A new initiative to support Black, Asian and Ethnic Minority-owned (BAME) businesses in bidding for and securing contracts for the 2022 Commonwealth Games in Birmingham has been launched.
The Inclusive Commonwealth Legacy Programme (ICLP) has been created through collaboration from the Greater Birmingham and Solihull Local Enterprise Partnership (GBSLEP), Aston University, Birmingham 2022, Commonwealth Chamber of Commerce and Legacy Centre of Excellence Birmingham.
Over 12 months, 50 BAME businesses split into two cohorts will undertake six modules as half-day workshops, alongside six peer-to-peer mentoring session.
Topics covered include measuring social value, procurement and bid tendering, and disruptive digital marketing.
The businesses will also enjoy fully funded bilateral trade membership to the Commonwealth Chamber, offering additional support through events, training and opportunities to export to Commonwealth countries.
"The West Midlands is an incredible source for aspirational businesses and we want to ensure that every business in the region is able to benefit from the opportunities that events like the Commonwealth Games can bring," Joel Blake, consultant for growing business at GBSLEP, said.
"The GBSLEP is committed to supporting projects that will drive economic growth across the region and initiatives such as the ICLP are a great example of how it is possible to ensure that opportunities for prosperity reach all of our communities."
David Grady, chief financial officer for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, added: "Businesses from across Birmingham and the West Midlands could benefit from around £300 million ($395 million/€355 million) of contracts for the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and this new initiative is a great way of ensuring that local businesses are ready to respond as soon as relevant opportunities go live.
"We're already regularly speaking to businesses across the region, about the fantastic opportunities that the Games are bringing.
"We also have nearly 7,000 potential suppliers set up to receive notifications through our business portal, but this initiative goes one step further and will provide valuable support and insight for all of the businesses involved."
Applications for the second cohort of 25 businesses are open until May 29.