NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)--By 2030, the global talent shortage could reach 85.2 million people, costing companies trillions of dollars in lost economic opportunity.  To solve the widening skills gap, particularly in underprivileged communities, minority-owned technology company Overland-Tandberg, today announced the launch of its Bridge 2 Technologies (B2T) initiative. In conjunction with the launch and to celebrate Black History Month and the firm’s 40th anniversary, Overland-Tandberg will ring the closing bell at the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square. Following the bell ringing, Chairman and CEO, Eric Kelly, will host a leadership forum to uncover pathways to collectively bridge the digital divide, develop the workforce of the future and improve economic equality. Kelly will be joined by presidents from leading universities, executives and board members of Fortune 25 corporations and non-profits, including JPMorgan Chase, several members of the Billion Dollar Roundtable, U.S. Black Chambers, National CARES Mentoring Movement, and the National Minority Supplier Development Council.
Bridge 2 Technologies will bring together a cross-section of executives and thought leaders from various industries around the world to address the compounding effects of the digital divide, including the workforce gap, economic inequality and the lack of capital and mentorship to fuel business growth. The new initiative aims to: build a global ecosystem comprised of leading companies that highly value diversity and inclusion and a partnership framework to positively impact students, professionals, managers, executives, board members and business owners; and close the digital divide. Bridge 2 Technologies will also enable technology-focused startups created by founders of color to access capital.
“Top CEOs today loudly proclaim a commitment to ‘diversity and inclusion,’ but not much has changed in almost two decades. The lack of diversity may be the weakness that unseats the technology industry’s supremacy as an entrepreneurial center of excellence,” said Eric Kelly, Overland-Tandberg’s CEO. “We have received overwhelming interest in this new initiative and are hopeful to drive change starting today. Our mission with Bridge 2 Technologies is to foster a new paradigm that leverages technology and the establishment of new global partnerships to substantively bridge the digital divide.”
“We’re committed to collaborating with clients like Overland-Tandberg to drive measurable improvements in economic equality, diversity and the development of tomorrow’s skilled workforce. Access to capital and technology are becoming increasingly critical to achieve those goals,” said Frederick Royall III, Managing Director, JPMorgan Chase. “The Bridge 2 Technologies initiative will be an important force in strengthening the ways that corporations engage with diverse companies and candidates around the world.”
The Leadership Forum on Economic Equality, Education and the Future Workforce Convenes at Nasdaq MarketSite
The forum, titled “Global Intellect: Education, Pipeline, Non-Profit, Economic Equality and Technology,” will be moderated by Eric Kelly, and take place on February 11, at 4:30pm (ET) at the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square. Panelists will include David Wilson, President, Morgan State University; Shellye Archambeau, Board Director, Verizon and Nordstrom; Susan L. Taylor, Founder and CEO, National CARES Mentoring Movement; Adrienne Trimble, President and CEO, National Minority Supplier Development Council; and Larry Quinlan, Global Chief Information Officer, Deloitte.
“At Nasdaq, we believe our commitment to diversity, inclusion and belonging is essential to our success,” said Nelson Griggs, President, Nasdaq Stock Exchange. “We aspire to continue building a culture that is inclusive for all and a workplace where our employees feel connected and empowered to succeed. In celebration of Black History Month, we’re honored to host the event with Overland-Tandberg to invest and develop the workforce of the future.”
Overland-Tandberg Celebrates Black History Month, the Bridge 2 Technologies Initiative and 40th Anniversary by Ringing the Nasdaq Closing Bell
Overland-Tandberg will ring the closing bell at the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square today, in celebration of Black History Month, the launch of the Bridge 2 Technologies initiative and the firm’s 40th Anniversary. The event will be streamed across media outlets globally. Eric Kelly will lead the closing bell ringing ceremony at 4:00pm (ET) today, and will be joined by Overland-Tandberg employees, corporate partners, leaders in education and non-profits.
“It’s a tremendous honor to ring the Nasdaq closing bell to commemorate our 40th anniversary and Black History Month. We are also honored to host the inaugural Leadership Forum on Global Intellect at the Nasdaq MarketSite in Times Square. As a minority-owned global technology company, this discussion is imperative to creating a shared understanding of the global collaboration and technology necessary to drive change,” concluded Kelly.
Celebrating 40 years in operation, Overland-Tandberg is a global technology company that develops and manufactures hybrid cloud IT infrastructure and data protection solutions enabling businesses, large and small, to securely manage and protect their digital assets. Serving Enterprise, Small to Mid-size Enterprise (SME), Small to Medium-sized Businesses (SMB), and Small Office Home Office (SoHo) markets and spanning over 90 countries, Overland-Tandberg’s brands have created a rich and trusted heritage across the globe. At Overland-Tandberg, empowerment of people is essential to unlocking the virtues of progressiveness and inclusion, placing the company in front of the competitive landscape and ensuring the company is ready for the next 40 years, and beyond. To learn more please visit: www.overlandtandberg.com
 Future of Work: The Global Talent Crunch, Korn Ferry, 2018, dsqapj1lakrkc.cloudfront.net/media/sidebar_downloads/FOWTalentCrunchFinal_Spring2018.pdf