The SBA’s 8(a) Business Development Program is the crème de la crème of federal government contracting and there is a high bar to entry for admission. Among other things, individuals that are not a member of one of the recognized groups that is automatically presumed to be socially disadvantaged must prove they were socially disadvantaged throughout their life through what is called a social disadvantage narrative. Beyond that, there are a number of other qualifications, such as being economically disadvantaged, a business’s potential for success, and evidence of good character that must also be met. 13 C.F.R. § 124.101. The process is difficult, and once an individual is admitted, they no doubt want to make the most of it.
Oftentimes, small businesses that participate in the 8(a) SBA’s Business Development Program remain in the Program for the full 9 years that the SBA allows, which culminates in the small business “graduating” from the program. 13 C.F.R. § 124.302. Sometimes, the business grows so successfully that it no longer meets the qualifications of being small, and thus is required to graduate early from the 8(a) Program. So how exactly does that happen? Read on to find out.
Congratulations! Your woman-owned small business (WOSB), Sun Corp, has just been awarded a contract. This particular contract was set aside for WOSBs, meaning only WOSBs may be considered for award. Small Corp is a relatively new company, and you have determined that you will need some help to successfully complete performance of the contract. As luck would have it, you are acquainted with the owner of Moon Corp, and Moon Corp is in the business of doing the exact type of work that Sun Corp needs help with. While diligently reading through the contract prior to its execution, you notice the following language:
Well folks, the wait is finally over! The Second Edition of our popular GovCon Handbook on the SBA’s 8(a) Program is live, and it’s available here. In this revised, updated, and expanded Handbook, Steven Koprince and I give you the run-down on all things 8(a) (and as always, we do so in plain English).
Whether you are considering applying to the 8(a) Program, in the midst of the application process, already years into your 8(a) Program term, or a recent graduate/non-8(a) entity hoping to team with an 8(a) company one of these days–this book is for you. It covers everything under the 8(a) sun, including:
In a recent decision, Eminent IT, LLC, B-418570 (June 23, 2020), GAO held that the Department of State improperly removed a requirement from the SBA’s 8(a) program where the solicitation did not create a “new requirement.”
The SBA’s 8(a) program provides a number of opportunities for small businesses owned by socially and economically disadvantaged individuals. In this video, I discuss the economic disadvantage eligibility requirement, highlighting the regulatory changes imposed last Wednesday:
Want to know more about how to apply for the 8(a) program? Check out our 8(a) Handbook here or reach out to us here.
One of the trickiest requirements for admission into the SBA’s 8(a) program is demonstrating social disadvantage. While some groups are presumed socially disadvantaged (as discussed here), social disadvantage can also be demonstrated based on other characteristics not specifically included in the SBA’s regulations. For those characteristics, applicants must submit a “social disadvantage narrative.”
In this video, I provide you the tricks of the trade you’ll need to write a successful narrative:
For assistance drafting your social disadvantage narrative, reach out to us here!