Small Business Resources for Minorities
There are a variety of programs to assist minority groups in starting and expanding their businesses. Read more about these programs below.
8(a) Business Development Program
The SBA’s Section 8(a) Business Development Program provides various forms of assistance (management and technical assistance, financial assistance, government contracting assistance and advocacy support) to foster the growth and development of businesses owned by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals.
SBA assists these businesses, (during a nine-year tenure in the 8(a) Business Development Program), to gain access to the resources necessary to develop their businesses and improve their ability to compete in the mainstream of the American economy.
Business development assistance includes one-to-one counseling, training workshops, and other management and technical guidance required to expand into the federal government contracting arena.
The SBA enters into contracts with other federal agencies and subcontracts the performance of such contracts to 8(a) program participants.
Small Disadvantaged Business Certifications
To qualify as a small disadvantaged business, a firm must be owned and controlled by one or more individuals who are socially and economically disadvantaged. Congress has directed that individuals who are members of certain ethnic groups are presumed to be disadvantaged. Other persons, including women and persons of any race, can also qualify by establishing their disadvantaged status.
Once certified by the SBA, the firm can be added to an online registry of SDBcertified firms maintained in CCR/DSBS. Firms remain on the list for three years. Contracting Officers and prime contractors may search this registry for potential contractors.
For additional information on SBD Certification and Eligibility, visit the SBD Web site at: www.sba.gov/services, and select “Small Business Certifications” from the “Contracting Opportunities” menu in the center of the page.
Native American Business Development
The SBA is also working to ensure that entrepreneurship opportunities are available for American Indians, Native Alaskans and Native Hawaiians seeking to create, develop and expand small businesses.
These groups have full access to the necessary business development and expansion tools available through the agency’s entrepreneurial development, lending and procurement programs.
More information is at: http://www.sba.gov/aboutsba/sbaprograms/naa/index.html.