WMU News

Battle Creek forum offers contacts with government buyers

Aug. 8, 2003

KALAMAZOO -- Does your business offer something the public sector needs? The 2003 Business Opportunity Forum in Battle Creek Thursday, Aug. 21, will connect businesses of all sizes with federal, state and local government buyers.

Sponsored in part by the Michigan Economic Development Corp. and Western Michigan University's Southwest Michigan Technical Assistance Center, the 2003 Business Opportunity Forum will take place from 9 a.m. to noon at the Regional Manufacturing Technology Center in the Fort Custer Industrial Park. The event is free and open to the public and reservations are not required.

"The state of Michigan alone contracts for scores of products and services, from snow removal and advertising services to fuel, alarms and office supplies," says Michael Black, director of the Southwest Michigan TAC. "This forum will connect business representatives not only with the state, but also with a wide variety of federal, state and local agencies that buy products and services. If you're considering expanding your market into the government sector, these are important contacts you'll need to be successful."

Similar to a trade fair, the forum will include short sessions and time for business representatives to meet one-on-one with buyers who need their products or services. Attendees will learn how to register as a vendor with the state of Michigan, how state and local agencies buy goods and services, how to bid on state projects and how minority and woman-owned firms can get certified, among other topics. Buyers and representatives on hand will include six state agencies, the Small Business Administration and the Internal Revenue Service, the cities of Grand Rapids and Allendale, and Western Michigan University.

The event is one of 15 Business Opportunity Forums being held around the state this summer and fall. More information about the forums and directions to the Regional Manufacturing Technology Center can be found online at <www.michigan.gov/doingbusiness>.

Under the umbrella of WMU's Haworth College of Business and its Office of Business Development Services, the Southwest Michigan Technical Assistance Center offers free assistance to area companies interested in doing business with the government. Annually, Black and his staff help businesses secure more than $28 million in government contracts.

Media contact: Jessica English, 269 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

WMU News
Office of University Relations
Western Michigan University
1903 W Michigan Ave
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5433 USA
269 387-8400