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Opening Doors Getting your business certified can open a world of opportunities

By Aliza Sherman

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Want to land U.S. government and corporate contracts? Look to the Women's Business Enterprise National Council, which boasts 11 years of certifying Women's Business Enterprises and nine years of holding annual conferences to connect female entrepreneurs with supplier diversity professionals from major corporations.

Today, there are more than 7,500 WBEs, and certification numbers grow by 20 percent each year.

"Certification can help open the doors to corporate contracts," explains Linda Denny, president and CEO of WBENC. "[Women] still have to go in, compete and win the business, but they have an opportunity to bid that they might not have had before." Denny says WBE certification is a great marketing tool for businesses that are at least 51 percent woman-owned, operated and controlled.

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