Expanded resources and contracting opportunities for M/WBEs
There has never been a better time to do business with the City of New York. Recognizing the important role Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs) play throughout the five boroughs, the City is redefining how it creates opportunities for these businesses to level the playing field for all entrepreneurs, regardless of race, gender, or ethnicity. In September 2016, the City created the Office of M/WBEs to oversee M/WBE-related policy and act as a one-stop shop for M/WBEs interested in doing business with the City.
The administration is ahead of schedule on its aggressive goal to award $16 billion to M/WBEs by the end of Fiscal Year (FY) 2025, with over $6 billion awarded so far. The City is also working to bridge gaps in the value of City contracts awarded to M/WBEs and in the number of certified M/WBEs that exist in New York City, with the goals of awarding 30 percent of the value of all City contracts to M/WBEs by the end of FY 2021 and certifying 9,000 M/WBEs by the end of FY 2019. As of the end of the second quarter of FY 2018, the City has certified about 5,500 M/WBEs, and since the end of FY 2017 has awarded 11.4 percent of the value of all City contracts to M/WBEs.
New policies developed to advance these goals have yielded promising results. For the first time ever, the City awarded over $1 billion to M/WBEs in just one year—FY 2017—when only taking into account mayoral agencies. The Contract Financing Loan Fund, launched in March 2017, allows M/WBEs bidding on City contracts to apply for low-interest loans of up to $500,000. To date, $2.5 million in loans have either been distributed or are in the approval process, opening the door to over $19 million worth of contracting opportunities.
In June 2017, the administration launched the $10 million Bond Collateral Assistance Fund to help M/WBEs access surety bonds so they can successfully perform on City construction contracts. Moving forward, partnerships with designated banks will increase funding for these and other loan programs that help foster the entrepreneurial spirit of M/WBEs across the city.