Mon., November 6, 2017 Economics

City increased the percentage and value of contracts awarded to Minority, Women and Disabled-owned businesses

PHILADELPHIA — The City of Philadelphia’s Office of Economic Opportunity (OEO) released its Fiscal Year 2017 Annual Report, which details all City contracts with Minority, Women and Disabled-owned businesses (M/W/DSBEs) during FY17. The overall City and quasi-public participation rate for FY17 was 31.9%, an increase over the FY16 rate of 30.6%.

Twenty-six out of 47 identified departments exceeded their departmental goal set during the FY17 Budget Hearings, and 13 surpassed the City’s 35% participation goal. Personal and Professional Services, which account for 52% of spending, exceeded participation goals for FY17 with 43.2% of total contract dollars going to M/W/DSBEs.

“Philadelphia is experiencing a great deal of economic success, and we must ensure the businesses benefiting from this ongoing renaissance are representative of Philadelphia’s population,” said Iola Harper, Deputy Director of Commerce for the Office of Economic Opportunity. “The results we see in the FY17 Annual Report show impressive progress towards providing equal access to opportunity for Minority, Women and Disabled-owned businesses, but there is still work to do if we want to achieve the City’s goal of 35% participation. The increased participation goal is ambitious, but OEO’s focused attention on tracking and capacity building will help us to reach these numbers.”

The FY17 Annual Report examines the portfolio mix of City contracts, including those from City departments, quasi-public and federal agencies, awarded during the period of July 1, 2016 through June 30, 2017.  Participation on City contracts is defined as the total contracts awarded to M/W/DSBEs as a percentage of eligible contracts awarded. In FY17, the City and quasi-public agencies awarded $317 million in contracts to M/W/DSBEs, an increase of more than $13 million from FY16. City departments alone awarded $251.6 million to M/W/DSBEs, representing 33.56% participation. The value of City contracts awarded to both MBE and WBE firms increased as well. MBE firms received more than $138 million in City contracts – up from $120 million in FY16, and WBEs received over $112 million in City contracts, compared to $95 million last year.

Due to the advocacy and support of Office of Economic Opportunity, the number of Philadelphia businesses that have been formally certified as Minority, Women and Disabled enterprises by a City-approved certifying agency has expanded to 2,765 businesses, an increase of more than 180 in the past year.

The FY17 Annual ReportAppendix and OEO Registry of Minority, Women and Disabled-owned firms can be found online at

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