People in businesses of color served by the Ascend network exceed $2 billion in contracts

SEATTLE–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today, Ascend announced that people of color in companies served by its national network have passed the $2 billion mark in contracts, according to independent research by Equitable Evaluation Practice (EEP). This step precedes a new cohort activation with national corporate collaborators.

The new national program is accelerating the growth of local businesses through its M3 Modelhelping businesses increase their access to markets through contracting opportunities, management skills through mentoring, and access to money through loans and investments.

Ascend’s network has worked in 13 cities to support businesses owned by people of color through contracting opportunities with local businesses, universities and hospitals. Now, Ascend is turning its attention to outsourcing opportunities in the national and global corporate sector by launching the Ascend National Cohort with the aim of increasing the competitiveness of minority-owned businesses that could serve as suppliers to organizations such as as JPMorgan Chase, Ernst & Young LLP (EY US), The Boeing Company, T-Mobile and others. The Ascend National Cohort will receive support directly from these supporters (or organizations), including coaching and business advisory services.

Additionally, the Ascend National Cohort will bring together academic partners from Fisher College of Business at Ohio State University, Foster School of Business at the University of Washington, and Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. These institutions will provide access to Masters of Business Administration (MBA) students and executive training.

Quotes from the national program director, a program participant and national cohort partners:

“Ascend addresses systemic barriers to accessing capital, outsourcing opportunities and developing management skills. The Ascend National Cohort strengthens companies by preparing them to showcase their products and services and seize contracting opportunities to expand into larger markets,” said Michael Verchot, Director of the Consulting and Business Development Center at the University of Washington and national leader. of Ascension.

“Johnson Security Bureau, Inc. recently completed the Ascend Regional cohort, which has helped our team increase sales and impact. After working regularly at Columbia University as a contractor for the past 12 years, Johnson Security has secured direct work with Columbia University Irving Medical Center as a result of the regional Ascend program,” said Jessica Johnson, founder of Johnson Security Bureau. “Now we join the Ascend National Cohort in hopes of adding business resources to our toolkit, particularly in the areas of markets, management skills and money. We anticipate additional wins as and as the program progresses.

“Corporate supply chains have enormous potential to catalyze the growth of diverse businesses,” said Ted Archer, global head of business partner diversity at JPMorgan Chase. “For years, Ascend has provided essential resources to minority-owned businesses, which has led to business opportunities in local markets. Now, with a nationwide cohort, Ascend supports our supplier development efforts with a variety of well positioned for even greater scale.

“Our commitment is to inspire diverse suppliers to think big and be confident in their ability to deliver high-quality products and services that meet our needs. Through our Environmental Social Governance Services initiative, we aim to create a distinctive experience for suppliers by teaming up to help develop innovative solutions and strategies and accelerating possibilities as we respond with a diverse mindset to customers, customers and the communities around us,” says Larry Phelan , Global Head of Supply Chain at EY.

“Being part of the Ascend National Cohort is a privilege and fits well with our executive education program at The Ohio State University Fisher College of Business. problem-solving. By joining forces with the Ascend National Cohort, you are merging the curriculum of three outstanding universities to deliver a world-class education. We are thrilled and extremely grateful to be part of this innovative and collaborative group, and we are look forward to shaping a bright future for businesses owned by people of color,” said Renard Green, program director, and James Hill, Ph.D., chairman of the Department of Operations and Business Analytics at Fisher College of Business from Ohio State University, partner of the Ascend Cities program.

“The Ascend National Cohort Business Growth Program incorporates successful best practices from the prominent programs at Fisher, Foster and Kellogg Schools, combined with the expertise of highly supportive business associates, JPMorgan Chase, EY and RSM,” said Michele. Rogers, manager of Chicago. Partnerships at Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and Ascend partner. “Kellogg’s focus on leadership, organizations and markets has been a factor in the minority business landscape since the beginning of our targeted high-growth entrepreneur program in 1996. We are honored that 950 entrepreneurs from minorities and women have completed our business growth programs at Northwestern University. . We are excited to continue making an impact with this highly touted Ascend National Cohort Team.

About Ascend:

Ascend started locally in Seattle in 2016 as an initiative of the Center for Business Development & Consulting at the University of Washington’s Michael G. Foster School of Business. The program has expanded with funding from JP Morgan Chase and continues to work in cities nationwide, adding the next phase with the Ascend National Cohort. Ascend is a national network of local ecosystems joining forces to best support businesses owned by entrepreneurs of color. Ascend understands 13 cities plus the national Ascend cohort and supports companies through its M3 Model. This model helps companies increase their access to mmarkets thanks to contractualization opportunities, mmanagement skills through mentorship and access to money through loans and investments. Until June 2022, Ascend has supported 1,153 businesses and helped businesses acquire 319 contracts. Between 2019 and 2021, Ascend has helped more than 80 people from color-owned businesses grow beyond the $1 million revenue level, 20 beyond the $5 million level, and eight beyond from the $10 million level.

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