ATLANTA– Emdee International, a leading distributor of home textiles in the U.S. market and a client of the MBDA Business Center-Atlanta, was awarded a Women Business Enterprise (WBE) certification, a world-class certification that is accepted by more than 1,000 corporations representing America’s most prestigious brands, by the Women’s Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC).
Established by Manju Vaswani and Deepa Dharamrup in 1994, Emdee designs and imports drapery panels, luxury throws, decorative pillows and specialty fabrics, under the brand name Emdee Home Collection. Their products can be classified as medium to high-end, classic, elegant and mostly European in style. In response to a need to grow domestically, Emdee successfully started designing and providing unique textile products to large retailers for their own private label brands. Emdee has recently branched out into contracting in the hospitality and housing industries.
“We set high standards for our products and customer service. We are only interested in selling products that we absolutely love and would want in our own homes,” said Deepa, co-owner of Emdee.
Emdee was approached to do business with The Home Depot and needed to provide a certification that established their minority status. Deepa decided to apply for a WBE certification.
Deepa recalled, “I did some research online and came across the MBDA Business Center-Atlanta which supports minorities and those seeking to acquire certifications. The Center helped me to put my package together.”
Deepa submitted Emdee’s package to WBENC, which is also a third-party certifier for the United States Small Business Administration (SBA) Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB) Federal Contracting Program. WBENC validates that a business is 51 percent owned, controlled, operated, and managed by a woman or women. To achieve a WBENC certification, women owned businesses complete a formal documentation and site visit process which is administered by one of WBENC’s 14 regional partner organizations. WBENC certification gives women owned businesses the ability to compete for real-time business opportunities provided by WBENC corporate members and government agencies. Other benefits of the WBE certification includes:
• Access: access to supplier diversity and procurement executives in U.S. corporations and federal, state and local government entities that accept the WBENC certification
• Capacity development: the access to mentoring, education, capacity development, training, community support, and the eligibility to participate in the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth through the Tuck-WBENC Executive Program
• Recognition: eligibility for regional representation and national recognition
• Promotion: use of the WBE seal and eligibility to promote a business through sponsorship of WBENC national events
• Community support: eligibility to participate in WBENC social media profiles and informal networking at WBENC national events
• Advocacy: opportunities to participate in surveys and research developed on women business issues and representation of women business issues in forums
Emdee International is now certified as a WBE.
“We are elated that we are able to leverage our WBE status to get more business,” explained Deepa. “We are also thankful to the MBDA Business Center-Atlanta and their team for assisting us in this tedious process. They helped us to streamline the process successfully and we look forward to referring other business partners to this wonderful organization.”
For more information about the MBDA Business Center-Atlanta Certification Package Service, please contact Alesia Williams, Marketing and Event Planning Coordinator of the MBDA Business Center-Atlanta, at email@example.com.