October 5, 2017

Former Maine foreign trade chief launches consultancy

Photo / Tim Greenway
Photo / Tim Greenway
Janine Bisaillon-Cary, former president of the Maine International Trade Center, has started a consulting company named Montserrat Group to assist small and medium-sized Maine businesses with global trade ambitions.

Four months after leaving her post as president of Maine International Trade Center, Janine Bisaillon-Cary is offering her consulting expertise to small and medium-sized Maine businesses with global ambitions.

She and her associates in the new Montserrat Group will help craft strategies for companies in sectors such as food and advanced manufacturing with an interest in tapping foreign markets.

"What I'm really looking to do," she told Mainebiz, "is work with companies that need an overall strategic plan, that want a little bit more interaction with a person that wants to hand-hold it through that process to make sure they end up having success."

Bisaillon-Cary noted that so many Maine companies are owner-operated and simply don't have the staff to develop a strategic plan and then follow through, which is critical. Without disclosing details she said she's working on two projects, one related to investment in the food industry and the other around advanced manufacturing and technology.

"It's nice to have a couple of projects to start out with," she noted, saying her focus would be mostly on North America and Europe.

Her team of associates is made up of Michael Stone, president of Stone & Associates in Portland; Annette Bossler, founder of Main(e) International Consulting LLC; Carl Spang, who has managed and developed companies in the computer hardware, manufacturing information systems, materials handling and footwear industries; and OCO Global, an international business consulting firm headquartered in Belfast, Northern Ireland, with offices in London, Paris, Frankfurt, New York and Tokyo.

"All of them have different expertise in terms of international trade or investment," said Bisaillon-Cary.

After leaving MITC, Bisaillon-Cary took the summer off to travel in Europe and the United States, where she "definitely learned a lot on the way and got to clear my mind for this new venture and new opportunities."

She chose the name "Montserrat" for her company after her old neighborhood in Beverly, Mass., tweaking it to get it registered.

"There are some financial institutions called Montserrat, so I had to make sure whatever I used wasn't something that was already taken," said Bisaillon-Cary, whose job title is president. "No one had Montserrat Group."

Currently working out of her home in Cape Elizabeth, she's on the hunt for an office in Portland, where she has most of her meetings. Her first choice would be shared space with people who are also interested in the international field.


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