The Foundation for Export Development was founded as early as 1977 by five Swedish business organizations. After selling their shares in “The Export School” to Exportrådet (now Business Sweden), the capital has been used to promote Swedish exports in different ways. For instance to scholarships to researchers and young professionals for projects highlighting interesting aspects of exports and international trade.

Since 1981 the award EXPORT HERMES has annually been given to Swedish companies for their exceptional achievements in exports or international trade. Today the award is organized by the Foundation for Export Development in collaboration with the Swedish Chambers of Commerce. The award ceremony traditionally takes place during the World Trade Day in August in Stockholm. The last few years the EXPORT HERMES statuette has been presented by H.R.H Crown Princess Victoria.