02:40 AM

DFW International Airport's Minority- And Women-Owned Business Contracts Yield $1 Billion For North Texas Economy

Study By University Of North Texas Rates Airport Among Best In Nation; 9,000 Jobs Created

DFW INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Texas (July 30, 2004) – Seven years into one of the most ambitious and innovative minority- and womenowned business initiatives in the country, DFW International Airport's construction and development-related contracts awarded to minority businesses generate regional economic activity in excess of $1 billion, according to a new study by the University of North Texas released today. The Airport's success with small and emerging business entities has created over 9,000 local jobs responsible for an estimated $358 million in wages and salaries. 

Prepared by Dr. Bernard Weinstein and Dr. Terry Clower from the UNT Center for Economic Development and Research, the report analyzes the contracting award impact of DFW's Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprises (M/WBEs) on North Central Texas. The study compares values of construction and development awards over the past seven years and recurring procurement spending with small, ethnic and racial minority business contractors in Dallas and Tarrant counties.

"Clearly the Airport is, without question, one of the largest entities in the North Central Texas metropolitan area utilizing minority business interests with a remarkable level of measurable success," Weinstein said. "Nationally, DFW has established a position of participation in its core contracting programs that generates positive return on initial investment with prime contractors, sub-contractors, suppliers and vendors. And as a public agency, DFW is one of the most reliable supporters of women- and minority-owned business enterprises. It is indeed a model for the entire country."  

Data analysis confirms expectations of DFW's Board of Directors, which developed the M/WBE policies with the mandate to give small businesses the financial capacity to grow and to present equal opportunities for entrepreneurs of all races and ethnicities. DFW CEO Jeff Fegan said the study demonstrates the value of the Airport's regional investment in small and emerging businesses and sets the standard for "developing and implementing an efficient and effective program for diversity and economic opportunity." 

"The study's analysis is a vote of confidence for all of North Texas supporting the direct and indirect impact of minority business activities funded through the Airport's contracts and procurement," Fegan said. "Whether primary, secondary or tertiary, contracting opportunities here offer an impressive boost to the area's economic activity, including an estimated $32.9 million in state and local tax revenues." 

Based on UNT estimates surrounding total contract awards to M/WBE firms, Dallas and Tarrant counties are netting economic increases of about $697 million for construction related activities and $37 million for recurring procurement spending. 

"We are proud that DFW provides a steady and measurable source of M/WBE opportunities that have a positive impact in our communities and indeed the entire North Texas marketplace," said Linda Valdez Thompson, Executive Vice President of Administration and Diversity at DFW. 

Working with North Texas' multi-ethnic chambers of commerce and other agencies, the Airport fosters relationships with women- and minorityowned contractors, vendors and service providers through education, training and mentoring programs that provide business resources and advocates for greater minority participation. 

In its analysis, the Center studied over 520 separate output line items for the Airport's development/construction projects and related economic activity on recurring spending. Using a widely-accepted IMPLAN economic model, researchers measured change in key areas of economic activity, supply chain operations and salaries. The sum of the economic impact analysis results in a "multiplier" effect tracking the growth of its initial investment.

Weinstein concludes that DFW Airport's commitment to minority business and to its development of small- and medium-sized enterprises "strengthens the region's capacity to achieve sustainable growth." 

"We are proud of where we are, but we still have a long way to go," said Don O'Bannon, Vice President of DFW's Small and Emerging Business Department (SEBD), who administers the Airport's standards for minority contracting. "Our success is a credit to the vision of our Board. We take very seriously our role as the economic engine for North Texas, and that goes for businesses of all sizes managed by people of all cultures." 

The study highlighted these DFW initiatives for contributing to the billiondollar impact on the North Texas economy:

• Assisting in the identification of qualified D/M/WBE's to bid or propose on Airport projects. The Airport offers resources for D/M/WBE's seeking business opportunities with DFW and for prime contractors that need assistance in meeting the Airport Board's DBE and M/WBE program requirements.

• Utilizing an effective outreach program to disseminate information pertaining to upcoming opportunities/solicitations to the D/M/WBE community. Technical assistance is available to D/M/WBE's through established programs such as Quarterly Vendor Workshops, Surety Support Initiative, Small Contractor Development Training Workshop, DBE and M/WBE certification.

• Prime contractors can be provided with a listing of certified D/M/WBE's to be considered for subcontracting opportunities. If a prime contractor utilizes a D/M/WBE firm that has not been certified by the Airport Board, DFW Airport can assist the applicant in expediting the certification process.

To arrange interviews, contact Ken Capps, Vice President, Public Affairs at 972 574 8080 or kcapps@dfwairport.com.

If you are a prime contractor/consultant and need assistance in satisfying the Board's DBE or M/WBE program requirements or if you are a D/M/WBE firm and need assistance in introducing your goods and/or service, contact DFW Airport's Small & Emerging Business Department by phone at 972 574 8008 or by e-mail at sebd@dfwairport.com.