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Upcoming conference focuses on small-business diversity, resources

By Journal Staff

Date:

BINGHAMTON — In an Internet age, owners of new and emerging businesses have a lot of information at their fingertips, but entrepreneurs often don’t know what to do with all that information once they have it.

The Trifecta Group hopes to help resolve that problem with its first-ever New Frontiers Business Development Conference and Expo, scheduled for Feb. 25 at the Riverwalk Hotel in Binghamton.

The goal, organizers say, is to bring together different elements of the business community, from new entrepreneurs to seasoned corporate veterans, to open the lines of communication between those groups and foster business growth.

The event, which start at 10 a.m., includes a number of workshops, networking opportunities, a business expo, and panel discussions, say organizers Tiffanee M. Jacob and Anthony Williams, partners at Trifecta.

The focus is really on diversity within the small-business community, they say, showing the importance of working with new and diverse businesses to help stimulate the economy and expose businesses to new opportunities.

In particular, Jacob says, the event will serve as a platform for minority- and women-owned businesses to gather information and network with other businesses.

Often, small-business owners are aware of incentives and other opportunities out there, but perhaps are too intimidated to seek out those opportunities, Williams says. 

“A lot of times with entrepreneurs, especially with women and minority-owned, there seems to be an emphasis on the impossibilities,” Williams says. People spend a lot of time telling small businesses what they can’t do and not enough time encouraging those businesses.

“People who have visions and dreams need encouragement and support,” he says.

The New Frontiers Business Dev-elopment Conference will not only provide that encouragement, but also give those dreamers a plan of action to make their dreams a reality, he adds.

“A lot of people, they’re looking for guidance,” he says. “They’re looking for direction.” The panel of speakers at the conference will help provide that guidance, he says. This way attendees will leave with a slew of information, as well as good advice on what to do with that information.

The conference agenda features a number of workshops with speakers including Roxanne Mutchler, government-contracting coordinator with the New York State Small Business Development Center Procurement Assistance Center; James H. Pogue, president of The College Doctor; and Omar Sanders, a financial analyst with the Binghamton Local Development Corporation. The workshops cover topics such as working with the government, effective start-up solutions, and financing a business.

The expo features booths, starting at $75, for local businesses or organizations to display and share information.

The event will end with a panel discussion and networking from 5 to 6:30 p.m. Full information about the event is available online at www.newfrontiersexpo.info.

Williams says he hopes to draw 300 attendees to the event, which costs $25 to participate in the workshops.

“There is interest in small business,” he says.

American Express is the premium event sponsor. Workshop sponsors include SCORE, the New York State Small Business Development Center, Mohawk Valley Small Business Development Center, and The College Doctor.

The Trifecta Group (www.thetrifectagroup.net), a subsidiary of Trifecta International LLC, is a one year-old business focused on providing business-development, brand-development, and diversity-initiative services. Jacob and Williams are partners along with Sherita Searcy in the business and are the group’s sole employees. Prior to forming Trifecta, Jacob and Williams worked with the Small Business Development Center.

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