Sean Casey received the award from Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo in Washington on June 6. Photo courtesy of Sean Casey

Atlanta-based Rotorcorp has taken home a presidential export award for its international sales focus, the only company in Georgia decorated with the honor this year. 

A parts exporter that helps keep Robinson Helicopters aloft all over the world, Rotorcorp received the President’s E Award for exports from U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo during a ceremony in Washington June 6.

With 24 total recipients in 2023, the E Award is the highest recognition that a private company can receive from the U.S. government for excellence in international trade. The award, offered to a handful of Georgia companies in the past, often goes to those firms that not only engage in exporting but also help promote trade among other small and medium-sized firms. 

Rotorcorp has long seen international trade as integral to its business and has tapped into various government resources that have helped its small team win 3,000 customers across 45 countries — including some hard-to-reach or heavily regulated jurisdictions that may have scared away less intrepid entrepreneurs.

In recent years, its export nods include the Georgia Department of Economic Development’s GLOBE Award for entering new markets, as well as the Atlanta Metro Export Challenge, a $5,000 reimbursable grant program spearheaded by the Metro Atlanta Chamber. Rotorcorp was named the Small Business Administration’s Exporter of the Year for Georgia in 2019. He also uses the Export-Import Bank of the United States bank financing and guarantees often.

More recently, co-founder and CEO Sean Casey has also served the export ecosystem locally and nationally. He was reappointed last year to the aerospace-focused International Trade Advisory Committee, or ITAC, a joint initiative for through which Commerce and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative glean private-sector insight to inform their policy initiatives. 

Mr. Casey and Rotorcorp’s now-bilingual (English and Spanish) customer service team scored points toward the E Award by embracing technology in an industry Mr. Casey has said is constrained by stubbornly outmoded practices.  

The CEO has spent many years upgrading the company’s parts inventory systems and building out e-commerce capabilities that parallel what buyers might find on popular websites. 

“We are truly honored to be one of just 11 companies to receive the 2023 ‘E’ Award,” Mr. Casey said in a news release, referring to the fact that many award winners were export service providers. “With more than half of our revenues now derived from serving our International customers, the ‘E’ Award is a validation of our commitment to a well-developed export strategy and continued investments into our systems, processes and the growth of our professional team.” 

Founded in 2011, Rotorcorp’s large customer base gives it a claim as the largest provider of parts, engines and kits for Robinson Helicopters like the R22, R44 and R66. 

In a recent International deal, Rotorcorp provided the Uruguay National Police with components and engines through a public tender. 

The company this year brought on experienced aerospace executive Mike Gomez as a vice president in charge of global market expansion. 

Ms. Raimondo said that Rotorcorp had contributed significantly to the U.S. efforts to boost exports around the world and create more jobs. 

“On behalf of President Joe Biden, I congratulate Rotorcorp on its distinguished achievements in exports, which is delivering tangible benefits for local economies, workers and their families,” the Commerce secretary said in a statement. “The world turns to the United States for innovative products and solutions thanks in part to U.S. businesses of all shapes and sizes that export. Rotorcorp serves as a model that will inspire enterprises and entrepreneurs everywhere.”

As managing editor of Global Atlanta, Trevor has spent 15+ years reporting on Atlanta’s ties with the world. An avid traveler, he has undertaken trips to 30+ countries to uncover stories on the perils...