Supplier Diversity can help Improve Silicon Valley’s Diversity Problem

Silicon Valley tech companies have long struggled with diversity in its workforce and supplier base. The largest, most successful, and longest running Minority Business Expo in Northern California takes place on August 16, 2016 – just 20 minutes from Silicon Valley in South San Francisco. It’s the 38th annual conference, hosted by Western Regional Minority Supplier Diversity Council (WRMSDC) where 200 certified minority suppliers will be available to meet with corporate representatives. This will be an excellent opportunity for Bay Area tech firms to network with certified diverse suppliers, and ideally meet new suppliers to consider.

Tech company attendees won’t be limited to the Bay Area – minority suppliers will be coming from California, Nevada, and Hawaii. Companies interested in meeting minority suppliers are invited to bring their teams and host exhibition booths, network on the Connections Floor, and engage in round table matchmaking sessions.

Training and opportunity sessions for minority business owners include:

·         Access to Capital

·         Strategic Alliances and Joint Ventures

·         Opportunities in:

o    Renewable Energy

o    Construction

o    Emerging Technologies


This year, tech giants Apple and Intel spent more than $700 million with businesses owned by people of color, women, and service disabled veterans, and Intel plans to spend an additional $300 million by 2020. The majority of that spending was with businesses in California, making supplier diversity an important driver of state and local economies. As 50% of the U.S. workforce is employed by small business, supporting minority and small business organization is crucial in managing a healthy economy. The tech industry is poised to join industries such as healthcare, finance, and energy that have benefitted from harnessing diversity through WRMDSC. 

The business Expo will be held at the South San Francisco Conference Center (255 South Airport Boulevard, South San Francisco, CA 94080) on August 16, 2016 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:30p.m. To find out more about how you can participate, contact Christine Liwai Garcia.


WRMSDC supports the growth and welfare of minority communities by championing the use of minority-owned businesses in Northern California, Nevada, and Hawai‘i. The Council’s mission is to advance business opportunities for certified minority business enterprises and connect them to Corporate Members.