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Government Small Business Subcontracting Definitions
Small Business means a firm, including its affiliates, which is independently owned and operated, is not
dominant in its field of operation, and qualifies as a small business under the criteria and size standards in 13
CFR part 121 (see FAR 19.102).
Small Business Liaison Officer (SBLO) administers prime contractor’s small business subcontracting
Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) - small business concern that is at least 51% unconditionally owned by
one or more individuals who are both socially and economically disadvantaged, or a publicly owned business
that has at least 51% of its stock unconditionally owned by one or more socially and economically
disadvantaged individuals and that has its management and daily business controlled by one or more such
Since October 2008, small businesses can self-represent their status as a small disadvantaged business
(SDB) provided they meet SBA SDB eligibility criteria.
Eligible businesses must register their business in the System for Award Management and self-represent as an
SDB. Prime contractors should maintain representations from self-certified SDB suppliers.
Socially disadvantaged individuals are those who have been subjected to racial or ethnic prejudice or
cultural bias because of their identity as members of a group. Social disadvantage must stem from
circumstances beyond their control. In the absence of evidence to the contrary, individuals who are members of
the following designated groups are presumed to be socially disadvantaged:
Native Americans (American Indians, Eskimos, Aleuts, and Native Hawaiians)
Asian Pacific Americans (persons with origins from Japan, China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Korea, Samoa,
Guam, U.S. Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands [Republic of Palau], Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana
Islands, Laos, Cambodia [Kampuchea], Taiwan; Burma, Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Singapore, Brunei,
Republic of the Marshall Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Macao, Hong Kong, Fiji, Tonga, Kiribati,
Tuvalu, or Nauru; Subcontinent Asian Americans (persons with origins from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri
Lanka, Bhutan, the Maldives Islands or Nepal), and
Members of other groups designated by the SBA.
8(a) Firms- a firm that has been accepted into the 8 (a) Business Development Program. This is a nine-
year business development program for socially and economically disadvantaged concerns. Note that 8
(a) contractors are certified as SDB for federal contracting purposes, and are listed in Small Business
Administration’s (SBA) Dynamic Small Business Search (DSBS) on-line directory
(http://web.sba.gov/pro-net/search/dsp_dsbs.cfm). 8(a) program graduates maintain SDB certification
status 3 years from last SBA review.
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HUBZone means a “historically underutilized business zone.” US. Small Business Administration administers
the HUBZone program and certifies companies for eligibility. This program was enacted into law as part of the
Small Business Reauthorization Act of 1997. The official "list" of certified firms is contained within the
Dynamic Small Business Search (DSBS). For more information, see HUBZone home page at
Woman-Owned Small Business (WOSB) - a small business concern which is at least 51% owned by one or
more women; or in the case of publicly owned business, at least 51% of the stock of which is owned by one or
more women; and whose management and daily business operations are controlled by one or more women.
Veteran Owned Small Business (VOSB) - small business concern that is 51% owned and controlled by a
veteran or group of veterans.
Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) - small business concern that is 51% owned
and controlled by a service-disabled veteran (s). Service-disabled veteran means a veteran with a disability that
Control by one or more service-disabled veterans means that both the long-term decision making and the
day-to-day management and administration of the business operations must be conducted by one or more
service-disabled veterans (or , in the case of a service-disabled veteran with permanent and severe disability,
the spouse of permanent caregiver of such veteran).
Ownership by one or more service disabled veterans must be direct ownership. A concern owned principally
by another business entity that is in turn owned and controlled by one or more service-disabled veterans
does not meet this requirement.
Note Veteran’s Administration requires Center for Veterans’ Enterprise (CVE) Verification for Veteran
and Service-disabled Veteran-owned businesses.
Commercial Supplier Diversity Business Definitions
(note: may be large or small businesses)
Women- Business Enterprise (WBE) To qualify as a WBE, a business must be at least 51% owned,
controlled and operated by one or more women.
Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) To qualify as an MBE, a business must be at least 51% owned,
controlled and operated by a minority group member or members