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Press Releases


  • Submitted on 07 October 2015

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    October 7, 2015
    Contact: Velicia Woods
    Email: vwoods@mbda.gov

     


    Agency makes $10.2 million available to launch MBDA Business Center program in 27 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico

    WASHINGTON (October 7, 2015) — Today the U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) launched a search for prospective partners to operate their newly improved business center program. MBDA plans to award 29 individual cooperative agreements to operate MBDA Business Centers beginning April 1, 2016. The awards will cover a 5-year period and total $10.2 million annually. The centers will be located in areas with substantial minority populations and minority-owned firms.  

    “Our new and improved business center program was developed based on performance outcomes of our most successful centers and where we’ve had the most impact,” says MBDA National Director Alejandra Y. Castillo. “Under the new program, the nationwide business center network is more integrated, places more emphasis on collaboration, and was designed to ensure the quality and consistency of service delivery throughout our nationwide network of business centers,”  

  • Submitted on 28 September 2015

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    September 28, 2015
    Contact: Velicia Woods
    Email: vwoods@mbda.gov

     

    Partnership Links Minority Entrepreneurs with Investors Nationwide

    WASHINGTON (September 28, 2015) The U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) has partnered with PowerMoves.NOLA to increase the number of venture-backed, high growth, and high tech companies in America founded by minority entrepreneurs.

    MBDA has awarded a grant to PowerMoves.NOLA to support their initiative to establish programs such as PowerMoves@City Ventures in cities across the United States. City Ventures introduces regional and national startup talent to partner cities, highlights existing local entrepreneurial resources and ecosystems, and aids the strategic positioning of those cities as regional hubs for minority business enterprises.  In just one year, PowerMoves.NOLA has helped 100 companies from across the country secure more than $17 million in capital commitments through the PowerMoves@City Ventures events. 

  • Submitted on 22 September 2015

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    September 22, 2015
    Contact: Velicia Woods
    Email: vwoods@mbda.gov

     

     

    WASHINGTON (September 22, 2015) The U.S. Department of Commerce Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) today announced the 2015 National Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week Award winners – 14 organizations, businesses, and individuals who demonstrate leadership and commitment in advancing the minority business community. For more than 30 years, MBDA has led the MED Week Celebration.  This year, MBDA is honored to continue the MED Week tradition in partnership with the National Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc. (NMSDC).  The awards reception will take place at the 2015 NMSDC Conference and Business Opportunity Exchange on October 20 in San Diego, CA.

    “This year’s MED Week awardees exemplify growth, diversity and transformation, and are true champions for the minority business community,” said Alejandra Y. Castillo, MBDA National Director. “We’re very proud of their tremendous achievements in impacting the national economy through innovation, job, and wealth creation.”

    The awards are designed to celebrate and recognize outstanding achievements of minority entrepreneurs based on the challenges the business has overcome, total revenue, jobs created and the economic impact the business has had on their community. MBDA also recognizes individuals and organizations that have demonstrated leadership and commitment to the advancement of the minority business community.

  • Submitted on 19 August 2015

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    August 19, 2015
    Contact: Velicia Woods
    Email: vwoods@mbda.gov

     

     

    Growth Rate of Minority-owned Firms and Nonminority-Owned FirmsWASHINGTON (August 19, 2015) — The U.S. Census Bureau released preliminary results from the 2012 Survey of Business Owners (SBO)[1] yesterday and minority-owned businesses continue to grow significantly faster than nonminority-owned businesses. The number of minority business enterprises (MBEs) increased 39 percent between 2007 and 2012[2] (from 5.8 million to 8.0 million), or more than three times faster than population growth among minorities. Employment at minority-owned firms increased 33 percent to 7.7 million jobs, while gross receipts were up 53 percent from 2007. In contrast, the number of non-minority firms shrank by five percent between 2007 and 2012.  Employment at nonminority firms increased seven percent, or less than one-fourth as fast as in MBEs and receipts in nonminority firms increased 27 percent or half as fast as in MBEs,

  • Submitted on 29 July 2015

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    July 29, 2015
    Contact: MBDA Public Affairs
    Email: MBDAPublicAffairs@mbda.gov

     

     

    WASHINGTON (July 29, 2015) — Today, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) released its Annual Performance Report for FY 2014, during which the Agency saw an overall 45% increase in client contract and capital transactions. The reported $6.9 billion in client contracts and capital far surpasses the amount MBDA Business Centers achieved in FY 2013 and led to the creation and retention of nearly 31,000 jobs. Much of the increase came from export businesses, which benefits from the Obama Administration’s focus on international markets as strategy for business growth and job creation.

