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CINCINNATI—March 19, 2013 —The Minority Business Accelerator (MBA), the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber’s hallmark economic-development initiative focused on growing sizeable minority firms, has named Abel Building Systems, GT Industrial Supply, Inc. (GTI) and Management Performance International, Inc. (MPI Consulting) to its portfolio.  

Abel Building Systemscreates security and fire safety solutions for government and commercial clients. Abel also provides monitoring and maintenance services for clients throughout the tri-state region.  Located in Lincoln Heights, the certified MBE/WBE firm has planned, designed and retrofitted hundreds of systems for businesses, schools, hospitals, churches and large retail stores since its founding by Marla and Eric Ruffin in 2000. 

GTI sources and distributes packaging, janitorial, lighting and safety supplies, and other industrial supplies from its Sharonville facility.  Founded in 2009 by Mike Griffie, owner of M-Pact Corporation, and Stephen Tino, former owner of Pipe Products, GTI also offers vendor management inventory services that track usage and reduce costs by forecasting supply needs and minimizing obsolete inventory. 

Founded in 1974, MPI Consulting is a human resource management firm that provides strategic planning, organizational development, compensation and rewards consulting, labor consulting and project management services to help clients, including GE Aircraft Engines, Macy’s, Brown Forman and Unilever, meet operational objectives.  Based in Blue Ash, the company is led by president & CEO John Hawkins, former Procter & Gamble brand manager and owner of Pathfinder Management Consulting since 2009. 

The mission of the Chamber’s MBA is to accelerate the growth of sizable minority businesses and expand the minority entrepreneurial community, thus enabling minority-owned firms to create jobs and overall wealth for the regional economy.  

The MBA works on both the supply and demand side of procurement. Through work with MBA portfolio companies, it improves the capacity of local minority-owned businesses to serve as suppliers to corporations. Concurrently, the MBA works to secure an annual spend goal from local corporations –MBA goalsetters—to procure goods and services from minority-owned firms.   

The MBA focuses on growing sizable minority-owned businesses based on the belief that those firms have the greatest potential to have the biggest impact on the region through the economic stimulus of job creation.  

In 2011, the MBA secured commitments from goal setters to spend $594 million in goods and services with local MBEs—a year over year increase of 25%, beating the annual spend goal by $94 million and the 2010 result by $120 million. Since 2005, MBA goalsetters have spent $2.7 billion with regional minority-owned firms. And the average revenue of MBA portfolio firms grew from $6.7 million in 2004 to $21 million in 2011, an increase of 213 percent.   

Currently, the MBA has 34 portfolio firms and 32 goal-setters.  Additional information about the MBA is available at 

About the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber:
The Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber is the nation's fifth largest chamber, representing the interests of more than 5,000 member businesses. Its mission is to capture Cincinnati USA as one of the world's favorite American business centers. The chamber serves its membership and the Cincinnati USA community through economic development, government advocacy, festivals and events, regional vision and collaboration, money-saving benefit programs, leadership and networking opportunities and educational programs. For more information, visit 

Robbie Riser Jennings
VP, Marketing



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