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MARTA forms partnership to support disadvantaged businesses

Written by Carolina Worrell

The Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority (MARTA) has formed a strategic partnership with the Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council (GMSDC) to increase the number of metro Atlanta Disadvantaged Business Enterprises (DBEs) eligible to compete for transit-related contracts.

The structure, year-long Mentor Protégé Program (MPP) is designed to level the playing field for DBEs and historically underutilized businesses seeking transportation and infrastructure contracts with MARTA, the Georgia Department of Transportation and other public/private transit entities, the Authority said.

“The Mentor Protégé Program is part of MARTA’s commitment to ensure that businesses who want to compete for transportation and infrastructure contracts have the access and opportunity to do,” said Ferdinand Risco, Executive Director of MARTA’s Office of Diversity and Equal Opportunity (DEO). “By linking small businesses with our prime contractors, we can be a catalyst for business partnerships and joint-venture opportunities beyond the walls of the Authority.”

The MPP will pair DBEs with some of MARTA’s prime contractors for the purposes of networking and relationship building. Protégé firms will also receive expert guidance from MARTA’s Office of DEO about building capacity, enhancing their business skills and broadening their knowledge of federal regulations.

As MARTA’s partner, GMSDC will screen protégé candidates and administer the program. To learn more about the MPP and eligibility requirements, DBEs are required to attend one of two informational webinars hosted by GMSDC on July 9, 2015. The deadline for DBEs to apply for the MPP is August 7, 2015.

A subsequent DBE Forum will be held at MARTA Headquarters on July 16, 2015 to discuss the scope of the MPP and certification guidelines.

To attend the 11 a.m. webinar on July 9, register online at http://july9th-11am.eventbrite.com.

To attend the 2 p.m. webinar on July 9, register online at http://july9th-2pm.eventbrite.com.

To attend the 2 p.m. DBE Forum on July 16, RSVP to: [email protected]

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