About Us

The Getting to Global Initiative (GtG) is a transformational public/private partnership that brings together industry experts, business leaders and government officials to empower small- and medium-sized companies to sell more online, overseas.

This industry-owned and operated website forms part of the broader Getting to Global initiative. GtG and its partners host live global ecommerce training events around the globe and publish weekly video interviews and blog posts capturing straight-talking insights and best-practices in online global strategy from leading retailers, branded suppliers and industry experts. GtG also curates a growing portfolio of global ecommerce coursework, export tools, a service provider list and government services.

The Foundation for American Science and Technology (FAST) working together with organizations such as the Global Retail Insights Network (The GRIN Labs), the Centers for International Trade and Development (CITD) Los Angeles, and a growing number of partner associations, companies and government agencies, will help facilitate the ease at which retailers, branded suppliers and software companies are able to sell and export their commodities and services online, and foster job creation in the U.S.

As part of this work, FAST is partnered with government agencies to profile export-focused content for this initiative and will profile this content along with other content in this private sector website. This website contains content generated by the Grin Labs and/or FAST that goes beyond the content produced in collaboration with the U.S. Government. It is important to note, even though some of the content is jointly developed with government agencies under partnership agreements, this is a private sector website and not a U.S. Government website.

The target audience is U.S. companies selling products and services whose overseas sales through ecommerce will generate jobs in the U.S. Our viewership ranges from start-up companies with intentions to launch online to mature companies which have been already selling products online in multiple overseas markets for 10+ years but have yet to fully optimize their ecommerce export strategy. Clients generate annual revenue ranging from a few million USD to 500 million USD and employ a few people to 500 employees.

A typical client may commit at least 10% of its operating budget to international business development and export to 5 countries a year with 12% of its annual revenue coming from overseas sales. About 65% of our clients have less than 100 employees.

Mr. Joshua Halpern

Founder and Executive Director, The Getting to Global Initiative

“While leading the ecommerce, logistics and retail portfolios for the U.S. Embassy in China, I witnessed competition heating up at a ferocious pace overseas. When asked to return to launch the eCommerce Innovation Lab for the U.S. Department of Commerce in Silicon Valley, I was determined to enlist the support of the global leaders in the industry to help our SMEs satisfy the growing global demand for unique, niche products. It is the age of small brands and it is time government and industry join forces to shepherd our SMEs into the global online arena.” Joshua Halpern, Founder and Executive Director, Getting to Global Initiative

From 2011 through 2015, Joshua Halpern led the eCommerce, Retail, Franchise and Logistics portfolios for the U.S. Embassy in China, where he provided market-entry consulting for U.S. companies entering China. He speaks regularly at industry conferences across the U.S., China and EU and has won U.S. State Department and Department of Commerce awards for his innovation in management and public-private ecommerce solutions.

He has led start-up teams for multiple companies throughout the world, including his own companies, IdiomArts Education, S.L. in Spain and Onthego Education, Inc. in the U.S./China and an education investment firm in India.

He is the creator of the Culture Agents, an interactive education program promoting cross-cultural understanding among youth.

Prior to his resignation, Mr. Halpern was a commissioned and tenured Foreign Service Officer. He holds a B.F.A. from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, an MBA from INSEAD and an EMBA from Tsinghua University. He speaks Spanish and Chinese.


The Global Retail Insights Network

The GRIN is a 501(c)(6) nonprofit membership organization. The GRIN is driven by one goal: to help global retailers and brands become leaders through collaboration and knowledge. Its member-based organization provides the data and insight needed to help brands benchmark their global performance, and take actionable steps to becoming a leading global player.

Foundation for American Science and Technology

TIts core initiatives include the “Technology for small business project” to bring cutting edge, scaled technology to support the challenges of local small businesses. Its programs are aimed at equipping small business to take advantage of bandwidth, search engine optimization, online marketing, RFID and other technologies to track inventory, web design, digital payment and currency exchange and more.

CITD networks

TThe CITD networks invest in California’s economic growth and global competitiveness through industry-specific education, training and services that contribute to a highly skilled and productive workforce. The California CITDs have offices across the state and provide a full range of trade assistance services with experts and resources to support export trade activities. CITD’s role in this initiative relates to the manufacturing sector support of online exports.