Governor Eric J. Holcomb and First Lady Janet Holcomb will depart for Europe on Friday, marking his sixth international economic development trip as governor. The governor will meet with government, business and adademic stakeholders in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Switzerland, Austria, Germany and France prior to delivering the Indy 500 green flag to Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Delta Air Lines’ (NYSE: DAL) inaugural flight from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) to the Indianapolis International Airport (IND) on Delta Flight 501.
The governor and the delegation will meet with U.S. Ambassador to the Czech Republic Stephen B. King in Prague to discuss Indiana’s global economy and opportunities to strengthen international ties with government leadership.
On Monday, the Indiana delegation will meet with U.S. and Slovakian government officials in Bratislava, including President Andrej Kiska, Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini, Minister of Defence Peter Gajdoš and U.S. Ambassador to Slovakia Adam Sterling, and will host a business roundtable with the American Chamber of Commerce (AmCham) Slovakia to promote Indiana as an ideal destination to Slovakian businesses interested in expanding to the United States.
Indiana and Slovakia have established strong ties through defense and educational collaboration. The Indiana National Guard has served as the partner unit of Slovakia’s armed forces within the National Guard’s State Partnership Program since 1994, and both Indiana University and Purdue University have connections to educational institutions in Slovakia. This year, Slovakia celebrates its 100th year of independence.
On Tuesday, the governor, secretary of commerce and legislative leadership will meet with Indiana’s largest Swiss companies, visiting the Nestle headquarters in Vevey and the Roche headquarters in Basel.
The group will also meet with a Swiss prospect considering investing in Indiana and will host a business luncheon with the U.S. Embassy in Bern with executives of both Indiana companies operating in Switzerland and Swiss companies operating in Indiana.
On Tuesday, First Lady Holcomb will join Mrs. Bosma and Mrs. Long to meet with executives of Fronius International at the company’s headquarters in Pettenbach. Fronius International, which specializes in welding, charging and solar energy technology, has 28 subsidiaries on four continents and operates its U.S. headquarters in Portage, Indiana.
On Wednesday, the governor and the delegation will meet with government officials in Vienna to discuss economic collaboration between Indiana and Austria. Indiana is home to nine Austria-based business establishments, including Danzer North America, Emarsys North America, Fronius USA, Red Bull Distribution and Voestalpine. The delegation will also meet with new Austrian firms interested in expanding their operations at a breakfast reception with the Austrian Federal Economic Chamber (WKO).
On Wednesday, the Indiana delegation will travel to Germany, which is one of the state’s largest foreign investors. German companies operate 121 business establishments – second only to Japan – that support more than 14,800 Hoosier jobs across the state. That evening, the delegation will host a Friends of Indiana reception in Berlin to convene executives of German companies with Indiana operations, Indiana companies with operations in Germany, and global firms with ties to both Indiana and Germany.
On Thursday, Gov. Holcomb and Secretary Schellinger will meet with government officials, including German State Secretary Walter Lindner, and business prospects currently in negotiations to locate in Indiana. Speaker Bosma, Sen. Long and First Lady Holcomb will spend the day focused on workforce development initiatives, meeting with representatives from the Berlin Chamber of Commerce and Indiana University’s Global Gateway Network. The group will also visit with local businesses to share thoughts on best practices related to dual education systems and workforce training initiatives.
The delegation will also host a business luncheon with AmCham Germany, convening global executives and sharing Indiana’s story as a state that works for business.
On Friday, the governor and the delegation will celebrate the state’s first year-round, nonstop transatlantic flight, marking an important milestone that will increase connectivity for businesses, residents and visitors. The delegation will travel from Berlin to Paris, utilizing one of the more than 75 global connections available from Delta Air Lines (NYSE: DAL) and its joint venture partner Air France/KLM, prior to taking the inaugural trip from Paris Charles de Gaulle Airport (CDG) to the Indianapolis International Airport (IND) joined by the Consul General of France in Chicago Guillaume Lacroix.
This is Gov. Holcomb’s sixth international economic development trip as governor, following strategic missions to Canada and Israel earlier this year. The costs of the state delegation are being paid through private donations to the Indiana Economic Development Foundation.