LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 5, 2013) – The University of Kentucky, Messer Construction, and National Diversity Solutions announced today a contract of more than $2 million as part of the construction of five residence halls on the University of Kentucky’s campus. The announcement also highlights the launch of Commerce Lexington Inc.’s new Minority Business Accelerator (MBA), which was created to assist growing minority business enterprises and large corporations in making connections that benefit all sides and help each achieve their goals for success.
The mission of the Minority Business Accelerator is to accelerate the development of minority business enterprises (MBEs) and to strengthen and expand the regional minority entrepreneurial community. Created from the findings of the 2009 study commissioned by Commerce Lexington Inc. and the Urban League of Lexington-Fayette County, as well as the analysis of our year-long strategic plan, the MBA will actively seek to improve the readiness of minority businesses while increasing the recognition of the value of Ethnic-Minority-owned businesses as suppliers, customers and investment opportunities.
The MBA is designed to deliver more sizeable and scalable MBEs to the marketplace (supply-side), as well as create a more aggressive and robust corporate MBE procurement environment (demand-side). The MBA initiative works to build mutually-beneficial business relationships for MBEs, the corporate community, and the public sector.
The MBA initiative will work to accelerate the growth of the MBEs through organic growth, by facilitating substantial contract opportunities with major corporate customers, and through high-value deal opportunities. Past examples of high-value deal opportunities with other such entities have included acquisitions, joint ventures, strategic alliances, and enhanced capitalizations.
Research indicates that larger MBEs have an increased potential for a greater direct impact on the regional economy through increased purchasing power and the ability to create jobs in underutilized communities.
The Accelerator initiates a local corporate MBE partnership strategy to focus the area’s largest corporations, school systems, and local government on the positive impact of concentrated spending with local diverse companies. These collective procurement dollars serve as an important investment strategy to drive the growth of the regional minority business community. It also demonstrates the desire of corporate leaders to positively impact the region where they maintain headquarters or significant operations.
Supporting minority firms through competitive sourcing not only helps increase employment in minority communities, but ultimately improves the economic condition of neighborhoods and increases purchasing power. Studies have shown a strong local economy will benefit Lexington through a talented workforce, and improved quality of life and public safety.
The Central Kentucky Region faces a great opportunity to build on its strong reputation as one of the nation’s foremost communities to live, work and play. It is our belief that our community can begin to attract new businesses and new assets at a greater rate when all segments of the community operate at the highest level. The Accelerator initiative offers a significant opportunity for growth-oriented corporations and strong minority businesses to get stronger and create more jobs in our area.