@NCCapitol

Small businesses get slice of big DNC pie

Posted September 4, 2012
Updated September 5, 2012

— Along with the large corporations getting in on the business of the Democratic National Convention, small and minority-owned businesses are reaping the benefits of the four-day event in Charlotte.

Kelly Koeppel's vision of Charlotte hosting the convention can be seen throughout the city – and nationwide on television. Convention organizers hired her firm, K2Forma to design the event's official logo.

"We laid out all the signage for the whole event – every hat (and) T-shirt – and that's how we proposed that they hire us," Koeppel said Tuesday, the first official session of the convention.

Across town, Rhonda Caldwell's crews are setting up for a social gathering for a North Carolina congressman. It's one of seven parties that her event-planning company, The Main Event, will host during the convention.

"We don't look at doing cookie-cutter events," Caldwell said. "Most often, when you come to one of The Main Event's (events), we have done something different or tried to create a different experience."

Small NC businesses get slice of DNC pie Charlotte business owners get slice of DNC pie

Both small businesses represent the Democratic Party's concerted effort to make sure local minority- and women-owned firms are part of the process.

The two female entrepreneurs said they are well aware that the quality of their work could make it possible for other small and minority-owned businesses to land big contracts in the future.

"When a group like this and an event this big chooses to work with a business so small, we recognize that that's a huge risk they are taking, and we take that responsibility seriously, as well," Koeppel said.

"It is a tough industry for us to compete in, and I think it kind of opens the way or opens for door for others to be a part," Caldwell said.

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  • whatelseisnew Sep 5, 2012

    "I'm tired of paying hospital bills for the uninsured! If someone doesn't have insurance, they should not be treated."

    JUst because someone does not have insurance, that does not mean they are not paying their bills. This is in fact a small part of the problem. Much bigger is the underpayment to Providers from Medicaid and Medicare and ObamaCare is only going to make that worse. That means your bill will pick up more and more of the tab for Medicaid and Medicare, thus forcing Insurance companies to increase Premiums because the providers will raise their fees to make up for lack of payment from the ENORMOUSLY expensive awful insurance plans known as Medicaid and Medicare. Had those two things not existed, we would have much more reasonable health care costs and insurance costs.

  • determined2win Sep 4, 2012

    Wait & see how many companies drop insurance benefits all together and push people onto Obamacare, unless it gets cancelled... large companies have already been looking for ways to drop insurance coverage.

    Fact of Life: Insurance through a job is NOT a Right, it's a privilege - you are owed nothing more than a pre-determined amount of PAY in exchange for your hours worked. Insurance is a fringe benefit or perk... no one owes you anything more than wages for work done.

  • determined2win Sep 4, 2012

    Anyone mention the fact that Union crews were bought in to setup the DNC stage, instead of using local, non-Union employees? So - Union workers were given favor over workers in a right-to-work state -

    Unclassy move on the Dems part...

  • storchheim Sep 4, 2012

    I'm not on the side of the Dems, but I'm glad small businesses are getting some much-needed income. Classy move on the Dems' part.

  • storchheim Sep 4, 2012

    Or treated, but then made, somehow, to pay. Garnishment, work it off, Medicaid, whatever - but not go free.

  • Decorated War Veteran Sep 4, 2012

    If you have over 50 employees, Obamacare is going to make you either pay for health insurance (that is up to their standards) for your employees, or pay a $2000/employee fine. In addition to a lot of extra paperwork, filings, and other requirements.

    Do well but keep your headcount under 50....
    aetius476
    September 4, 2012 5:25 p.m.

    I'm tired of paying hospital bills for the uninsured! If someone doesn't have insurance, they should not be treated.

  • aetius476 Sep 4, 2012

    You all "didn't build that", so don't get too cocky!

    If you have over 50 employees, Obamacare is going to make you either pay for health insurance (that is up to their standards) for your employees, or pay a $2000/employee fine. In addition to a lot of extra paperwork, filings, and other requirements.

    Do well but keep your headcount under 50....

  • christopher27519 Sep 4, 2012

    Selling Obama T-Shirts? Now that's taking a risk just like the same folks who printed 2012 New England Patriots SuperBowl Champs attire...