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Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Becomes First Investor in Greater New England Minority Supplier Development Council's (GNEMSDC) Development Program for Minority Owned Businesses

BOSTON -- The Greater New England Minority Supplier Development Council (GNEMSDC) has received a commitment from Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts (Blue Cross), the state's largest not-for-profit health plan, to invest $50,000 to enhance the content and delivery of GNEMSDC's Development Program for minority owned businesses. The Development Program, focused on companies "certified" as a minority business enterprise (MBE) by GNEMSDC, includes three elements: One-on-One Business Consulting; Subject Matter Training on areas that include financial management, process improvement, strategic planning, and marketing; and the GNEMSDC Advanced Leadership Program which utilizes the Kaufman Foundation's FastTrac curriculum.

With this investment from Blue Cross and expected investments from other leading organizations, GNEMSDC will expand the scope of its Development Program beyond just the 250 currently certified MBEs in New England, and will enhance its content, staffing, and deliverables.

"We hope that this investment by Blue Cross will lead to financial support from others in New England and allow us to continue to build an even more effective Development Program to make New England's minority businesses stronger," said Peter Hurst, the President and CEO of GNEMSDC. "Minority business development helps reduce the country's racial wealth gap, and our MBE Development Program has contributed to the health and growth of our MBEs. COVID 19's adverse impact on minority owned businesses requires a laser-like focus on the levers that drive MBEs' success, including: access to contracts with buyers in the private sector and the public sector; access to intellectual capital that allows MBEs' owners to be more effective leaders and managers; and access to financial capital that supports their growth, whether one contract at a time or through mergers and acquisitions."

"Supporting the economic health of our diverse communities is a business imperative for Blue Cross. Taking action to address racial and economic inequity is not just the right thing to do, it's good business," said Andrew Dreyfus, President and CEO of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. "We're proud to be the first company to pledge our support for the GNEMSDC's new initiative to help minority-owned companies grow and encourage other employers to consider supporting this important effort."