Women-Owned Businesses

WOSB and EDWOSB

Women-Owned Small Business Concern (WOSB) is one of the categories addressed by the United States Small Business Administration (US SBA).  The Women-Owned Small Business Contract Program was established in 2011.  In order to qualify as a WOSB, first the business must meet the definition of ‘small’ according to the requirements of the NAICS code that goes with its primary product or service.  In addition, the business must be at least 51% owned by one or more women.  The women must be United States citizens.  The management and daily operations of the business must be controlled by one or more women.

Some WOSB may also qualify to be an Economically-Disadvantaged Women-Owned Small Business Concern (EDWOSB).  Once again the business must meet the definition of ‘small’ according to the requirements of the NAICS code that goes with its primary product or service.  In addition, the business must be at least 51% owned by one or more women.  The management and daily operations of the business must be controlled by one or more women.  The women owners must demonstrate that they have been at an economic disadvantage using criteria of personal net worth, adjusted gross income, and fair market value of their assets.

The other requirement is that the business must provide a product or service that falls into at least one of the codes in the list of ‘2012 WOSB NAICS codes’ to be a Women-Owned Small Business.  The list includes those segments of the commercial sector that the US SBA determined have underrepresentation by WOSB.  There is an equivalent list called the ‘2012 EDWOSB NAICS codes’ for the EDWOSB designation.

Goals and Set-Asides

The federal government must attempt to award 5% of the value of its contracts and sub-contracts to WOSB and EDWOSB annually.

Federal Contracting Officers can set certain acquisitions aside so that only WOSB or EDWOSB compete for that award.  The National Defense Authorization Act for 2013 removed the caps on the contract award size for which WOSB and EDWOSB are able to compete.  The Contracting Officer must have a reasonable expectation that at least two WOSB [or EDWOSB] will submit offers in order to make it a set-aside.

Procurement Technical Assistance

All Advisors with the Procurement Technical Assistance Program (PTAP) in New Mexico can provide assistance to business owners who wish to pursue the WOSB or EDWOSB designation.  They can explain the difference between self-certifying and certification by a Third Party as well as review your documents to be submitted to one of the four Third Party Certifiers, whose contact information can be found in the following link:

Third party certifiers for WOSB and EDWOSB

Register Online for free, confidential, one-on-one counseling at your local center:

View Statewide PTAP Events By Date HERE

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