Global Business: Bigger Than You Think

The NAR delegation during their meeting at the Embassy of Sweden last month.

The NAR delegation during their meeting at the Embassy of Sweden last month.

International business investment in the United States is so pervasive that it sometimes surprises even people who spend a lot of time paying attention to this stuff. CIPS designees from around the country discovered this while visiting the Swedish Embassy last month during the REALTOR® Party Convention & Trade Expo.

The NAR delegation met with Andreas von Uexküll, head of trade and economic affairs for Sweden’s U.S. Embassy. Among the guests were NAR’s President’s Liaison to Sweden, Hanne Sagalowsky and representatives from the NAR Ambassador Association to Sweden, the Mainstreet Organization of REALTORS®, which covers a large section of the Chicago suburbs. The main topic of conversation was a look at Swedish economic and business ties with the United States, which was summed up in an informational brochure provided to CIPS designees during the meeting.

According to an article written by Jonas Hafström, who served as Sweden’s ambassador to the U.S. from 2007-2013, “Swedish companies, combined with American exports to Sweden, generate approximately one quarter of a million American jobs.”

Swedish companies invest in all 50 U.S. states, and the economic impact it has is often substantial. Take Illinois, for example: According to the brochure, 9,100 jobs in that state are supported by direct investment from Sweden. And outbound business is significant, too. Commodity exports from Illinois to Sweden totaled $254,201,548 as of 2013, and that supports 1,290 jobs in the state.

However, the Swedes weren’t the only ones who shared eye-opening information. At the end of the visit, Sagalowsky presented embassy staff with the newest CIPS consumer-facing marketing piece: “Your Guide to Finding International Real Estate Agents in the U.S. and Worldwide.” She also advised them to look for assistance from a designee if they ever get questions from Swedish nationals about purchasing real estate in this country.

A number of CIPS designees list Sweden as a specialization in their online profiles. To access the CIPS directory, visit

Brian Summerfield

Brian Summerfield is Manager of Business Development and Outreach for NAR Commercial and Global Services. He can be reached at

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