Online format creates opportunities for statewide small businesses to engage with state, federal and corporate buyers

MADISON, WI. NOV. 9, 2020—Taking place from Dec. 8-10, MARKETPLACE, the Governor’s Conference on Diverse Business Development, offers training, education, networking and mentoring opportunities to Wisconsin small business owners, with particular attention to challenges faced by minority, woman, veteran and LGBTQ entrepreneurs. For the first time in its 39-year history, the annual event will be conducted virtually, creating new possibilities for statewide participation.

One of the major draws of the MARKETPLACE conference is the opportunity for small business owners to meet one-on-one with federal, state and local government representatives and corporate buyers. These meetings will be retained in the event’s virtual format, as will the educational and networking opportunities the event is known for.

The virtual format of MARKETPLACE 2020 also allows event organizers to expand the program offerings. “As a virtual event, this year’s MARKETPLACE conference will be able to bring a much broader offering of opportunities to Wisconsin’s diverse-owned small businesses,” said Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation Vice President of Business and Community Development Mary Gage. Not only will the online event allow for participation from more Wisconsin minority, woman, veteran and LGBTQ small business owners, it will also provide connections with more resources and business opportunities from around the country.”

Registration for MARKETPLACE 2020 is now open. The general attendance cost is $25 for all three days. Buyers and supplier diversity managers from government agencies and private corporations attending to meet potential suppliers can register at no charge.

To register or for more information about MARKETPLACE, visit