More than 100 companies looking to increase spending with Detroit businesses recently attended Meet the Buyer, the first in-person matchmaking event hosted by BuyDetroit. Local suppliers representing a variety of sectors staffed booths in Detroit’s Beacon Park to promote their businesses and make connections with top buyers.
BuyDetroit, a program of DEGC and Detroit Means Business, is the single source for buyers, suppliers and contractors of all sizes and categories to connect, post and apply for new opportunities. In turn, the program helps create new jobs in the city, drive access and inclusion, build local business capacity, and grow Detroit’s economy.
Thanks to sponsors DTE and First Independence Bank, Meet the Buyer brought together Detroit’s procurement community to facilitate real, in-person connections between buyers from some of our city’s largest firms and local suppliers looking for new opportunities. This allowed procurement officers to evaluate pre-qualified local suppliers — right on the spot.
Those evaluations will assist in identifying the businesses selected to advance in the process of getting a contract. In late August, suppliers moving forward will have the opportunity to meet with advisors to better understand their capacity, financials and overall business acumen as it relates to the qualities buyers really want. Qualifying businesses will move on to the “Pitch the Buyer” event in November.
Meet the Buyer attracted local businesses representing the fields of education, cleaning and maintenance, manufacturing, professional services, healthcare, IT and construction. Corporate buyers represented DTE, Comerica Bank, Detroit Public Schools, North America Bridge Company, Henry Ford Health Systems, the City of Detroit, Olympia Entertainment, and many more.
Other partners supporting the event included Michigan Economic Development Corporation, Pure Michigan Business Connect, Michigan Minority Supplier Development Council, Great Lakes Women’s Business Council, Michigan Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and Beacon Park.
The Meet the Buyer event reflects what the BuyDetroit Procurement Portal does digitally – serve as the City’s single-source clearing house for local business opportunities. To date, 357 local suppliers and 72 buyers have registered in the portal. Because the program fosters a community of business-to-business procurement, suppliers can be buyers as well.
BuyDetroit offers capacity building and technical assistance programs to prepare Detroit-based, small- and mid-sized businesses to secure the more than $2 billion in available procurement opportunities within the city. To visit the portal and access a variety of training videos, eligibility requirements, registration details, and other information visit degc.org/buydetroit/