IF YOU ARE A SERVICE-DISABLED VETERAN of the United States military, your small business may be eligible to participate in the Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Programs, or SDVO Programs. Yes, that’s “programs,” in the plural—the SBA administers one special program for companies owned and controlled by servicedisabled veterans and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) administers a second such program.
Why participate in the SDVO Programs? The government strives to award 3 percent of prime contract dollars—more than $15 billion annually—to qualified SDVO small businesses. To reach that 3 percent goal, it sets aside many procurements exclusively for competition among SDVO small businesses, and even awards some smaller contracts on a sole source basis, that is, without any competition at all.
Participation in these programs can help your small business grow and thrive, but it comes with strict (and sometimes complex) compliance strings attached. Incorrectly certify that your company is an eligible SDVO small business, and you could face a successful eli-