    MBDA’s FY 2014 performance builds on the success of its 45-year history and sets the stage for future years to come. These achievements reflect MBDA’s mission to support minority-owned firms as critical contributors to our economy. By the year 2044, minorities will become the majority of the U.S. population. “This change in America’s demographic landscape will transform the marketplace and the face of American business and presents an incredible opportunity for American commerce,” said Alejandra Castillo, MBDA National Director. “This is the work of MBDA in the next 45 years – equipping minority entrepreneurs and leveraging their natural strengths in both domestic and global markets; helping them build capacity and expertise; engaging them in technological innovation; and diversifying the industries they will enter.”

  • Submitted on 19 March 2015

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    March 19, 2015
    Contact: Al Betancourt - MBDA Public Affairs
    Email: abetancourt@mbda.gov

     

     

    WASHINGTON (March 19, 2015) —The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and CEO Connection have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at helping U.S. minority CEOs grow through enhanced access to resources and economic opportunities. 

  • Submitted on 04 December 2014

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    December 4, 2014
    Contact: Al Betancourt - MBDA Public Affairs
    Email: abetancourt@mbda.gov

     

     

    WASHINGTON (December 4, 2014) —The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC) have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at increasing referrals between the two entities and ultimately increasing economic opportunities for minority-owned businesses.

  • Submitted on 16 October 2014

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    October 16, 2014
    Contact: Al Betancourt - MBDA Public Affairs
    Email: abetancourt@mbda.gov

     

     

    WASHINGTON (October 16, 2014) —The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) and the National Association of Minority and Women-Owned Law Firms (NAMWOLF) have entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) aimed at increasing economic opportunities presented to minority-owned law firms, while also assisting minority business enterprises in accessing quality legal services.

    “This partnership provides an ideal avenue through which MBDA can expand its services to minority-owned firms in the professional services industry,” said MBDA National Director Alejandra Y. Castillo. “It also supports our continued effort in helping to grow, transform and diversify our minority business community.” 

    MBDA maintains a national network of 44 Business Centers equipped with specialists that help the nation’s minority-owned firms grow through access to capital, contracts, and new markets. NAMWOLF is a nonprofit trade association comprised of minority and women-owned law firms and other interested parties throughout the United States. NAMWOLF has a membership of 130 law firms across 35 states.

  • Submitted on 02 October 2014

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    October 2, 2014
    Contact: Al Betancourt - MBDA Public Affairs
    Email: abetancourt@mbda.gov

     

     

    WASHINGTON (October 2, 2014) —Thanks to savings derived from a multi-year strategy to reduce administrative and operational overhead costs, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) today announced a supplemental investment of $1.425 million to nine existing MBDA Business Centers. The funds will support the Business Centers in their efforts to better serve minority business communities nationwide.

    “At MBDA our goal is to expand the Agency’s reach, expertise, and resources to serve as many minority business enterprises through our national network of MBDA Business Centers,” said Alejandra Y. Castillo, MBDA National Director. “These supplemental funds will ensure that we provide greater assistance to minority-owned businesses to support job creation and the continued growth of the U.S. economy.”

  • Submitted on 01 August 2014

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    August 1, 2014
    Contact: Al Betancourt - MBDA Public Affairs
    Email: abetancourt@mbda.gov

     

     

    Seattle Small Business Owner Albert Shen to Serve in Agency’s Second-Highest Position

    WASHINGTON (August 1, 2014) — Alejandra Y. Castillo, National Director of the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA), today announced the appointment of Albert Shen to serve as MBDA’s National Deputy Director. Shen is a Washington state native whose leadership and community advocacy has had a tremendous impact on many economic projects in the Northwest.

    “The success of minority-owned businesses is fundamentally essential to our nation’s economic vitality,” said Castillo. “MBDA works diligently in laying the foundation that is giving rise to the fastest growing segment of the business community. I am very confident that Albert will continue to maximize these opportunities and be a great asset to our MBDA team.”

    Shen, a second generation Chinese-American, grew up in Pullman, Wash., where his family owned several minority businesses. In 2000, he founded Shen Consulting, where he played an instrumental role in projects such as the Port of Seattle’s Seattle Tacoma International Airport Capital Improvement Program and numerous other capital programs in the greater Seattle area.