The National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSDC) has received a multi-year, $3 million Capital Readiness Program grant from the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) to launch the MBE Center for Accelerated Growth and Innovation. Thanks to the initial support of the MBDA, NMSDC will launch this transformation center to scale historically underrepresented certified socially economically disadvantaged individuals (SEDIs) and focus on minority business enterprises (MBEs).
NMSDC’s existing national geographic reach, its deep partnerships with the nation’s top Fortune 500 corporations, and its experience with state/local government make it well-positioned to help SEDIs scale their businesses to meet the needs of the dynamic and growing U.S. economy. It is also uniquely suited to help these businesses participate in the federal contracting opportunities created by recent legislation like the Infrastructure and Jobs Act and CHIPS and Science Act.
The MBE Center for Accelerated Growth and Innovation will focus its work on three pillar programs:
- Contract Readiness: This capacity-building initiative will prepare certified MBEs for doing business with the federal government and national/global corporations.
- Capital Connection Program and Platform: This effort will cultivate a powerful network of capital options for certified MBEs, both private and State Small Business Credit Initiative (SSBCI) programs.
- NMSDC Matchmaking and Marketplace Tool and Opportunity Connections: This tool will integrate with NMSDC’s customer relationship management and certification tool to bring certified MBE profiles to an open, online marketplace, connecting them to corporate members and government entities actively seeking suppliers and sourcing solutions.
NMSDC recognizes that the United States is nowhere near achieving economic parity for SEDIs. However, there is also momentum and commitment within government and corporate entities to make the systemic changes needed to create positive momentum toward addressing this issue. According to the Federal Reserve, white households in America have on average, eight times the wealth of Black households and five times the wealth of Latino households – a disparity that has increased since the pandemic. Contributing to this reality is that, according to the Small Business Administration (SBA), in 2020 Black businesses received only 1.67 percent of the more than $559 billion in federal contracting dollars available to small businesses, with Hispanic businesses representing only 1.78 percent of this spend and Asian Pacific American businesses representing only 1.23 percent.
“We find ourselves at an unprecedented moment in history. Despite the progress that has been made in supplier and business diversity, we know that we still have a long way to go if we are going to create the thriving, equitable business environment that is the key to not only achieving generational wealth for communities of color but also for the long term growth and sustainability of our nation’s economy,” says NMSDC CEO and President Ying McGuire. “We are incredibly grateful for MBDA’s support of the MBE Center for Accelerated Growth and Innovation and look forward to the enormous impact it will have on MBE growth in the coming years,” she added.Forty-three organizations received MBDA Capital Readiness Program grants including NMSDC regional affiliate council the Capital Region Minority Supplier Development Council (CRMSDC), and strategic partners U.S. Black Chambers, Inc. (USBC), the United States Hispanic Chamber of Commerce (USHCC) and the National Asian/Pacific Islander American Chamber of Commerce & Entrepreneurship (National ACE).