Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce Launches Brooklyn Connects

April 30, 2014

Brooklyn Connects Provides Procurement Assistance to Brooklyn Businesses, Emphasis on Women, Minority and Veteran Owned Businesses

The Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce today announced the launch of its Brooklyn Connects program. Brooklyn Connects is the Chamber’s effort to provide comprehensive procurement assistance to Brooklyn businesses.  Brooklyn Connects enables new, as well as established Brooklyn business owners, to learn about bidding opportunities for Government contracting and purchasing at the Federal, State and Local levels, as well as in the private sector.  A special emphasis is placed on providing specific technical assistance to Women and Minority-Owned Businesses (MWBE) and veterans. The service is available exclusively to members of the Chamber of Commerce.

“Navigating government and private sector procurement processes can be daunting, but securing these contracts can be huge for any business,” said Chamber President Carlo A. Scissura. “Contracts mean a stable source of income, increased visibility, and for many small businesses it means instant legitimacy. Brooklyn Connects is all about making sure Brooklyn’s businesses are out in front when it comes to making the winning bid.”

“We are committed to giving our members the access they need to increase awareness, make connections, and grow their business,” said Denise Arbesu, Senior Vice President at Citibank and Chamber Board of Directors Chair. “Brooklyn Connects is another tool in our toolbox to keep Brooklyn’s businesses thriving.”

“Brooklyn Connects levels the playing field for businesses of all sizes and provides an enormous boost for those looking to establish themselves by securing a contract,” said Renee V. McClure, National Grid Manager of Community and Customer Management and co-Chair of the Chamber’s WMBE Committee. “By launching this initiative, the Chamber is giving many companies, which include MWBE and veteran owned businesses, the tools they need to take their business to the next level.”

“By emphasizing assistance to women and minority owned businesses through Brooklyn Connects, the Chamber of Commerce is helping to create opportunity for a population that has been historically underrepresented when it comes to awarding government contracts,” said Juliet Lewis, Con Edison Manager of Public Affairs and co-Chair of the Chamber’s WMBE Committee. “The Chamber is committed to helping ensure businesses in the contracting world are as diverse and talented as Brooklyn.”

The Chamber ran a similar program by the same name for several years. The new incarnation has been re-tooled and will conduct targeted outreach to industry-specific businesses in the Chamber’s membership.

Assistance to members includes one-on-one technical assistance, a searchable database of city, state and federal procurement opportunities, events and workshops, and a referral network.

The Chamber, which operates the Brooklyn Business Solutions Center on behalf of the City’s Department of Small Business Services, will also be able to connect members with the help they need navigating the MWBE certification process and assistance with securing contract-based financing.

“Brooklyn Connects is an opportunity not just for our members, but for every business out there who is putting a contract out to bid,” said Scissura. “I encourage all businesses to leverage the Chamber’s unique position and let us know when you need a vendor. With over 1,600 members, we can make the referral you need to get the job done right.”

Members can access Brooklyn connects through the Chamber’s website: