CEO’s New Year Message



Hello Everyone,

On behalf of the Board of Directors and the MSDUK management team, I would like to extend warm festive greetings and wish you all an extremely successful and joyous 2019! I am sure you will all enjoy the Christmas break with your family and friends!

2018 was a monumental year for MSDUK- 2 new colleagues joining the team, an office in London, new faces on the board of directors- this all came together to deliver our 6 th biennial conference in Birmingham that attracted over 500 attendees from all across the world and the launch of our ambitious 3-year growth plan!

Let me sum up some of our achievements in 2018:

  • First-ever executive education residential programme delivered jointly by the Ivy League’s Tuck School of Business, Dartmouth and Aston Business School, Birmingham was held just before our conference. The ‘ Building a High Performing Minority Business ’ weekend residential was attended by 16 high-growth business owners from the UK and South Africa. These business owners were sponsored by Cummins, Bristol Myers Squibb, Citi, EY, Accenture and MSD.
  • We hosted our second Innovation Challenge at the conference that attracted nearly 80 entries with 43% female founders and the average age of our 12 finalists was 26 years old. This reiterates our commitment to unlocking innovation through diversity and reaching out to young entrepreneurs.
  • A hugely successful MSDUK 2018 Conference & Awards in Birmingham during September hosted over 500 attendees from all across the world and saw the launch of our ambitious 3-year growth plan integrating innovation, knowledge and procurement to deliver greater value to all our stakeholders.
  • 2018 saw an increase in the number of new business won by ethnic minority businesses, higher value of business generated and more B2B business transactions within the network.

More than £56m worth of business was awarded to EMBs within MSDUK network in 2017 and this year, we have seen 12 new EMBs that have won business including the likes of Curious Agency, Swayam Group, Gibbs Hybrid, Iconic Event Management, Brocks Compass, Praxis, SAVORTEX and others.

What’s in store for 2019?
  • As we start implementing our ambitious 2020 growth plan, you will see the MSDUK network grow in size and capability; in addition, there will be a bigger MSDUK team in Leicester and London delivering new programmes, events and helping you all make new connections.
  • We will be welcoming 2019 with many new corporate members, including Sony Pictures, Morgan Stanley, Google, Eaton and many more.
  • Our growing network of partners will provide a range of products and services to support growth of EMBs. 2019 will see MSDUK work strategically with University College of London, Aston Business School, Digital Catapult, Chartered Institute of Purchasing & Supply and our global partners including NMSDC, CAMSC, Supply Nation, SRMSDC, SASDC and many others.
  • A range of new programmes including Procurement masterclasses for EMBs, ‘Building Business Leaders of the Future’ programme, CPO Roundtable in partnership with CIPS, Investment Readiness & Pitching workshops, Industry Forums for innovators will be introduced in 2019
  • 2019 Business Show, Innovation Challenge and Knowledge Forum will be held in London on 17 th & 18 th September and the Tuck -Aston ‘Building a High Performing Minority Business’ residential will be held between 18 th-21 st
  • The much awaited MSDUK Benchmarking Tool, developed in partnership with Accenture & CVM Solutions, will finally be launched in January.

Every social entrepreneur like myself has a vision to make a bigger impact and we never stop dreaming! However, these dreams only come true with the support of people and organisations that put their belief and trust in the big vision!

I would like to extend my sincere gratitude to our corporate sponsors that have funded the hubs and the individual programmes and initiatives- they include Accenture, EY, Intel, Cummins, Bristol Myers-Squibb, AgileOne – and look forward to their continued support as we embark on delivering an ambitious 2020 growth plan.

Wishing you all a joyous festive season with your loved ones and here’s to looking forward to a continued mutual success in 2019!

– Mayank Shah, CEO