Booker, Norcross Celebrate Expansion of The Enterprise Center Into New Jersey
Nonprofit is New Jersey’s first Minority Business Center
Newark, NJ – Today, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Representative Donald Norcross (NJ-01) celebrated the New Jersey launch of The Enterprise Center, a nonprofit organization that has secured contracts to create two distinct entities: the New Jersey Minority Development Agency (MBDA) Business Center and the Camden Cares Business Center. Through these contracts, The Enterprise Center will help minority-owned businesses in New Jersey access capital, business development opportunities, and contracts to grow their operations as well as provide technical assistance, training services, and funding application support to COVID-impacted businesses in Camden.
Citing the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on minority small business and historical racial inequities within the financial system, Booker urged the U.S. Department of Commerce to establish a Minority Business Center in New Jersey earlier this year. Over the past years, he has also worked to ensure that the MBDA is permanently authorized, an effort that was recently signed into law as part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal.
“The devastating economic effects of this pandemic have disproportionately impacted minority small businesses across America, with nearly half of Black and one-third of Latino small businesses being forced to shut down – some permanently,” said Sen. Booker. “However, we know that minority businesses and entrepreneurs were struggling even before the pandemic, and historic inequities and barriers were merely exacerbated by this crisis. That is why I’ve fought to make the MBDA permanent and fought to open the first Minority Business Center here in New Jersey so that our residents don’t have to travel out of state to access these services. As it launches today, I know that The Enterprise Center will offer critical resources and assistance to our state’s underserved small businesses for years to come.”
“We know that our financial institutions can and need to be better if we’re going to expand equal opportunity to everyone in our community,” said Rep. Norcross. “I know I wouldn’t be where I am today if it weren’t for accessible education and career training, and I know that having The Enterprise Center in Camden will help level the playing field by opening doors to opportunity and increasing access to vital resources for local minority-owned businesses.”
“I am proud to lead The Enterprise Center’s expansion into New Jersey,” said Victoria Hosendorf, Executive Vice President of The Enterprise Center. “Through the New Jersey MBDA Business Center and Camden Cares Business Center, we have an opportunity to build upon our mission of cultivating and investing in minority entrepreneurs at a critical time when so many are struggling to recover from the pandemic and years of economic hardships. We look forward to working with and for our community here in Camden and beyond.”