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Virginia Beach event brings together small businesses and city deals

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Virginia Beach city leaders are affirming that women- and minority-owned small businesses have a chance to leave their mark on Virginia Beach.

Virginia Beach, Virginia — Owners of women- and minority-owned small businesses had the opportunity to connect directly with contracting opportunities in Virginia Beach.

Monday morning was the city’s second annual Industry Day.

Virginia Beach city leaders say they want everyone to share the pie because there’s a lot of money to come and go.

The Hive in Virginia Beach is a resource center for small business owners, entrepreneurs and job seekers. Today was the home of the SWaM Business Office Industry Day. SWaM stands for Small, Women, and Minority-owned Business.

City leaders from three city departments wanted to participate and target small business owners to bid on city contracts.

“We have public works, utilities, fire departments, and we have them here,” said Virginia Beach Purchasing Deputy LaBella Tolentino. It is our overall goal that SWaM Authorized Businesses or SWaM Businesses generally participate in city contracts. ”

Tolentino says there is one area where city leaders are particularly focused. It’s a flood.

“The city has a food protection program, called ‘Ripple Effect’. There are a lot of flood protection opportunities for companies to bid on or get to know,” she said.

This is the second time the city has hosted the event.

“To assist SWaM companies in doing joint ventures or learning about and preparing for projects,” Tolentino explained.

Katie Shannon of the city’s Public Works Engineering Sector said flooding was a priority for Virginia Beach, and her team wanted more SWaM businesses to join the deal, which could otherwise go to big companies. I said I would like to bid.

“We want to spread the money,” Shannon said.

It will also help expand the reach of the city as it addresses the ongoing labor shortage.

“We are facing these issues and we are doing a lot to combat them,” Shannon said.

The event is open to engineers, contractors, or anyone interested in doing business with the city. Attendees not only reviewed contract opportunities, but also gained insight into navigating Virginia Beach’s procurement process.

Virginia Beach Mayor Patrick Duhaney is promoting an annual Industry Day event for small businesses in the city, which will be held for the third time next year, Tolentino said. .

However, city leaders expect public works to host more such events throughout the year to meet city contracts related to flood protection programs, she added.