Business Owners Invited to Virtual Workshop  on Illinois Business Enterprise Program
Will County Board, County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant

State program helps minority, women and disabled business owners connect with opportunities

Will County Executive Jennifer Bertino-Tarrant invites business owners to attend a free virtual workshop to learn about the Illinois Business Enterprise Program (BEP) and local resources. The workshop, on Thursday, September 29th from 1PM – 2PM, is being hosted in coordination with the Will County Center for Economic Development (CED) and the State of Illinois Commission on Equity and Inclusion.

“I’m glad for the opportunity to host this session and share how the Business Enterprise Program can help local businesses grow,” said Bertino-Tarrant. “BEP opens doors for businesses to access public and private contracts. With the State of Illinois investing millions of dollars into Will County projects, this program empowers local business owners to access these opportunities.”

The virtual session will provide an overview of the benefits of BEP, an introduction to the certification process, available procurement opportunities, and other State programs. The CED will also present on how they can connect local businesses with partners and resources to help them grow.

“The Illinois Business Enterprise Program encourages the growth and development of businesses owned by minorities, women, and people with disabilities by promoting their participation in the State procurement process,” said Doug Pryor, Will County CED President and CEO “In 2021, Illinois awarded more than $800 million in BEP contracts. Join us and get registered to help bring more of these opportunities to Will County businesses.”

BEP is managed by the State of Illinois and helps businesses owned by minorities, women, and persons with disabilities increase their capacity, grow revenue, and enhance credentials. BEP-certified businesses are listed on an online directory used by State procurement officials and prime vendors, increasing their opportunity to bid on contracts with BEP goals.

To qualify for BEP certification, businesses must be at least 51% owned and controlled by persons who are minority, women, or designated as disabled. They also must have an annual gross sales of less than $75 million and be owned by a United States citizen or resident alien.

Interested attendees can learn more and register by visiting willcountyced.com.