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SBA, CIAPR hosting federal contracting networking event

This forum will provide local companies with the chance to receive first-hand information on procurement resources available on the island and allow them to meet individually with federal and local government officials.

The U.S. Small Business Administration and the Puerto Rico Professional College of Engineers and Land Surveyors (CIAPR by its Spanish acronym) will conduct this Thursday, May 4 their Annual Government Contracting Matchmaking Event, bringing together contracting officers and small business owners, as National Small Business Week takes place on the island.

“Our main objective is to provide a forum where small business owners can meet face to face, through individual appointments, with federal procurement officials looking for suppliers to help meet the U.S. government’s contracting goals,” said SBA Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands District Director Yvette T. Collazo.

“Part of our mission is to ensure small businesses gain a fair share of federal contracts — at least 23 percent — and we continue working hard to achieve that objective,” she said.

Ralph A. Kreil Rivera, President of the Puerto Rico Professional College of Engineers and Land Surveyors, meanwhile, said “We’re very pleased to be able to join forces again with SBA to offer our members greater access to to federal projects. We’re confident that the event will result in many professional opportunities.”

Participating at the matchmaking event will be such entities as General Services Administration, USDA Rural Development, Federal Highway Administration with the Puerto Rico Department of Transportation’s Office of Small Disadvantaged Business Utilization, FEMA, IRS, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Installation Contracting Office-Fort Buchanan, U.S. Department of Justice, and Dept. of Veterans Affairs, among others. Also, large companies such as Pfizer and Lilly del Caribe will be joining the event this year.

In addition, business owners will also have the chance to attend educational sessions, covering such topics as the Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Zone program, Capability Statements, System for Award Management, Small Business Innovation Research, Loan Guaranty programs, and more. SBA resource partners and local government resources, will also be available to provide orientation.

The matchmaking event will be held at CIAPR facilities located at #500 Antolín Nin St., in Hato Rey, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. The event is open to the public, but seating is limited. To register free of charge, visit https://events.sba.gov/events/  and click on the map for Puerto Rico.

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This story was written by our staff based on a press release.

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