About Us

Our Mission

Sam Crane
Sam Crane, President

Our mission is to enable our clients to realize their potential in the international marketplace with honest, accurate information and focused attention to their business opportunities.

We believe that international commerce is one of the best means of promoting global harmony. Mutual trust and understanding develop through business relationships. We treat each individual encounter as an occasion to manifest this reality. As these relationships deepen and expand, they affect the fabric of the societies involved.


How We Work

Over the years, founder and principal Sam Crane has developed a wealth of international business alliances and contacts through commercial enterprise, participation in international trade missions and leadership roles in professional organizations.


Some of these roles are:

  • President, Charlotte World Trade Association
  • Vice President, North Carolina World Trade Association
  • Board of Directors Charlotte World Trade Association
  • Board of Directors North Carolina World Trade Association
  • Member, American Turkish Council, Washington

Sam has built his professional alliances and contacts into a global network of associates in varying disciplines including sales, marketing, finance, export management, export trading and international logistics. Each associate has an area of expertise based on geography, education, training and experience.

Individuals from this talented group are engaged on a project basis according to the specific client’s needs. This brings focus and power to the deal and allows us to realize and act on the client’s opportunity without creating undue expense.

Our History

Crane & Associates is a consultancy specializing in international sales and marketing. Founder Sam Crane’s first international exposure began when he attended a top–tier, elite language institute, the Defense Language Institute (DLI) in Monterey, CA, for a year of immersive study in Turkish language, culture, customs and history as part of his military service. Afterwards he posted to NATO headquarters in Izmir, Turkey working as Special Assistant to the Chief of Staff.

Sam Crane (far right) with Turkish tobacco experts
Sam Crane (far right) with Turkish tobacco experts in Tavas, Turkey 

While living in Turkey, prior to his discharge from the Army, enjoying his international exposure and wanting a little adventure, Sam arranged employment with Liggett & Myers Tobacco Company in Izmir, Turkey.

After separation from the Army, where he received the Army Commendation Medal for his efforts with NATO, Sam worked for Liggett and Myers for the next three years, traveling the Aegean and Black Sea areas of Turkey. He assisted in the purchase and preparation of tobacco for export while cultivating and maintaining relations with growers, merchants and government officials.

Upon returning to the U.S. and earning a degree in Business Administration from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, Sam began a 16 year highly successful career in U.S. domestic sales and sales management. In 1996 he formed Orient Trading Company, Inc., combining his passion for international business and his expertise in sales and marketing.

Originally formed for export trading, the company’s primary activity changed over the years from trading to consulting. We found it advantageous to many manufacturers to wrap our knowledge and expertise around their mass and resources and, working together, help them generate international sales. Since then we have helped our clients realize millions of dollars in export sales.