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MBDA Awards $7.8 Million in Grants to Advance the Growth of U.S. Minority Businesses

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Funding will support 27 MBDA Business Centers, including two new centers in Cleveland and Denver

Visit MBDA Business CentersWASHINGTON, D.C. (April 6, 2011) —The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) today announced $7.8 million in funding for 27 MBDA Business Centers (MBC) located across the country to boost job creation and foster the economic growth of minority firms in the United States, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.

MBDA Business Centers assist minority entrepreneurs with access to markets, contracts and capital and offer strategic business consulting services to facilitate 21st century growth in today’s global economy.  MBCs interface directly with minority business owners and managers at the local level and provide enhanced assistance through MBDA’s national strategic partners, both within the Federal government and the private sector.

“The MBDA Business Center program has shown remarkable success, and with a renewed focus on job creation in high-growth industries that leverages global business opportunities and teaming arrangements, we’ve raised the performance bar,” said MBDA National Director David Hinson. “MBCs are catalysts for minority business development, and by investing in these centers at the local level, we will see reverberating effects throughout the national economy.”

The newly restructured MBC program extends the cooperative agreements from three to five years and expands the reach of the MBC nationwide network to meet President Obama’s challenge to out-innovate, out-build, and out-educate the rest of the world. Two new centers will serve minority businesses in Cleveland, Ohio, and Denver, Co., and join MBDA’s Business Center network.

“A new MBDA Business Center in Cleveland will not only boost the local minority business community but also create additional economic benefits for the entire region as well,” said Andrew Jackson, operator of the Cleveland MBC.

“We look forward to a operating a MBDA Business Center and building more competitive minority business enterprises both across the state and the country,” said Stan Sena, operator of the Denver MBC.

While each of the 27 centers are strategically located in areas with significant minority business activity, the redesigned program’s broad geographic focus aims to help all minority enterprises, regardless of where they are located. 

MBCs will play a particularly important role in helping minority-owned businesses increase their exports. In an increasingly global economy, where opportunities are just as likely to be found overseas as they are around the corner, minority businesses are critical to achieving the goals of President Obama’s National Export Initiative.  

“Minority-owned businesses excel at exporting, and with unique language and cultural connections to other countries, they are exporting powerhouses with great potential for growth,” Hinson said.

Minority business owners who are interested in receiving assistance from an MBDA Business Center can find their closest center by visiting www.mbda.gov.

FY 2011 MBDA Business Center grant recipients include:

MBC Location (State, City)

Federal Funding Per Year

Cooperative Agreement Partners

Alabama – Mobile


Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce

Arizona - Phoenix


Arizona Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

California – Los Angeles


University of Southern California

California – San Jose


Asian, Inc.

Colorado – Denver


Rocky Mountain Minority Supplier Development Council

Florida – Miami


M. Gill & Associates, Inc.

Florida – Orlando


Florida Minority Supplier Development Council

Georgia – Atlanta


Georgia Tech Research Corporation

Hawaii – Honolulu


University of Hawaii

Illinois – Chicago


Chicago Minority Supplier Development Council

Indiana – Indianapolis


Indiana Business Diversity Council

Michigan – Detroit


Michigan Minority Business Development Council

Mississippi – Biloxi


Mississippi Development Authority

Nevada – Las Vegas


New Ventures Capital Development Company

New Mexico – Albuquerque


NEDA Business Consultants, Inc.

New York – Manhattan


National Community Reinvestment Coalition, Inc.

New York – Williamsburg


ODA Community Development Corporation

North Carolina – Raleigh


North Carolina Institute of Minority Economic Development

Ohio – Cleveland


Economic Growth Foundation

Pennsylvania – Philadelphia


The Enterprise Center

Puerto Rico – San Juan


Asociacíon Productos de Puerto Rico

South Carolina – Columbia


DESA, Inc.

Texas – Dallas


Dallas/Fort Worth Minority Supplier Development Council

Texas – El Paso


El Paso Hispanic Chamber of Commerce

Texas – San Antonio


University of Texas at San Antonio

Washington – Seattle


Seattle Business Assistance Center

Washington, District of Columbia


National Community Reinvestment Coalition, Inc.


About the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)

MBDA, www.mbda.gov, an agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, promotes 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.  With a nationwide network of more than 40 business centers and strategic partners, MBDA assists minority entrepreneurs and business owners with consulting services, contract and financing opportunities, bonding and certification services, building business-to-business alliances and executive training.

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