Posted at 1:01 PM
In conjunction with Minority Enterprise Development (MED) Week, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker delivered the keynote address at the National Minority Supplier Development Council (NMSCD) Conference. The annual NMSDC Conference and Business Opportunity Exchange attracts more than 6,000 corporate CEOs, procurement executives, entrepreneurs, influencers, business leaders, and supplier diversity professionals from the top multinational companies, international organizations and minority firms.
During her keynote address, Secretary Pritzker celebrated the growth of minority-owned enterprises, underscoring their role in strengthening the U.S. economy. She noted that minority businesses still face unique challenges and too few are competing in high-growth and high-tech fields.
Secretary Pritzker highlighted the Minority Business Development Agency’s new Innovation Inclusion Initiative, which will increase opportunities for minority entrepreneurs and businesses to compete in cutting edge industries like the Internet of Things and advanced manufacturing. Additionally, Secretary Pritzker emphasized how minority-owned enterprises, which are twice as likely to export their products then nonminority firms, are uniquely positioned to benefit from the enactment of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
Secretary Pritzker then heard from supplier companies directly when she took a tour of the Business Opportunity Exchange expo. The Technology Integration Group (TIG), PS Energy Group Inc., and Bridgeforth Wolf & Associates all spoke about the various approaches they have used to grow supplier diversity and increase the number of minority firms in the global corporate supply chain.