The chief executive officer of the Mid-States Minority Supplier Development Council in Indianapolis says the new Accelerate 100+ program is designed to fill a gap between corporations and qualified minority suppliers. The organization launched the program this week with the goal of scaling 150 diverse businesses in central Indiana and helping launch 30 new businesses. “We’ve heard from our customers, which are major corporations, that in many instances, they’re having difficulty finding qualified diverse suppliers to do business with,” said Carolyn Mosby.
In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Mosby said the council wants to help fill that void and close gaps in the corporate supply chain.
“We’ve been able to obtain data from many of the largest global and national corporations that speaks specifically to where they have gaps in their supply chain and where they’re looking for diverse suppliers,” said Mosby. “So, we’re going to use that data to introduce new opportunities to existing businesses, as well as creating 30 new businesses in this program.”
The types of diverse businesses include those owned and operated by ethnic minorities, women, service disabled veterans, and LGBTQ+ individuals.
Mosby says many companies already have supplier diversity programs and some do not. However, she says they all sometimes have the problem of finding qualified suppliers. She adds supplier diversity has been around for over 50 years.
“If you also look at data, it shows that in 1969, there were just 89,000 minority businesses. By 2018, there were over 1.1 million minority businesses,” said Mosby. “So, that’s a huge growth in 51 years, but only 2.6% of minority businesses had revenue over $1 million in 2018. So, there hasn’t been a lot of growth in terms of financial success for those businesses and then when you include the entire spectrum of diverse businesses, that number is even greater.”
The Mid-States MSDC says the program will help participants access local and national contracting opportunities, in addition to coaching and mentoring services, and an emphasis on conducting market research.
Mosby says the services offered through the program will vary based on each participant.
“We will evaluate the business, see where they are and then according to where they are, we’ll actually slot them in certain modules within our different program structure,” she said. “What we know is that a very new business that’s been in business for less than 10 years, maybe has less than $1 million in revenue, their needs are very different than a company that’s been in business for 20 years and has $50 million in revenue. So, the program is tailored to meet each entrepreneur…and develop a very strategic path to help them grow and scale their businesses.”
For the entrepreneurs looking to start a new business, Mosby says the program will introduce them to opportunities in the marketplace they may not be aware of them. The program will aim to help them navigate the best course for starting their business.
“We need to get new entrepreneurs into the pipeline of starting and growing successful businesses, so that they can come along an either acquire businesses, assume ownership of existing businesses…but then also be aware of the many opportunities that exist in the marketplace for their particular product or service. So, we want to make sure that we’re using the resources that we have, especially from corporate America, to help those young entrepreneurs learn about supplier diversity and then take advantage of the many opportunities that exist to be successful in corporate America.”
You can learn more about the Accelerate 100+ program by clicking here.
Mosby says the council wants to help fill the supplier diversity void and close gaps in the corporate supply chain.