Commerce's Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) is enabling job creation and growth within minority-owned companies as they expand through innovation and untapped resources. MBDA has 50 business development centers and regional offices throughout the country and is preparing to open its newest business center in Cleveland, Ohio, in September to continue to create an environment for support, technical training and access to capital, contracts and to markets for business owners there.
Knowing that many jobs of the 21st century will be in clean and renewable energy, green technology, and Healthcare IT, the MBDA Business Centers are reaching out to minority-owned firms so they can expand into those new areas and keep communities strong and workers employed.
For example, MBDA client Sacred Power Corporation Inc. based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is a Native-American-owned renewable and distributive energy manufacturer. Sacred Power operates on the principle that “the world in which we live can change its current direction and dependence on polluting energy sources and convert to renewable technologies that provide clean, long-term solutions to today’s energy problems.”
Sacred Power is the largest Native-American-owned renewable energy company in the U.S., and has received numerous contracts, including a $500,000 federal grant to build and install self-sustaining solar electricity systems for homes without power in remote areas of the Navajo Nation. In providing renewable electricity to its customers, the company employs a diverse workforce.
Sacred Power is one example of the many MBDA clients that is turning entrepreneurship into job creation. Dave Scott Melton, a Sacred Power principal, is a Laguna Tribal member and has more than 15 years of experience in high-tech industry. Melton credits MBDA with assisting his business financing and bonding. “MBDA assisted us along the whole timeline of business development,” Melton said.
MBDA plays a key role in helping minority-owned companies identify resources that will help them take their business to the next level.
Last year, MBDA assisted minority firms in securing nearly $4 billion in financing opportunities and contracts while creating 6,400 new jobs that help to stimulate local economies.