WASHINGTON – The District of Columbia Department of Small & Local Business Development (DSLBD) and the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA) today celebrated the grand opening of the Made in DC retail pop-up at Reagan National Airport, providing a new national and international presence for local makers and small business owners.
“This partnership between the District’s Made in DC program and the Airport Authority reflects Mayor’s Bowser’s strong commitment to supporting local brands and promoting their growth and success,” said DSLBD Director Kristi Whitfield. “The ‘maker movement’ is alive and well in the District of Columbia, and we are excited to see the Made in DC retail pop-up become a reality.”
The Made in DC pop-up, which is implemented in conjunction with the airport’s concessions management contractor MarketPlace Development, will feature a rotating variety of products throughout its stay at the airport.
“We are proud to collaborate with our partners in Washington, D.C., to showcase makers and artisans from our nation’s capital and give travelers the opportunity to bring a piece of the National Capital Region home with them,” said Warner Session, chairman of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority Board of Directors.
All of the Made in DC products featured in the retail space are from DC businesses that are members of the DSLBD program and include apothecary, apparel, art, food, jewelry and stationary items created by 12Past7, Bailiwick Clothing, Culture Socks, Bicycle Trash, Definition Studio, Harper Macaw, Little Likes Kids, Mischo Beauty, O-Mazing Food, Shea Yeleen and The Nineteenth DC.
“We hope the Made in DC pop-up shows all the travelers who think Washington, D.C., is a federal government ‘company town’ that a lot more goes on here than the creation of laws and federal policies – we are also home to a high number of entrepreneurs and creative talent,” said Jack Potter, president and chief executive officer of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority.
Made In DC program member, Rahama Wright, founder and CEO of Shea Yeleen Health and Beauty, curated the first round of local makers for the retail pop-up’s airport debut. Wright is also founder of the Pop-Up Collaborative, a collective of women and minority-owned businesses in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area aiming to provide inclusive business opportunities. The businesses represented in the retail pop-up are all part of the Collaborative as well.
“A favorite African proverb ‘If you want to go fast go alone, if you want to go far go together’ is the inspiration behind the Pop-Up Collaborative. We are a space that uplifts and supports women and minority-owned brands because together we are stronger,” said Rahama Wright. “Working with the Airport Authority, the Made in DC program and MarketPlace Development is an incredible opportunity for us to go far.”
To shop any of the products featured in the pop-up store, visit the kiosk, located pre-security in Reagan National Airport Terminal B/C.
About Department of Small & Local Business Development’s (DSLBD)
The Department of Small and Local Business Development (DSLBD) supports the development, economic growth, and retention of District-based businesses, and promotes economic development throughout the District’s commercial corridors.
About Made in DC
The Made in DC is a program of the DC Department of Small and Local Business Development which aims to support and promote businesses that design, make, produce, and/or assemble products in the District of Columbia. As a response to the momentum and growth of the maker and creative economy in Washington, DC, Made in DC functions as a citywide campaign and platform to create opportunity for maker businesses. Made in DC brings businesses together for resource and experience sharing, as well as function as a conduit and messenger between makers and local government.
About the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority
The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority operates the U.S. Capital Region’s gateways to the nation and the world, Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport and Washington Dulles International Airport, as well as the Dulles Airport Access Highway, the Dulles Toll Road and construction of the Silver Line project, a 23-mile extension of the Metrorail public transit system through northern Virginia. 47.5 million passengers passed through the two airports in 2018.
About MarketPlace Development
MarketPlace Development, a New England Development company, develops and manages airport concession programs across the country. A recognized industry leader for over 20 years, MarketPlace Development works in partnership with airports and airlines to enhance passenger satisfaction and maximize revenue. The Massachusetts-based company is responsible for the concession programs at Boston Logan International Airport, Philadelphia International Airport, Reagan National Airport, and Dulles International Airport and has also worked with numerous airports and airlines across the country. Visit www.marketplacedevelopment.com for more information.