HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - We’re saying bon voyage as a group of officials from North Alabama leaves for Paris for important economic talks.
They’re meeting with industries in an effort to bring more growth to the Tennessee Valley.
Jana Kuner, public relations manager with the Port of Huntsville, is excited about the connections she’s looking to make on a trip overseas to the Paris Air Show, the world's largest event dedicated to the aviation and space industry.
She’s one of 20 people from north Alabama making the trip and they have a very full schedule.
“It’s an economic development initiative to talk to new industry and help them understand what Alabama has to offer and hopefully bring those new businesses to this area. We typically have between 35-50 meetings. We’re pretty full right now. We work with the Department of Commerce and the state. We’ve partnered with them on their booth to do some meetings,” Kuner said.
The delegation includes leaders from the Huntsville-Madison County Chamber of Commerce, TVA, UAH, Huntsville airport and the City of Huntsville, including Mayor Tommy Battle.
“We have a lot of companies located here, but their headquarters are somewhere else so at these meetings, we get to sit down with the people who are at the very top level. So some of it is meeting with companies that are here and some of it is sitting down with companies we’re trying to lure to come here and get them into the Huntsville family. It’s an industrial recruitment trip,” Mayor Battle stated.
North Alabama leaders will be meeting with aerospace companies, airlines and technology groups, as well as contractors and suppliers who support those industries.
“It’s networking and building those connections and just continuing to grow. In the past from the Paris Air Show, our air cargo partner that’s here on site at the Port of Huntsville has seen exponential growth. They’ve grown their entire network not just here in the U.S. but internationally as a result of meetings that took place at the Paris Air Show. So we know we get results and that’s what we want, more results,” Kuner added.
The 53rd International Paris Air Show will take place from June 17- 23 at the Exhibition Center of Le Bourget, a few kilometers north of Paris
The Paris Air Show is the largest aerospace-industry exhibition type Air Show in the world, measured by number of exhibitors and size of exhibit space.