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Small Disadvantaged Businesses

Program Descriptions

Program Number



Small Disadvantaged Businesses


Federal Agency




Small Business Act of 1953, as amended, Section 7(b)(2), Public Law 85-536, 15 U.S.C. 636(b); Public Law 95-507.






To ensure compliance with the constitutional standards established by the Supreme Court in Adarand Contractors, Inc vs. Pena, relative to Federal action programs that use racial or ethnic criteria as a basis for decision making.


Types of Assistance

Direct Loans.


Uses and Use Restrictions

The Small Disadvantaged Business (SDB) program is a procurement tool designed to assist the government in finding firms capable of providing needed services, while at the same time, helping to address the traditional exclusion firms owned by disadvantaged individuals from contracting opportunities. Participation in the SDB program and the benefits are restricted to those firms who have satisfied the eligibility requirements and have been certified by the Small Business Administration as an SDB.


Eligibility Requirements

Applicant Eligibility

Eligible applicant must be: A small business concern as defined in SBA rules and regulations; firms must be at least 51 percent unconditionally owned and controlled by one or more U.S. citizens who are socially and economically disadvantaged as defined by 13 CFR 124.105, 124.109, 124.110, and 124.111.

Beneficiary Eligibility

Socially and economically disadvantaged individuals and small businesses owned and operated by such individuals; economically disadvantaged Indian tribes including Alaskan Native Corporations and economically disadvantaged Native Hawaiian organizations.


Documentation to establish that all program eligibility criteria are met.


Application and Award Process

Preapplication Coordination

This program is excluded from coverage under E.O. 12372.

Application Procedure

Electronic application through SBA's webpage at

Award Procedure

Applicant is notified of a decision by letter from the Office of Small Disadvantaged Business Certification and Eligibility.


Applications accepted on an ongoing basis.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

Approximately 75 days. The majority are completed within 45 days.


Requests for reconsideration of a declined application may be made within 45 days from the date of service of the decline letter.



Assistance Considerations

Formula and Matching Requirements

Not applicable.

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

Three years renewable.


Post Assistance Requirements


Not applicable.


Not applicable.


Completed applications must be maintained.


Financial Information

Account Identification



Administrative Costs: FY 07 $1,235,000; FY 08 $1,294,000; FY 09 $1,459,000.

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Not applicable.


Program Accomplishments

During fiscal year 2004, nearly 1000 new certifications were issued.


Regulations, Guidelines and Literature

13 CFR Part 124 8(a) Business Development; 124 Subpart B, Eligibility Certification and Protests Relating to Small Disadvantaged Business Programs.


Information Contacts

Regional or Local Office

Not applicable.

Headquarters Office

Office of Small Disadvantaged Business Certification and Eligibility, Small Business Administration, 409 3rd Street, S.W., Washington, DC 20416. E-Mail address:

Web Site Address


Related Programs



Examples of Funded Projects

Not applicable.


Criteria for Selecting Proposals

Not applicable.


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