Local family-run candy company looks to continue growth internationally

One local homegrown candy manufacturer is expanding its business overseas which could lead to more jobs in Pierce County.

For about 30 years Ames International produced chocolate and nut products in Western Washington.

“Nonstop chocolate; all you can eat,” said Amy Paulose.

In the 60s, Paulose’s father George, immigrated from India. Eventually, the rest of his family followed, and George Paulose created Ames International.

“My father decided to start a business to support the family,” said Amy Paulose.

The rest of the family included aunts, cousins, and even Paulose, and her younger sister Emily. As children, they worked jobs like assisting on the manufacturing floor. Now, Paulose is the president of Ames International.

Within the last year, Paulose has worked to take the local company her father built international.

Wednesday, officials with TMALL, a Chinese language business to consumer website similar to Amazon, signed an agreement to continue to grow the product with Ames International.

“Huge opportunity to help American merchants, the new {Chinese} middle class is looking for the high-quality products in the united states,” said Alvin Liu, the General Manager of Tmall

Paulose says they expect overseas business to become the majority of the company’s sales within the next five years. She says she expects such a large growth they are considering growing their staff here in Washington.