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$1B Global Contract Program to Aid Minorities

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

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Minority-owned construction contractors and suppliers may compete for $1 billion in contracts around the world in a new public-private venture designed to provide training and procurement opportunities.

The Global Construction Program will prepare 150 high-capacity, minority-owned and -operated general contractors, subcontractors and suppliers to compete for construction opportunities worldwide, organizers say.

The program is the first created to globalize the U.S. minority-owned construction industry by providing education, mentoring and procurement opportunities to minority-owned firms. Firms that complete the program will have the opportunity to compete for a minimum of $1 billion in Tutor Perini Corp. contracts—primarily international contracts—over a four-year period.

Tutor Perini developed the Global Construction Program in cooperation with the U.S. Commerce Department; the Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA); the International Trade Administration (ITA); and the University of Southern California’s School of Policy, Planning and Development.

Founded in 1894, California-based Tutor Perini is one of the nation’s largest global construction conglomerates.

“At the Tutor Perini Corporation, we pride ourselves on being a leader in diversity initiatives and truly believe this partnership will be a win-win for minority-owned construction firms and for us,” said executive vice president Richard Rizzo. “For years, we have developed a series of programs to foster the growth and success of minority-owned firms. This program provides the next level of support by helping these firms go global.”

Commerce Secretary Dennis Hightower said the program “could not be more relevant in today’s economy, where global competition is tougher than ever before. President Obama has set a goal of doubling exports over the next five years through his National Export Initiative, and we need every stakeholder in America actively engaged in re-building our economy to create new jobs.”

MBDA national director David A. Hinson said the program is “designed to provide minority-owned firms with access to relationships, technical training, and skills to compete in the construction industry worldwide. This is the first time in history that minority businesses will have access to global construction opportunities.”

Hinson said the program was the first in a series “designed to increase employment and capacity in the minority business sector.”

The program will include comprehensive quantitative and qualitative needs assessments, classroom training and distance learning. The distance learning will including webinars and online self-study through USC; field and on-the-job training provided through Tutor Perini; and training on federal certifications that will allow participants to work on U.S. government-supported construction projects internationally.

“This partnership between USC, private business and the federal government will create thousands of new jobs within minority-owned construction companies by providing instruction, access and opportunity,” said Tom Sayles, USC’s vice president of government and community relations. “This program will create a path to compete for an estimated $1 billion in contracts all over the world in the next four years.”

Next Level Diversity LLC will administer the program; Ralph G. Moore & Associates will conduct the needs assessments; and ITA will provide training on its global services and the global construction industry.

The cost of the program is $10,000 for general contractors and $7,500 for subcontractors and suppliers. The first class is scheduled to begin Oct. 3, 2010.

Firms applying to participate in the program must meet a number of criteria regarding ownership and experience. For more information or to apply, e-mail with Global Construction Program in the Subject line. Include company and contact name; scope of work (including CSI code); telephone and fax numbers; and physical, email and website addresses.


Tagged categories: Construction; Contractors; Economy; Worker training

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