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Study finds 'Managing Growth' classes work.

An assessment of state and local government Minority Business Development programs prepared for the U.S. Department of Commerce has concluded that the "Managing Growth" program of The Regional Alliance for Small Contractors directly helps minority contractors win contracts as well as increase their business skills.

The report was prepared by Dr. Timothy, Bates, a nationally known expert on minority entrepreneurship and chairman of the Urban Policy and Analysis Program for the New School for Social Research Graduate School.

"Managing Growth" is a six-week series of courses on such topics as bidding strategies, project management, financial management, and how to deal with public agencies. The classes are offered by the Regional Alliance, a partnership of public agencies and private construction firms in New York and, New Jersey formed to help minority-owned, women-owned and other small contractors expand their businesses.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, Dormitory Authority of New York State, New York City School Construction Authority and New Jersey Department of Transportation are among the Regional Alliance's public partners. Private partners include Lehrer McGovern Bovis, Morse Diesel International and O'BrienKreitzberg & Associates.

Minority contractors who took "Managing Growth" classes won over 10 times the dollar value of contracts from the Port Authority in 1992 than minority contractors on the Port Authority's vendor list who did not, Professor Bates concluded.

The 1992 "Managing Growth" contractors who were surveyed won a total of $5.2 million in bids awarded by the Port Authority, while a random sample of contractors from the Port, Authority vendor list who did not attend won only, $410,000 in contracts. Four prime contractors and eight subcontractors from "Managing Growth" won bids, in contrast to one prime contractor and two subcontractors who did not take "Managing Growth."

In 1991, "Managing Growth" contractors won a total of $3.1 million in Port Authority bids, while non-attendees won a total of $824,000 in contracts, representing three prime contractors and eight subcontractors versus no prime contractors and four subcontractors.

Professor Bates conducted a survey of minority contractors who took "Managing Growth" classes from fall 1990 to fall 1991.

Findings of the survey include: *82 percent of the contractors rated the classes as very important or somewhat important in their ability to win contracts and manage projects *85 percent of the contractors rated the classes as very important or somewhat important in affecting their ability to market their firms; *70 percent of the contractors indicated they had talked business and exchanged information with other class attendees *26 percent of the contractors said they had sub-contracted with or been a subcontractor for other class attendees.
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Title Annotation:U.S. Department of Commerce makes assessment of Minority Business Development programs, concludes that 'Managing Growth' program presented by The Regional Alliance for Small Contractors helps minority contractors with business skills; serving New York and New Jersey
Publication:Real Estate Weekly
Date:Jun 9, 1993
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