Technical Assistance, Other Services to be Offered at Local Event for Small and Minority-Owned Businesses

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Minority Business Development Agency, USVI Economic Development Authority

to Host Small Business Recovery & Growth Event this Week on St. Croix and St. Thomas

CHARLOTTE AMALIE, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands – May 1, 2018 – Owners and representatives of small and minority-owned businesses in the U.S. Virgin Islands will have an opportunity to receive additional help in the form of

  • free, one-on-one technical assistance,
  • advice on how to prepare their business for a natural disaster,
  • information on new tax incentives for small businesses
  • and more

at a “Small Business Recovery & Growth Event” which will be hosted by the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) Export Center and Disaster Assistance  Program, in partnership with the U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority (USVIEDA).

This free event will be held on Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at Gertrudes’ Restaurant at 114 Castle Coakley in Christiansted, St. Croix, USVI; and on Thursday, May 3, 2018 at the University of the Virgin Islands (St. Thomas campus) at the Administration and Conference Center (ACC), at No. 2 John Brewers Bay on St. Thomas, USVI.  This event will be held from 5PM to 8:30PM on both islands. Owners and representatives of USVI small and minority-owned businesses that were adversely affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria in September 2017, along with representatives of small and minority-owned businesses that were not affected by the hurricanes, are invited to attend.

The USVI small and minority-owned business community will also receive information on

  • options for federal and local financing,
  • exporting,
  • procurement and contracting opportunities, along with
  • other support services

for their business.   Attendees will also learn how the MBDA can help them to do business with the federal government, and much more.

MBDA representatives will also connect with agencies that have been involved with the disaster recovery process in the USVI.  In addition to presenters from the MBDA and the USVIEDA, representatives from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), U.S. Small Business Administration (U.S. SBA), USVI government agencies, and local public and private-sector lending institutions will also be at the event to speak to attendees on topics in their respective areas of professional expertise, and will also share advice and answer questions.  USVIEDA representatives look forward to working with the MBDA Export Center and Disaster Assistance Initiatives and other supporting agencies and organizations during this event to assist USVI small and minority-owned businesses.

“It is certainly a pleasure to collaborate with the Minority Business Development Agency and its Export and Disaster Assistance Programs for this event,” said Wayne L. Biggs, Jr., acting USVIEDA chief executive officer.  “Working together with the MBDA and other various agencies and organizations that provide support services for small businesses will only serve in the best interest of our local, small-business community. This event is an opportunity for us as Territory to embrace, especially now since the USVI is in the process of rebuilding after experiencing two major hurricanes in September 2017.  Our Territory is gradually re-energizing its economy through the activities of our local businesses which have either been restored or established, added USVIEDA Acting CEO Biggs, Jr.”

The USVI is among other locations that are receiving assistance from the MBDA since the impact of the 2017 hurricanes.

According to Marie Gill, “As Operator of one of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency’s Export and Technical Assistance Centers in Florida, we have been tasked with reaching out to small and minority-owned businesses in South Florida, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands to provide technical assistance, and especially to small and minority-owned businesses that have been adversely affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.”

Ms. Gill added, “We are delighted to sponsor and co-host these events in the U.S. Virgin Islands to give the MBDA an opportunity to participate in the post-hurricane recovery and rebuilding processes.  We are highly focused on developing, strengthening and growing small and minority-owned businesses by facilitating access to capital, access to contracts, and access to new and global markets.”

To register for the “Small Business Recovery & Growth Event”, owners and representatives of small and minority-owned businesses can call the Minority Business Development Agency at 786-515-0670, register online at https://mbda-usviedabusinessevent.eventbrite.com or by email at admin@miamimbdacenter.com  .  Walk-in attendees can also register onsite at the event.

 

About the U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority.   The U.S. Virgin Islands Economic Development Authority (USVIEDA) is a semi-autonomous governmental instrumentality [of the Government of the Virgin Islands] that was created on February 1, 2001.  It is responsible for the promotion and enhancement of economic development of the United States Virgin Islands. The USVIEDA assumes, integrates and unifies the functions of these four entities:  Economic Development Commission, Virgin Islands Economic Development Park Corporation, Economic Development Bank and the Enterprise Zone Commission.  The USVIEDA accomplishes its mission by attracting multi-national investors to the Territory to establish or relocate their business in the U.S. Virgin Islands.  It also provides financial assistance for new and existing small to medium-sized businesses in the Territory and assists V.I. residents and business owners with rehabilitating their properties located in blighted and distressed areas that were once vibrant economic centers of activity in the Territory. Learn more about the USVIEDA at www.usvieda.org.

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