An excellent growth tactic for small businesses is to pair with a larger business to go after work and to learn the ropes of government contracting. One way to do this is to use the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) All Small Mentor-Protégé program. In this program, a small and a large business come together to help the small business grow. Some of the business development areas that might be used to assist the small business include:
- Guidance on internal business management systems, accounting, marketing, manufacturing, and strategic planning
- Financial assistance in the form of equity investments, loans, and bonding
- Assistance navigating federal contract bidding, acquisition, and performance process
- Education about international trade, strategic planning, and finding markets
- Business development, including strategy and identifying contracting and partnership opportunities
- General and administrative assistance
To qualify as a protégé, your business must be small by SBA standards, have industry experience, be organized as a for-profit or as an agricultural cooperative and have a proposed mentor prior to applying for the program. The small business can have no more than two mentors in its lifetime.
A mentor must be organized as a for-profit or as an agricultural cooperative. Mentors can have no more than three protégés at a time.
These agreements are good for three years, with one extension allowable for another three years. There is an annual evaluation report requirement due the SBA.
The small business and the large business that develop a mentor-protégé agreement can form a Joint Venture. Joint Ventures formed this way would qualify for set-aside contracts that the small business is eligible for, such as service-disabled veteran owned, woman-owned and HUBZone contracts.
For no-cost assistance with the All Small Mentor-Protégé Program, contact me at email@example.com
or (307) 772-7372. You can learn more about Joint Ventures and Teaming Arrangements in a free webinar coming up on February 6. To register, visit the events section of our website at WyomingSBDC.org
. We will also be discussing these topics and much more at the 2019 GRO-Biz Conference & Idea Expo coming up on February 20 & 21 in Casper, WY. Visit WyomingSBDC.org/grobiz
to reserve your spot.
The Wyoming SBDC Network is hosted by the University of Wyoming and sponsored by the Wyoming Business Council. Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, conclusions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.