The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) today announced that the federal government met its small business federal contracting goal for the first time in eight years – awarding 23 percent, or $83.1 billion, of all federal small business eligible contracting dollars to small businesses in fiscal year 2013.
The Commerce Department played a significant role in that achievement – exceeding its goal of awarding 39 percent of funds to small businesses and receiving an overall “A” rating from SBA for the fourth straight year in a row. In FY13, the Department also surpassed overall federal government and statutory goals for prime contractors who are small disadvantaged businesses, women-owned small businesses, and service disabled veteran-owned small businesses.
U.S. small businesses are the backbone of our economy, and the Commerce Department works to both support those businesses and ensure they know about our many services that can help them grow.
For example, just a couple months ago, Commerce awarded five small businesses with a contract that is expected to save up to $25 million in taxpayer dollars over the next five years. In addition to saving money, contracts that make our work more efficient and effective enable Commerce to focus more resources on our primary mission, including making investments that help businesses of all sizes create jobs and help grow our economy.
To that end, the Department offers a wide array of services to our small businesses and entrepreneurs. For example, Commerce’s National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST) has a Manufacturing Extension Partnership program with centers based around the country who work with small and medium-sized manufacturers to transform their business plans, access new technology and increase exports. As part of the department’s ‘Open for Business Agenda,’ we are working to make more of our data accessible to more people, which supports start-ups and powers small companies.
We have also partnered with SBA on a number of initiatives, including our Economic Development Administration’s Advanced Manufacturing Jobs and Innovation Accelerator Challenge, a national competition that, among other aims, works to encourage the development of small businesses nationwide. Further, Commerce’s Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) works with small and medium-sized minority-owned businesses to help them gain access to contracts and capital, expand to new markets, and get resources about the federal procurement and contracting process.
Today’s announcement is a reflection of the Obama Administration and Commerce Department’s strong commitment to small businesses and their importance in supporting our economic recovery. The administration will continue to increase efforts and collaboration to provide more opportunities for small businesses to compete for and win federal contracts.
To view Commerce’s small business procurement scorecard, as well as a detailed explanation of the scorecard methodology, visit http://go.usa.gov/Nxxd.