MBDA Centers Open in Bronx, Baltimore
Created on April 17, 2014
Minority-owned businesses seeking to grow their firms and branch out into new markets have new resources to find help. The Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) proudly welcomed two new MBDA Business Centers into their family of network centers that operate across the U.S. and Puerto Rico.
On March 17, while most of the Eastern region of the country braced for a snow storm, the Bronx MBDA Business Center held their grand opening ceremony. Local legislators, community leaders and business owners joined the celebration held at the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation (SoBro) offices. SoBro was awarded a $1.5 million grant to operate the center for three years.
“Our center is here to promote the growth and global competitiveness of the minority business community, making them better equipped to create jobs, impact local economies and compete successfully in domestic and global marketplaces,” said Phillip Morrow, President and CEO of SoBro. “Together, I know that we will engage minority businesses to promote growth, and further the discussion with leaders from the public, private and non-profit sectors on how their current priorities and initiatives align with the goals of the center.”
On the heels of the Bronx MBDA Business Center, the Baltimore MBDA Business Center held their grand opening ceremony on March 21. Baltimore Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake joined U.S. Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, Alejandra Castillo, MBDA Acting National Director and many other distinguished guests, to launch the MBDA Business Center, made possible through a three-year, $900,000 grant. Baltimore is the only municipality to be awarded this grant.
“The MBDA Business Center will spur job creation and retention, as well as award more minority- and women-owned businesses with the support they need to grow and thrive," said Mayor Rawlings-Blake. “This center fits perfectly into my vision for growing Baltimore—through economic empowerment that can stimulate job creation. I want Baltimore to be a mecca for entrepreneurs and a place where small businesses know they can prosper.”
The center is co-located with the Baltimore Development Corporation’s Small Business Resource Center at the Johns Hopkins in Eastern Building. Minority Business Enterprises (MBEs) will now have a one-stop shop for resources, assistance and expertise.
“I am pleased to join Mayor Rawlings-Blake and Director Castillo to launch Baltimore’s MBDA Business Center,” Congressman Cummings said. “This center will ensure that the minority business enterprises in Baltimore will have access to the resources they need to succeed in our global economy. Minority and women-owned businesses create sustainable jobs. By strengthening these businesses, we uplift our entire community. It’s a win-win for us all.”