Historically Underutilized Business (HUB) Highlights Women Entrepreneurs

susan-raithel.jpgProducts Unlimited Inc. is one of the many companies doing business with the University of Houston through the Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB) program

The woman-owned small business, which was founded in 1992 and is based in Plano, provides product sourcing for medical, lab, safety, and industrial products and equipment. 

At UH, Products Unlimited works with the School of Nursing at the Sugar Land and Katy campuses to provide kits, supplies for classes, equipment and items for its simulation/skills lab.  Company president Susan Raithel said they have also provided equipment such as beds, ventilators and IV pumps, as well as supplied a few of the labs with various laboratory equipment and supplies. 

The HUB program’s mission at UH is to promote the inclusion of HUB vendors in university procurements. As stated on its website, the program ensures compliance with state HUB laws, assists UH departments in locating HUB vendors, and offers HUBs assistance to facilitate access and contracting opportunities. F. Linelle Clark, Ph.D, is the Director for HUB Operations at UH.  

Companies that are interested in finding out if they qualify for the HUB program must complete an application process. If they qualify, they will be listed in the Comptroller’s online HUB directory. More information about the HUB process is available on the program’s website

Products Unlimited actively sought out information about the HUB program over a decade ago so that it could become a supplier within the UH System. 

“We value the relationships we have with our UH partners,” Raithel said. 

Raithel, who said she was raised in a children’s home and did not have the opportunity to attend a formal college or university, loves being able to work with the University of Houston. 

“As a business woman, I understand the immense value of education and I constantly strive to learn new skills and stay updated with current business affairs,” she said. “Our company supports higher education and offers financial assistance to any employee who wishes to continue their education.” 

HUB Virtual Spot Bid Fair 

The HUB program is participating in the HUB Virtual Spot Bid Fair, hosted by Texas State Senator Royce West, which is scheduled for May 2-3, 2022. Each college or division is asked to provide five HUB-eligible opportunities. Requisitions can be submitted through 5 p.m. Tuesday, April 8. 

The process to send items, selection and notification process are outlined below: 

  • The vendor name can be left blank.  Indicate “2022 Senator Royce West Spot Bid Fair” in the requisition comment field. 
  • Once requisitions are submitted, no cancellations may be made. 
  • Purchasing will prepare the solicitation documents for the bid fair, which will include the university’s terms and conditions. 
  • When preparing the Formal Solicitation Requirements Form, standard purchasing practices as it pertains to evaluation procedures will apply. 

“Please continue to be actively engaged in supporting equity, inclusion and community economic growth – consider a HUB for all procurement needs – all UH personnel with a CougarNet login may search for HUBs using the UH HUB database,” Dr. Clark said.