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Day 2: IDENTIFY OPPORTUNITIES | Thursday, December 3, 2020

The day begins with several sessions designed to help you identify opportunities and understand how to evaluate them and determine if they are right for your business. Next, join targeted sessions that will introduce you to new contract opportunities with NYS. Navigate top projects and market sector opportunities. Match the right ones for your business!

 9:00 a.m. - 9:30 a.m. 
  • Identifying Opportunities: Strategy and Vision Special session presented by Goldman Sachs

    To bid on a project, or not bid on a project? This is the important question certified small businesses ask themselves almost every day. This session is developed in partnership with Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses and will give you valuable insight into identifying opportunities that align with your vision, a strategy to use to determine which opportunities are right for you and the options to pivot to achieve success.

  •  9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. 
  • What Do We Need?
    A Report from NYS Government Agencies and Authorities

    As capital budgets, as well as agency and authority priorities, continue to evolve, this key session will provide you with the opportunity to hear first-hand what New York State decision makers are looking for from certified MWBEs and where you can find new opportunities.

  •  10:00 a.m. - 10:30 a.m.  
  • Discretionary Awards: Build a Roadmap to New Opportunities

    Legislated by New York State, discretionary awards provide a special opportunity for MWBEs to bid on contracts up to $500,000 for all Article 15-A agencies and up-to $1 million for the MTA. This session will help you identify the opportunities and develop a strategy for bidding and winning these contracts.

    Target New Opportunities in Big Projects

    Top Project sessions include key ventures that highlight New York State as a national economic development leader and one of the country’s strongest advocates for MWBEs. Sessions will showcase the areas for significant state spending and substantial demand for qualified MWBEs.

     10:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m.  

    Opportunities at The MTA

     11:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. 

    Airports: LaGuardia and JFK Airports

       12:30 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. 

    Belmont Park Redevelopment

       12:45 p.m. - 1:45 p.m.    

    Vital Brooklyn Initiative and other Affordable Housing Projects


    There are new opportunities through New York State for service providers, consultants, suppliers and manufacturers. Navigate the markets you already do business in and explore some new ones to identify the best opportunities for your business.

       1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. 

    OGS Opportunities: Commodities and Information Technology

    More than ever, New York State is relying on technology and certified firms that can offer creative solutions to its needs. If you are an MWBE who works in information technology (IT), and/or commodities, this session is for you! Attendees will learn about doing business with the Office of General Services (OGS), which presently manages more than 1,500 centralized contracts, valued at over $22 billion. You will also gain a better understanding of the OGS’s procurement process, including preferred sources, centralized state contracts and agency or multi-agency contracts.

       2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m. 

    Schools, Colleges and Universities Reimagined

    As schools, colleges and universities reimagine the way students learn, join this special session to hear from key decision makers on the future of their capital programs and the new contract opportunities emerging at their agencies, authorities and institutions. MWBEs can explore statewide opportunities in non-construction commodity and professional service procurements in this sector, along with new campus construction, dormitory and incubator projects, renovations and facility maintenance. This session provides a roadmap for all types of government procurements, construction and non-construction services and commodities, in New York State’s educational sector.

       2:45 p.m. - 3:30 p.m.    

    Healthcare Opportunities in a Changing Market

    The healthcare industry has found itself in a tremendous period of growth and change. This important session will assist MWBEs in navigating the procurement opportunities at the New York State Department of Health (DOH) and hospitals throughout the state. Plan on joining this session designed to provide an economic and contract outlook in this expanding and changing market. Both construction and non-construction goods and service procurements will be covered.

       3:15 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.    

    Transportation Opportunities in NYS

    With $9.8 billion for new capital investments in transportation infrastructure and increased aid to localities downstate and upstate projected, the opportunity pipeline for MWBEs is strong at the NYS Department of Transportation (DOT). During this session attendees will learn about the statewide DOT projects, including the BRIDGE NY and $100 million for local highway improvements and reconstruction through the PAVE NY program.

       3:45 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.    

    Architecture and Engineering Opportunities Outlook

    As capital programs and priorities shift throughout 2020 and beyond, this important session will review the upcoming opportunities for certified architects and engineers. This session will focus on architecture and engineering opportunities and what certified firms need to know about doing business with New York State agencies and authorities.

       4:45 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.    

    Investment, Financial, Legal and Accounting Services Opportunities Outlook

    Opportunities for asset managers, bond underwriters, accountants, auditors and attorneys are increasing throughout New York State as agencies and authorities continue to reposition themselves for new financial strategies to build and sustain the State. Join interactive sessions to learn about opportunities in this market sector, tips on teaming with primes and other certified firms and how to participate in the contracting process in these professional service markets. Hear from leading financial services professionals active in this market and assess the new opportunities available to your firms.

       4:45 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.    

