As a lead up to the first ever SACC Summit, Currents is running an interview series to shine light on each of the regional chambers by profiling a few of the dozens of amazing volunteers that donate their time to SACC every year. Each of the interviewees is one of the experienced and hard working people that make our network tick, but still only represents a small fraction of the talent that SACC has at its disposal. If you are interested in joining your local SACC chamber, check out their website, reach out to a board member, and get involved.
Name: Matias Bonnier
Matias Bonnier has been a part of SACC-Ohio since its official founding in 2006. He is a self-proclaimed Swedish-American “hybrid”. He was born inCaliforniato Swedish parents who later moved back toSweden. Matias returned later to theUSto finish High School. He then continued on and received his Mechanical Engineering degree fromSyracuseUniversityas well as his MBA in Operations Management from the Weatherhead School of Management atCaseWestern ReserveUniversityinCleveland,Ohio. Matias initially got involved with SACC when he was invited by the Swedish Consul in Cleveland, Michael Miller, to explore the possibility of starting a new SACC Chapter. During the exploration process, he became aware that there were many opportunities for Swedish-American businesses. In particular, many businesses were not aware of SACC, which could be a significant business partner and help with business contacts and information.
Another part of what excites Matias about volunteering for SACC is that he sees many small businesses with great ideas that have the potential to become large businesses if they had the opportunity to access proper business resources that SACC can provide. He takes pride in being involved in SACC and these small businesses and that they then can be provided with the opportunity to make that next step with assistance from SACC. Matias says he also greatly enjoys the opportunity to both network and socialize with culturally likeminded people.
One of the challenges facing SACC-Ohio is similar to those of other chambers: how to grow the chamber and increase participation while maintaining a balanced budget. Additionally, combatingOhio’s inaccurate reputation as a “fly over” state is also one of the Chambers’ challenges. Luckily,Ohiohas a lot going for it. It has a unique location and is within 600 miles of 60 percent of theU.S.population, as well as 50 percent of the Canadian population. Furthermore,Ohiohas a better cost of living compared to the coasts and this makesOhioa great place to have a business.
Matias is looking forward to the SACC Summit. It will be a great opportunity to network, as well as to meet others and to share information with other chambers.
For more information on SACC-Ohio:
For more information on SACC-USA
SACC Summit 2012: a reunion of the SACC network founded in 1988.
SACC Summit is the first annual gathering of all the Swedish-American Chambers of Commerce in theUnited Statessince the network’s founding in 1988. The program includes a conference during that day addressing everything from SACC’s role in Swedish-American trade promotion, to methods of serving and empowering members, to daily chamber operational efficiency. In the evening, H.E. Ambassador of Sweden Jonas Hafström has invited SACC and the Swedish consuls for a barbeque. Day two consists of a luncheon on Capitol Hill hosted by SACC-USA in partnership with the Swedish Congressional Caucus. SACC Summit will provide unparalleled opportunities for the SACC regional chambers to learn from and network with each other while solidifying SACC as the place where Swedish-American business comes to meet and develop transatlantic trade.