's economy is developing so rapidly we encountered tremendous interest in Active's programs." Diaz agreed. He noted: "Colombia's business climate is currently favorable. Consequently, the country's tourist officials and hotel owners want to change the image of Colombia in the United States."
 In 1992, Colombia's stock market took first place for the best performance of the "Emerging Markets," followed by Mexico and India. Colombia is the only South American country that has not experienced a single year of negative GNP or declining per capita income since 1980. In 1992, U.S. exports to Colombia increased by a whopping 68.8 percent -- to $43.5 billion. Currently, there is a clear and growing demand in Colombia for high-quality merchandise from the United States.
 Several meetings between Active and the Colombian business community took place in Bogota on Aug. 25. One meeting was attended by financial representatives of Organizacion Ardila Lulle, the largest industrial conglomerate in Colombia, and owners of RCN (Radio Cadena Naciona), a network of 700 radio stations and a TV station. At another meeting, Cotelco (Colombian Hotels) was present, and at a third meeting, the Federation of Cocoa Producers indicated their interest in becoming trading partners with Active.
 In summarizing Active's recent activities in Colombia, Elkin stated: "Barter is a rapidly growing alternative to traditional marketing and trading programs, because it puts excess inventory to good use, provides purchasing leverage, and opens new markets. The Active organization is extremely capable and versatile, and we are ready to create customized barter packages for the full range of Colombian business interests. One trade strategy might be for Active to supply U.S. products on an ongoing basis to department stores in Colombia in exchange for cash or countertrade."
 Another round of meetings in Colombia, at which Active will feature a one-hour presentation in Spanish for Colombian Hotels, is scheduled to take place in Medellin on Sept. 23.
 Active International, an international trading company with offices in New York, Toronto, London, Budapest and Mexico, has plans to open a new office in Paris. For more information on Active's role in the barter industry and the latest news on the Colombian Trade Agreements, write to Active International, One Blue Hill Plaza, Pearl River, NY 10965-8705 or call 914-735-1700.
 -0- 10/19/93
 /CONTACT: Norma A. Lee, 212-221-0410/

CO: Active International ST: New York IN: SU:

GK-TW -- NY065 -- 4075 10/19/93 14:44 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Oct 19, 1993

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