Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Join WEDA
News & Press: WEDC Corner

November 2016: WEDC Corner

Friday, November 25, 2016   (0 Comments)
Share |

Marketplace 2016 Conference on Minority Business Development Set for December

Statewide conference enables businesses to meet government and corporate buyers, connect with lenders and business resources

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) is hosting the 35th annual statewide conference for minority, woman and veteran-owned businesses Dec. 13-14 at Potawatomi Hotel and Conference Center in Milwaukee.

The conference is expected to draw more than 700 attendees and is sponsored by corporations, small businesses and organizations, with Town Bank being this year’s Keystone Sponsor.

Marketplace is the premier annual statewide business capacity building conference for minority, woman and veteran business owners looking to do business with state, federal and local governments as well as corporations. The conference provides opportunities for businesses to meet with dozens of potential buyers, identify funding sources, connect with business assistance resources and network with other businesses.

The conference kicks off Dec. 13 with the popular Small Business Academy for new businesses and entrepreneurs. This free half-day training academy will provide participants with practical advice from experts on topics such as social media marketing, bookkeeping, securing financing, and hiring and training employees.

Additional free workshops on contracting and certification will be offered the afternoon of Dec. 13, followed by a networking reception recognizing minority and woman-owned businesses celebrating their 25th anniversary.

On Dec. 14, the conference begins with a breakfast program followed by the opening of the Expo Hall, where attendees can meet one-on-one with potential buyers, connect with business lenders, view exhibits and network with other business owners.

The Governor’s Award Luncheon on Dec.14, sponsored by US Bank, will recognize outstanding businesses owned by minorities, women and service-disabled veterans. More than 250 nominations were received this year for businesses of all sizes and from a diverse range of industries across the state.

The individual cost is $60 for both days, with a $20 additional fee for the Dec. 13 evening reception. Discounts are available for minority, woman and veteran-owned businesses. Buyers and supplier diversity managers from government agencies and private corporations attending to meet potential suppliers can register at no charge.

Registration and detailed information are available at www.marketplacewisconsin.com.

 

Application Period Now Open for Fab Lab Grants

Grant helps public schools equip fabrication laboratories; application deadline is December 15

Governor Scott Walker and the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) announced today that WEDC is now accepting applications for the Fabrication Laboratories (Fab Lab) Grant Program, which provides funding to help public schools build or expand Fab Labs that provide students with training on valuable job skills.

“The overwhelming response we received from school districts in the first round of funding for this program made it clear there is a need to expand it to even more districts this school year,” Governor Walker said. “Fab Labs give students real-life experience in the global economy before they graduate from high school and provide them with the skills they will need to compete for the jobs of the future.”

The WEDC program supports hands-on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education by assisting public school districts with equipment purchases for instructional and educational purposes in Fab Labs. Fab Labs are high-tech workshops with the latest equipment including computer-controlled manufacturing components, such as 3-D printers, laser engravers and computer numerical control routers.

WEDC’s investment in the program puts Fab Labs within reach for schools that might not otherwise have the financial means to install such facilities.

In May 2016, grants totaling $600,000 were awarded to 25 school districts in the first year of the program. WEDC is allocating another $500,000 in this fiscal year and anticipates awarding 20 grants this time around. Grant recipients will be announced in spring 2017.

WEDC will provide grants of up to $25,000 to public school districts or up to $50,000 to consortiums of two or more districts for the creation or expansion of Fab Labs. The funds may be used to purchase equipment used for instructional and educational purposes by elementary, middle, junior high, or high school students. Applicants must match the amount of funding provided by WEDC.

Fab Lab grants will be awarded through a competitive process, with applicants evaluated based on readiness and long-range planning, curriculum, business and community partnerships, financial need and previous awards.

In this round of funding, WEDC is requiring award recipients to make the Fab Labs accessible to the public, so the schools can offer training and workshops to members of the community after school hours. This facet of the program is expected to drive innovation throughout the community.

“Fab Labs will help boost economic development by sparking innovation among entrepreneurs, inventors and small businesses through community partnerships,” said Mark Hogan, Secretary and CEO of WEDC. “We look forward to seeing how schools develop programs that benefit not only students but local entrepreneurs as well.”

Governor Walker’s Fab Lab announcement comes as more than a dozen state agencies and organizations are marking Manufacturing Month with events throughout October. While students in Fab Labs will develop the types of skills that will help them thrive in any industry, those skills are increasingly important in the evolution of the next generation of manufacturing.

“With 9,500 manufacturers in Wisconsin, there is, and will continue to be, an increased need for highly skilled workers in the industry, and we need to ensure a robust talent pipeline in the years to come,” Governor Walker said. “The Fab Labs Grant Program is just one of the many ways Wisconsin is working to address that demand.”

Application information can be found at www.inwisconsin.com/fablabs. The deadline for submission is December 15.

 

WEDC Seeks Companies for China Trade Venture
To help Wisconsin companies reach new markets

The Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC) invites representatives from Wisconsin companies to join a trade venture to China March 18-25, 2017. The trade venture will include visits to Shanghai, Tianjin and Beijing, China’s three top cities for global business connections.

With a greater metropolitan area population of 34 million, Shanghai is China’s business and financial hub. Located in eastern China at the mouth of the Yangtze River, it is home to the world’s busiest container port. Tianjin is China’s fourth-largest city and one of its fastest-growing cities. Located half an hour from Beijing by high-speed train, it is a hub for advanced industries and finance and is also a major seaport. Beijing, the capital of China, has a metro area population of 25 million and is home to more Fortune Global 500 companies than any other city in the world.

“China is an important market for Wisconsin exports, including medical and scientific instruments, industrial machinery and electrical machinery,” said WEDC Vice President of International Business Development Katy Sinnott. “Wisconsin’s leadership in these areas and our well-known manufacturing and research capabilities create exciting business opportunities for globally minded companies in our state.”

In each city, participating companies will be scheduled for customized business meetings with potential local partners hand-picked for their companies by Wisconsin’s authorized trade representatives in China. Meetings in other nearby cities may also be arranged depending on the companies’ needs.

The fee for this program is $2,000, which covers market research and one-on-one appointments, transportation to business meetings, hotel accommodations for the duration of the program, country briefings and some group meals.

The program registration deadline is Feb. 6, 2017. For more information, visit Inwisconsin.com/china2017.


Membership Software Powered by YourMembership  ::  Legal