The Bowie Business Innovation Center (Bowie BIC) is pleased to announce it has been awarded the 2020 Most Innovative Entrepreneurship Center of the Year Award from the International Business Innovation Association (InBIA). The award recognizes Bowie BIC’s 8(a) Accelerator Program, a fast track program for winning federal government contracts. The program is exclusively for women, minority and veteran-owned government contractors participating in the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) 8(a) business development program for small and economically disadvantaged businesses.
Annually, the InBIA recognizes business incubators and entrepreneurship centers of excellence globally for their work to accelerate ecosystem building and regional economic growth. Award winners were announced in late June 2020 during the 34th Annual International Conference on Business Incubation with 350 attendees and 44 countries represented in a virtual format.
“This is more than an award for Bowie BIC. It is an acknowledgement of the power of collaboration to address challenges faced by economically disadvantaged companies and an example of how our community is generating economic impact and jobs. Prince George’s County is leading the way as a hub and center of excellence for 8(a) business success,” commented Lisa S. Smith, Bowie BIC’s founding executive director.
Bowie BIC’s 8(a) Accelerator Program was launched in 2019 with collaboration from the SBA and funding from Capital One, PilieroMazza, and EZGovOpps Market Intelligence. A cornerstone of the program is mentoring from other successful 8(a) CEOs. In its first year, the program assisted 32 8(a) companies and generated $12 million in new government contract revenues.
SBA’s Washington Metropolitan Area District Office (WMADO) serves the largest portfolio of 8(a) contractors in the country, according to Antonio Doss, WMADO district director. “We were pleased to work with the Bowie BIC to launch this initiative. This high-profile award rightfully brings attention to the excellent teaching and mentoring that the 8(a) Accelerator Program provides to socially and economically disadvantaged small businesses. Participants gain confidence in their ability to compete effectively in the federal marketplace and use these learnings to gain new contract awards.”
In the fall of 2020, Bowie BIC will launch its first virtual cohort for the 8(a) Accelerator Program. Due to COVID-19, the program will be designed for participation 100% online. Applications will be accepted in August for the 8(a) Accelerator which begins in October of this year.
About Bowie Business Innovation Center
Bowie BIC is an award-winning hub for business acceleration in Prince George’s County, MD. Technology companies and government contractors access key business scale-up resources at Bowie BIC, such as customized business support, professional counseling, mentoring and competitively priced office and collaborative workspace. A Maryland nonprofit headquartered at the Center for Business at Bowie State University, Bowie BIC is the only business accelerator in the State located on the campus of a historically black college or university (HBCU).
Generous support for Bowie BIC is provided by the City of Bowie, the Prince George’s County Council, Capital One, M&T Bank, CliftonLarsonAllen LLP, Joseph, Greenwald & Laake PA, Proven Management, LLC, Magadia Consulting, Inc., Inncuvate, Three| E Consulting, Tradewinds International Holdings, LTD., Workforce Resources, Inc., Bowie State University, and Maryland TEDCO.