2017 is in the books and was, by many accounts, a tumultuous year for the world. President Trump began his presidency that continues to transform world politics, the U.K. triggered Article 50 to begin the Brexit process, Mohammad bin Salam in Saudi Arabia is reshaping the Middle East, there is saber-rattling on the Korean Peninsula, and I have not even mentioned China.
Every corner of the world is experiencing a level and a speed of change and transition that we typically only see in wartime. There was also that solar eclipse in North America. How cool was that?
The evolution in business is happening just as fast with the advent of e-commerce vs. brick and mortar, Bitcoin and blockchain technology, the growing movement of electric cars and semi's, autonomous vehicles, energy advancements, and green tech.
The way we make products are changing, and perhaps more importantly, the way we buy and consume those products is changing.
Our business here at Tradewin is evolving just as fast. Faster if I'm doing my job right. 2017 will go down in Tradewin’s history as an important pivotal point, where we had some of our most significant expansion in services and geographic coverage.
We added staff and expertise throughout Asia in Shanghai, Shenzhen, Hong Kong, Korea, Singapore, and Thailand. We added staff throughout the EU, particularly in France, and grew our existing teams in North America. This growth is a function of our customers' needs and asks, and it feels great to be able to fill those needs.
The consequences of major global events are not always immediately felt or experienced by the general public, however, those of us that work in the trenches of international trade are tasked with making sense of the chaos.
New trade agreements, regulatory changes, and increased sanctions offer new opportunities as well as risks to the business. Our job, in its simplest form, is to provide experience and knowledge to help companies continue to evolve and grow as the world around us changes.
In that regard, 2017 was a great year, and I am very much looking forward to the future.