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MINORITY BUSINESS IS BIG BUSINESS AT PEPSI-COLA

 MINORITY BUSINESS IS BIG BUSINESS AT PEPSI-COLA
 LANSING, Mich., May 12 /PRNewswire/ -- A unique gathering of local


government, civic and business leaders on Thursday, May 14, from noon-2 p.m., will assist the Pepsi-Cola Company in identifying Lansing- area minority businesses which would like to secure contracts with this Fortune 100 corporation.
 Representatives from the NAACP, City of Lansing, Lansing Urban League, the Michigan Minority Business Development Council and Michigan State University's Minority Supplier Development Office and others will meet with Pepsi managers to devise ways to expand the company's supplier base and further stimulate minority economic development in Lansing.
 As a follow-up to this session, Pepsi will host a Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) "LINK" with area managers on Friday, May 15, from 8:30 a.m.-noon at the Lansing Center, 333 E. Michigan Ave. More than 100 local firms are scheduled to meet face to face with Pepsi managers from all lines of business, including manufacturing, finance, distribution and marketing. This regional meeting is part of Pepsi- Cola's national effort to create opportunities for minority firms to bid for contracts by determining how the company might best use their services, explain the bidding process and make efforts to help MBEs meet internal standards. Pepsi's Lansing MBE program is the 25th "LINK" held in the past five years.
 According to Betty Darrell, director of supplier development, "Pepsi-Cola Company believes strongly that all community components can work together toward enhancement of local minority businesses, ultimately improving the health, social and economic well-being of the community through participation in the 'LINK' program."
 The "LINK" program broadens Pepsi's base of financially sound vendors who offer quality merchandise, on-time delivery, competitive pricing and efficient follow-through. Last year alone, Pepsi spent more than $87 million with over 1,000 minority companies. Since initiation of the MBE program in 1982, Pepsi has spent over $500 million with minority suppliers.
 The overall objective of the "LINK" is to drastically increase the volume of dollars Pepsi-Cola spends on products and services offered by minority companies. Since 1986, the "LINK" program alone has brought together Pepsi managers and more than 1,400 minority businesses in major metropolitan markets including Los Angeles, Atlanta, Tulsa (Okla.), Orlando (Fla.), San Antonio, Detroit, Phoenix, San Francisco, Houston, Baltimore, Philadelphia, Indianapolis and Cleveland.
 "It's important that we capture accurate numbers of our dollar expenditures with minority businesses and determine how Pepsi-Cola can impact upon minority community development, thus creating a healthier marketplace for our bottlers throughout the country," Darrell said.
 -0- 5/12/92
 /NOTE: One-on-one interviews and photo opportunities are available throughout the day. CONTACT: Daphne McDuffie of JDA Enterprises, Inc., 313-961-7835, for Pepsi-Cola Company/
 (PEP) CO: Pepsi-Cola Company ST: Michigan IN: FOD SU:


ML-KK -- DE023 -- 9162 05/12/92 13:04 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:May 12, 1992
Words:461
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