In 2011, the more than 460 corporate members of the National Minority Supplier Development Council spent more than $100 billion with NMSDC-certified Minority Business Enterprises, or MBEs, up from about $63 billion spent in 2001 and nearly a six-fold increase from the $17.9 billion spent in 1991. Moreover, from 2009 to 2010, companies designated as Billion Dollar Roundtable members increased overall corporate spending with minority- and women-owned suppliers. Established in 2001 to recognize corporations that spend at least $1 billion with minority- and woman-owned suppliers, Billion Dollar Roundtable promotes and shares best practices in supply chain diversity.
Despite such progress, studies show that minority suppliers still have to fight for their fair share of corporate contracting dollars. When the office of U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez released its Corporate Diversity Report in August 2010, it revealed that Asian-owned firms received 3.21% of total procurement dollars, Latino-owned firms won 2.69%, and African American-owned firms were awarded 2.58%. (The report uses data from a smattering of the nation’s 500 largest publicly traded companies that responded to the senator’s survey).
View the 2012 Best Companies for Diversity here.
Today, diversity is much broader than just race and gender; it includes the disabled, veterans, and the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community. A growing number of companies, including IBM and Pacific Gas & Electric—both of which made this year’s list—have expanded their outreach to companies owned and operated by veterans (including service-disabled vets) of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. NBCUniversal L.L.C. (a joint venture between Comcast Corp. and GE) and Comcast, also on this year’s list, spent a combined $60 million with veteran-owned businesses in 2011 and provided assistance on doing business with both companies, such as exploring the sourcing and procurement process, learning how to leverage supplier diversity, and understanding their expectations.
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