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Department of Small Business Services Begins Strategic Steps for Growth

A Program for New York City’s Minority and Women Business Owners.

Manhattan – The New York City Department of Small Business Services (SBS), the New York City Council, and the Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at New York University (NYU) Leonard N. Stern School of Business today held the first class of Strategic Steps for Growth, a premiere executive management training program for minority and women business owners.

Fifteen participants were selected by committee from over sixty applications. Together these fifteen firms represent over $43 million in annual sales and employ 236 people.

Participants will work with business experts, university professors and each other to clearly define a pathway for their company’s growth. They will learn the strategic skills needed to run a growing business and by the end of the nine-month program, each business owner will have created a custom three-year Strategic Growth Action PlanTM. The program also provides participants with a business network which will enable them to access support for every aspect of their business operation going forward.

Owners of the following fifteen companies start Strategic Steps for Growth this evening at NYU:

Allied Personnel Services – Forest Hills-based staffing firm that wants to be the premiere staffing firm in Queens.

Apex Building Company – Harlem-based construction and development firm that specializes in affordable housing.

Citadel NY, Inc. – Lower Manhattan-based technology firm that offers call center staffing, software development, and other IT services and supplies.

Continental Food & Beverage – Second-generation Midtown food distribution company that is the exclusive distributor of Inca Cola (the most popular cola in Peru) in the United States.

Different Roads to Learning – Flatiron-based company developing educational content for institutions that teach children with autism.

Ebony Market Research – Co-Op City-based market research firm that specialize in research for marketing communications and ad campaigns.

Grigsby & Associates – Lower Manhattan-based investment management firm; the world’s largest minority-owned investment banking firm specializing in services for state and local governments.

InfoPeople – Wall Street-based technology firm that offers IT staffing and enterprise services.

International Asbestos Removal – Woodside-based asbestos removal company focused on transitioning their services to a ‘green’ delivery standard.

National Prosthetic Orthotic Associates - Bayside-based manufacturing company that is one of the few custom prostheses manufacturers and suppliers in New York City.

Prestige Industry Corp – Long Island City-based waste removal company that provides on-call waste container service to the five boroughs.

Professional Line Painting – Mott Haven-based company providing traffic marking services to streets, airports and parking facilities throughout the five boroughs.

The Maia Strategy Group – Lower Manhattan-based company that provides strategy consulting to Fortune 500 companies.

The Urban Group – Woodhaven-based built-in furniture maker and office supply distributor.

TMT Restoration – Chelsea-based architecture firm with a specialty in historic renovations.

In order to be eligible for the program, businesses must be certified with the City as a Minority or Women-owned Business Enterprise (M/WBE). In 2005, Mayor Bloomberg signed legislation creating the M/WBE program to help certified businesses access contracting opportunities and build capacity. In the first three years of the program, certified M/WBEs won more than $1.2 billion in prime and subcontracts with the City of New York. In support of Strategic Steps for Growth, the New York City Council has contributed $15,000 worth of scholarships for this program.

Strategic Steps for Growth incorporates an award-winning curriculum currently offered in 25 U.S. cities and developed by Interise, a Boston-based nonprofit.. The curriculum provides a clear path for accelerating growth by offering a diverse group of small business owners entrepreneurial education, connections, and access to new markets.

Following completion of the program, 64 percent of participants report hiring new employees, and 59 percent increased revenues. Participants also secured $23 million in new capital and over $50 million in new government contracts. The Berkley Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation at NYU Stern School of Business will host the program. The school’s faculty will teach the classes and serve as subject matter experts.

Applications are not being accepted at this time, but interested candidates can email strategicsteps@sbs.nyc.gov to be placed on a notification list when the next round of recruiting is launched. More information is also available at www.nyc.gov/strategicsteps.

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