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REACH program grows Omaha’s SEB pool by more than 100 Firms

The Greater Omaha area is home to nearly one million people across more than 30 diverse communities. With 40 percent of the metro’s population under the age of 24, a low cost of living and steady economic growth that is almost twice the national average, Omaha is proving to be fertile ground for small and emerging businesses (SEBs).

REACH, the Midwest’s largest, multi-partner initiative designed to increase certified SEBs, announced on Friday more than $6.1M over the past 30 months in contracts that have increased both access to construction projects and inclusivity.

“Many institutions and businesses, both large and small, have been seeking a way to assist small businesses and give back,” said Winsley Durand, executive director, REACH. “The REACH program has provided a vehicle that provides a collaborative and organized way for these firms to participate in helping to effectively grow our small business ecosystem.”

A program of the Greater Omaha Chamber, in partnership with community strategists, experts and entities, REACH reported more than $1.9M in financing and greater than $2.8M in bonding firms since the program’s inception.

The organization has also grown Omaha’s certified SEBs by more than 100 firms, thanks to 6,400-plus hours of one-on-one consultation or group education sessions.

“Our partnership with the Greater Omaha Chamber’s REACH program has provided new opportunities for small and emerging businesses to grow and compete,” said Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert.  “Workforce development is a priority for our administration. Our investment in REACH is an investment in these businesses and their employees. The return on our investment is their success.”