Magazine article Business Credit

Major Shift Seen as over Half of Key Federal Contracts Now Set Aside for Small Businesses after Flaps over Iraq, Afghanistan and Katrina Sole-Source Contracting

Magazine article Business Credit

Major Shift Seen as over Half of Key Federal Contracts Now Set Aside for Small Businesses after Flaps over Iraq, Afghanistan and Katrina Sole-Source Contracting

Article excerpt

the backlash over the federal government's reliance on solesource contracts with large companies in Afghanistan, Iraq and the Hurricane Katrina clean-up is translating into a major and growing bonanza for small business firms, particularly those run by veterans, women and minorities, according to Synchris, Inc. of Sterling, VA, epipeline of Herndon, VA and Set-Aside Alert of Bethesda, MD. The three D.C.-area firms recently outlined the data and little-understood new trends behind the growing size of the piece of the federal contracting pie that now is becoming available to small businesses.

The share of pre-request for proposal (Pre-RFP) contracting opportunities setaside for small businesses, including women-owned, minority-owned and disabled-veteran-owned, in three key market segments jumped to 52% in 2007 (up from 40% in 2002), while the share of opportunities using full and open competition (open to large firms) dropped from 65% to 55% over the same period, based on the researched opportunities tracked by epipeline (the total percentages add up to more than 100% since some contracts include provisions for both large and small contractors). The analysis focused on all federal preRFP opportunities in three key areas: Information Technology (IT); Operations & Maintenance (O&M) and Architecture, Engineering Construction & Environmental (AEC). The set-aside contracts for small businesses include those carried out under HUBZone/8(a) provisions focusing on minority and womenowned firms and Service Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Businesses (SDVOSB). …

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