GROWBOSTON! GRADUATES ITS FIRST COHORT OF FIFTEEN CONTRACT-READY COMPANIES TO SUPPORT SUPPLIER CAPACITY DEVELOPMENT

BOSTON, June 30, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Today, the first GrowBoston! cohort of 15 Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprises (MWBE) will graduate at a ceremony attended by Midori Morikawa, Deputy Chief of Economic Opportunity and Inclusion, the City of Boston, Darrell Byers, CEO of Interise, and Roxann Cooke, Managing Director and Regional Director, JPMorgan Chase, New England.

This innovative partnership between the City of Boston and Interise highlights the importance of creating pathways with the Supplier Diversity Office for minority business owners and their employees. Fifteen dedicated MWBE business owners located in several Boston neighborhoods; including, Dorchester, Hyde Park, East Boston, and Roslindale, were accepted into the hands-on executive education program providing entrepreneurs intensive training in business operations, and financial management, strategy, and procurement development.

“The GrowBoston! program is an important tool for the City as we strive toward meeting our commitment to creating a more equitable economy through the awarding of lucrative contracts to diverse businesses,” said Segun Idowu, Chief of Economic Opportunity and Inclusion. “Partnerships with organizations like Interise will help us foster a more inclusive economy and provide the necessary resources for our women- and BIPOC-owned businesses to grow and thrive in the years to come.”

Interises’ proven StreetWise “MBA” curriculum has been activated within 80+ programs across the country. Successful MWBE alumni of the StreetWise ‘MBA’ program have seen increased revenues by 52% and an increase in full-time jobs by 40%, The GrowBoston! program is part of the City of Boston’s initiative to prepare Boston-based minority- and women-owned businesses for procurement success.

“We’re proud to partner with the City of Boston to support the development of a strong supplier capacity-building program for MWBE small businesses as they scale and grow,” said Darrell Byers, CEO of Interise. “GrowBoston! business owners will drive their companies to new heights and be more competitive in the marketplace.”

The program was introduced in response to a report commissioned by the city in 2021 that found that only 11 percent of Supplier Diversity Office Contracts went to businesses owned by Women or People of Color, and only 1.2 percent of those contracts went specifically to Black and Hispanic-owned businesses.

The graduation is being held at JPMorgan Chase Mattapan Community Center, 1617 Blue Hill Ave. Boston, MA 02126 on June 30th from 6:00 PM – 7:30 PM. “Congratulations to this incredible group of entrepreneurs on their success and graduation from the Interise program,” said Roxann Cooke, Consumer Bank Regional Director and Managing Director at JPMorgan Chase. “JPMorgan Chase is committed to closing the racial wealth gap and Interise’s work is driving inclusive economic growth that is both lasting and meaningful.”

For more information about GrowBoston!, visit https://programs.interise.org/growboston/. Applications are already being accepted for the next cohort scheduled to begin in Fall 2022. Committed Boston-based business owners will join interactive class sessions, peer mentoring groups, and the opportunity to learn from local experts. Business owners complete the program with a customized, three-year strategic growth plan. Interise will be running the program with the city for three years.

About Interise

Interise (http://www.interise.org) builds diverse and inclusive local economies through small business development, supporting the growth of minority-owned small businesses and small businesses located in low- and moderate-income communities. Interise contributes to inclusive economic development through its national research on the growth of established small businesses and its award-winning business development programs. As Interise companies grow, they contribute to local job creation and build community wealth. Interise companies historically create new jobs at 5x the rate of the private sector and are responsible for the creation of over 30,000 new jobs. Interise partners with government agencies, anchor institutions, and business associations to offer the StreetWise ‘MBA’™ program in 80+ cities nationwide. Strategic Growth Partners include the Kauffman Foundation, the TD Bank Foundation, the Wells Fargo Foundation, and the Prudential Foundation.

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