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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, October 7, 2011


NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF SMALL BUSINESS SERVICES AND TWELVE CORPORATE PARTNERS INVITE SMALL BUSINESSES TO BEGIN PARTICIPATING IN THE CORPORATE ALLIANCE PROGRAM

Three initiatives that expand opportunities for minority-and women-owned firms, small businesses and construction firms are now open for application


NEW YORK ‚Äď The NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS) has announced the start of three initiatives through the Corporate Alliance Program (CAP). The CAP/Columbia University Construction Mentorship Program, Corporate Coaching Program, and Corporate Skills Training initiative are all open for enrollment. The Corporate Alliance Program is designed to connect certified Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprises with contracting and capacity-building opportunities in the private sector.

"We want to help these small businesses every step of the way," said SBS Commissioner Rob Walsh. "We are proud to be setting the initiative into motion that offers certified M/WBEs the ability to obtain skills that will teach them to expand their businesses with the private sector and we encourage them to take advantage of additional services through NYC Business Solutions."

The Corporate Alliance Program is the result of a concerted effort from the Mayor, the City of New York, and twelve private corporations to increase opportunities for minority- and women-owned small businesses in this difficult economic climate. These programs offer an opportunity for firms to connect with major participating corporations and win contracts. Becoming a supplier to a large corporation adds credibility and stability to a small business while increasing revenue. It also helps strengthen supplier-diversity programs at leading institutions in the City. Participating corporations include Accenture, American Express, AXA Equitable, BNY Mellon, Citi, Colgate-Palmolive, Columbia University, Con Edison, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs, IBM and National Grid. "We believe we are called to address the business concerns of the small, minority and women owned business community by identifying procurement opportunities to help them grow," said Carla Hunter Ramsey, Director of Supplier Diversity at National Grid. "National Grid values its partnership with the Corporate Alliance Program, Small Business Services, and the City of New York because it helps us meet our supplier diversity goals."

The Corporate Coaching Program is nine months in duration and will match certified small business owners with senior executives from the participating corporate partners. The senior executives will serve as one-on-one executive coaches for the small business owners in an effort to offer first-hand business advice and strategies for growth. Applications for the program are open through Monday, October 24, 2011. Interested applicants can obtain more information at http://www.nyc.gov/html/sbs/nycbiz/html/summary/course_catalog.shtml#ccp or apply directly at http://mtprawvwsbswtp1-1.nyc.gov/CAP/CAPApplication.aspx. You may also register at corporatealliance@sbs.nyc.gov to attend the Open House on Thursday, October 6th from 6:30pm-8:30pm. Please use the subject header: RSVP for Corporate Coaching Open House.

"Accenture is proud to participate in such an impactful program. We are honored to have the opportunity to work closely with the New York City Department of Small Business Services to achieve the Mayor's goal of revitalizing the economy by supporting minority and women owned businesses," said Patricia Donaldson, Accenture Senior Executive, Health & Public Service. "We have seen that both sharing best practices and providing access to these corporations lead to tremendous new opportunities and bolstered New York City's job market. We believe minority and women-owned business enterprises are, and will continue to be, the cornerstone of New York City's economic growth and sustainability."

Corporate Skills Training offers a unique opportunity for small businesses to gain access to information about how private corporations purchase goods and services. Enrollment is open to small businesses or minority- and women-owned business enterprises. The program is designed to introduce small business firms to the basic concepts of private sector business relationships, and offers corporate sponsor led workshops to enhance their skills. Registration is now open for the first session, Basic Corporate Procurement Principles, being held on Thursday, October 13th. Interested applicants can obtain more information at http://www.nyc.gov/html/sbs/nycbiz/html/summary/course_catalog.shtml#cst or register at corporatealliance@sbs.nyc.gov.

The CAP/CU Construction Mentorship Program is a unique collaboration between the City of New York, Columbia University, BNY Mellon, Con Edison, Goldman Sachs, and National Grid. The program provides both classroom instruction and hands-on business management experience to minority-, women-, and locally owned (MWL) construction-related businesses. The program helps to create new opportunities for small and medium-sized businesses in the area. After successful completion of the two-year program, which includes a one-year academic program, and a second-year of bidding and working with corporate partners, businesses will receive a Columbia University certificate.

"For the past three years, Columbia University and the City have worked together to provide minority, woman-owned and local businesses with the training, contacts and support to enhance their businesses," Joe Ienuso, Executive Vice President of Columbia University Facilities said. "Now, thanks to the Mayor's leadership, we have four additional corporations joining this initiative which will offer greater opportunities to the participating firms," he added.

The academic portion of the mentorship program is designed and administered by Columbia's School of Continuing Education. SBS will provide technical assistance and other business services to the firms enrolled in the cohort. Applications for the 2012 academic year will be accepted through November 4, 2011. To obtain an application for the CAP/CU Construction Mentorship Program visit https://app.applyyourself.com/?id=col-sce, and for more information visit http://www.nyc.gov/html/sbs/nycbiz/html/summary/course_catalog.shtml#cmp. You may also register at corporatealliance@sbs.nyc.gov to attend the Open House taking place on Wednesday, October 12th from 6-8pm. Please use the subject header: RSVP for CAP/CU Mentorship Open House. "The New York small business community is vital to driving economic growth in our city," said Timur Galen, global head of Corporate Services and Real Estate for Goldman Sachs. "Goldman Sachs is proud to partner with the City to assist small business owners through a number of initiatives, including the Corporate Alliance Program."

About the NYC Department of Small Business Services
The NYC Department of Small Business Services (SBS) makes it easier for businesses in New York City to start, operate, and expand by providing direct assistance to business owners, fostering neighborhood development in commercial districts, and linking employers to a skilled and qualified workforce. For more information on all of SBS' services go to nyc.gov.

About Accenture
Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company, with approximately 211,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries.

About American Express Company
American Express Company is a leading global payments, network and travel company founded in 1850.

About AXA Equitable
AXA Equitable is a leading financial protection company and a premier provider of life insurance, annuities and related financial services.

About BNY Mellon
BNY Mellon is a global financial services company focused on helping clients manage and service their financial assets, operating in 36 countries and serving more than 100 markets.

About Citi
Citi is a global financial services company that has approximately 200 million customer accounts and does business in more than 160 countries and jurisdictions.

About Colgate-Palmolive
Colgate-Palmolive is a global consumer products company, focused on oral care, personal care, home care and pet nutrition.

About Columbia University
Columbia University is a top research university that seeks to advance the frontiers of knowledge and foster a community deeply engaged in understanding and addressing complex global issues.

About Con Edison
Con Edison is a utility that provides electric, gas and steam service to more than 3 million customers in New York City and Westchester County, New York.

About Credit Suisse AG
Credit Suisse AG, part of the Credit Suisse group of companies, is a worldwide financial services provider.

About Goldman Sachs
Goldman Sachs is a global investment banking, securities and investment management firm that provides a wide range of financial services to a substantial and diversified client base.

About IBM
IBM is a developer and manufacturer of advanced information technologies, including computer systems, software, storage systems and microelectronics.

About National Grid
National Grid is an international energy delivery company.



  Contact: Merideth Weber (SBS): 212-513-6318 / mweber@sbs.nyc.gov  

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