    Accounting, Auditing and Management Consulting

    This session examines MWBE opportunities for accounting, auditing and related consulting services in New York State. Teaming, building new relationships and the pipeline of professional services consulting opportunities are the focus of this discussion.

       4:45 p.m. - 5:15 p.m.    

    Legal Services

    Learn about the types of legal services needed by New York State, procurement cycles, non- bond work, immigration, tax and environmental law and how MWBE outreach is conducted along with best practices for building new business relationships. Join the conversation, meet some key decision makers and determine your action plan for new contract possibilities.

       5:30 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.    

    Asset Management: Market Trends and Opportunities

    This special session reviews asset management opportunities in New York State as well as examining MWBE participation strategies.


    Looking for access to capital and technical assistance for loans, grants and other financial support? Stop by the NYS Business Financing Information Center and speak with Empire State Development representatives who can provide resources, tools and tips for funding resources.

       9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.    
       1:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m.    

    ***by appointment only

    Take the opportunity to virtually connect with certification analysts for a one-on-one, 10-minute session regarding the New York State MWBE certification process. Sign up in advance at Empire State Development’s Division of Minority and Women’s Business Development’s virtual booth!


    This series of four, on-demand sessions will provide you with what you need to know to be more strategic in NYS government procurements. Remember to download these sessions into your virtual briefcase to refer to after the Forum.

    NYS MWBE Certification Made Easy

    Jump-start the certification process with the guidance of Empire State Development’s Certification Team. During this “on-demand” session, you can learn about NYS MWBE certification eligibility criteria, the application process, and how your online profile impacts your business potential.

    Open the 2020 NYS MWBE Opportunities eBook

    The 2020 NYS MWBE Opportunities eBook is your digital resource for learning about the State’s 97 NYS agencies and authorities, how to connect with them and what opportunities are in the pipeline. This is a must-read to leverage your Forum experience.

    Navigate the New York State Contract Reporter

    This informative on-demand session will help you navigate the New York State Contract Reporter, New York State’s official source for contracting opportunities, to find advertised state procurement opportunities for commodities, services and construction projects.

    How to do Business with New York State

    Enrich your understanding of how to leverage your NYS MWBE certification. During this on-demand session you will learn best practices and helpful tips for working with New York State, including understanding the State’s procurement process, how to market your firm, navigate contracting opportunities, as well as how to work with Empire State Development’s (ESD) Business Development Team.


    Take advantage of a one-of-a-kind, virtual opportunity to meet decision makers and procurement officers from New York State’s Agencies and Authorities. Forge mutually beneficial relationships with government professionals and learn about new projects in current and upcoming pipelines.


    Dive into a unique virtual networking experience! Attendees will be able to visit dozens of booths – communicating via chat or video chat. Be sure to efficiently utilize your time by mapping out which virtual booths you will be visiting!


    Dive into a unique virtual networking experience! Attendees will be able to visit dozens of booths – communicating via chat or video chat. Be sure to efficiently utilize your time by mapping out which virtual booths you will be visiting!

    Design Build Project Opportunities

    Join this informative session to learn how you can navigate the design build procurement process. Industry experts will break down the design build process and share important insights into the procurement timeline and the best way to build relationships with design build teams already working on projects and those that are building new MWBE talent banks.

    Building Great Companies

    Join this informative session to learn how you can navigate the design build procurement process. Industry experts will break down the design build process and share important insights into the procurement timeline and the best way to build relationships with design build teams already working on projects and those that are building new MWBE talent banks.

    A Workers Compensation Workshop for MWBEs

    Join New York State Workers Compensation Board (WCB) as they provide an important overview on what businesses need to know about workers compensation coverage. This on demand session is a must- attend for small businesses that are new or have questions about workers compensation and compliance requirements.

    Affordable Housing Opportunities: NYS Homes and Community Renewal and the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance

    New York State continues to provide funding to support the $20 billion five-year investment in affordable housing to ensure New Yorkers who are homeless or at risk of homelessness have safe and secure housing. New York State’s goal is to create or preserve 100,000 new affordable housing and 6,000 supportive housing units. This session will review the opportunities in this market sector.

    Advertising & Marketing, Graphic Design, Food & Beverage, Medical, Dental Supplies, Insurance, Janitorial Services: New Business Opportunities in NYS

    The opportunities are HERE! This session is packed with insightful information for MWBEs who are active in advertising and marketing, graphic design, food and beverage, medical, dental supplies, insurance, and janitorial services. Learn about which NYS agencies and authorities have contract opportunities and how best to bid them.

    PLA Primer
    How to Build a Union Project Portfolio

    Wary of signing onto a construction project with a Project Labor Agreement (PLA)? This session will introduce you to the art and science of navigating a PLA. Topics include: understanding the short and long-term value of a PLA, the role that PLAs play in creating new and sustainable relationships and how to protect and negotiate your position when a dispute or claim occurs.