U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker presented Harris Research, Inc. (HRI), parent company of home service franchise brands Chem-Dry Carpet and Upholstery Cleaning and N-Hance Wood Renewal with the President’s “E” Award for Exports at a ceremony in Washington, DC earlier this week. The President’s “E” Award is the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for making a significant contribution to the expansion of U.S. exports.
“Harris Research, Inc. has demonstrated a sustained commitment to export expansion. The ‘E’ Awards Committee was very impressed with HRI’s adaptation of its product line for export markets. HRI’s achievements have undoubtedly contributed to national export expansion efforts that support the U.S. economy and create American jobs,” said Secretary Pritzker in her congratulatory letter to the company announcing its selection as an award recipient.
Chem-Dry is the world’s largest carpet and upholstery cleaning service, with a presence in 51 countries. The company uses a green-certified solution and proprietary hot carbonating extraction cleaning process that allow surfaces to dry faster, provide a deeper clean, and create healthier homes and workplaces. N-Hance is a proprietary wood restoration service that requires no sanding and can be a fraction of the cost of re-facing or replacing cabinets, floors and other wood surfaces. N-Hance, a trusted partner of The Home Depot, has over 400 franchises across the U.S. and Canada.
Both Chem-Dry and N-Hance sold more than 100 franchise units each in 2015, for the first time in the company’s history. Over the past year, Chem-Dry has opened in Egypt, Bahrain, the Philippines, Trinidad and Tobago and Barbados, and has identified additional target markets including Turkey, Bahamas, Argentina, Columbia and other Central American countries. Both brands were also ranked No. 1 in their respective categories in Entrepreneur magazine’s 2016 Franchise 500 listing.
“Exporting is a key component of supporting the current markets we serve as well as our continued international expansion, and we are honored to receive the ‘E’ Award,” said HRI President and CEO Dan Tarantin. “We first began exporting in 1987, and our export sales have grown to become a significant part of our business over the past three decades as we’ve found outstanding master franchise partners who share our vision and see the opportunity for the brand. The fact that Chem-Dry is in 51 countries around the world today is testament to our superior processes and the strength of the environmentally friendly home services market.”
In 1961, President Kennedy signed an executive order reviving the World War II “E” symbol of excellence to honor and provide recognition to America's exporters. Earlier this week, Secretary Pritzker honored 123 U.S. companies with the President’s “E” Award for their outstanding work to reduce barriers to foreign markets and to open the door to more trade around the world.
In 2015, U.S. exports totaled $2.23 trillion, accounting for nearly 13 percent of U.S. GDP. Nationally, exports contributed to the U.S. economy, supporting an estimated 11.5 million jobs.
U.S. companies are nominated for the “E” Awards through the Department of Commerce’s U.S. Commercial Service office network, located within the Department’s International Trade Administration, with offices in 108 U.S. cities and more than 70 countries. Record years of successive export growth and an applicant’s demonstration of an innovative international marketing plan that led to the increase in exports is a significant factor in selecting the winners.