US government contracts add up to bumper year for small businesses

27 June 2011

27 June 2011 | Angeline Albert

Small businesses were awarded nearly $100 billion (£62.6 billion) in US government contracts in the last financial year – the largest yearly spend on these suppliers for more than five years.

Figures from government agency the US SmallBusiness Administration (SBA) revealed that for the 2010 financial year from 1 October 2009 – 30 September 2010, small businesses won deals worth a record $97.9 billion, or 22.7 per cent of government contract spend.

In the 2009 financial year, $96.8 billion (£60.6 billion) – 21.9 per cent of contract spend – went to small firms.   

Each government agency has a different target to hit to contract with small businesses, which is determined annually in consultation with the SBA. The SBA is working to ensure that the sum total of these goals exceeds the 23 per cent target established by US law.

“When the federal government gets contracts into the hands of small businesses, it is a ‘win-win’ situation: small businesses have the opportunity to grow and create jobs and the federal government gets access to some of the most innovative and nimble entrepreneurs,” said SBA administrator Karen Mills.

Last Friday (24 June), the SBA produced smallbusiness procurement scorecardsfor the 2010 financial year, which assesses each government agency’s yearly small business contracting achievement against its goal. Their achievement is graded from A to F.

The SBA is also working with government procurement staff to provide tools to review data, improve procurement systems and conduct training to help increase the amount of business it does with small suppliers.

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