For minority business owners, there are benefits to obtaining the proper certification. By going through the Department of Commerce's Minority Business Development Agency, entrepreneurs can access possible awards under initiatives like the Section 8(a) business development or HUBZone programs. However, they need to make sure they meet the proper criteria, as with any government aid.
To determine this, owners have to look at the fundamentals of their business, including where they are based and how much capital they currently have at their disposal. The 8(a) program, for example, requires individual applicants to place under the economic threshold, while also making sure their business fits an appropriate size.
Eligibility is a more difficult matter than it might seem at first, since it is based on several different subsections. The 8(a) program lists different categories, such as ownership, control and size eligibility. For the latter, the Small Business Administration can look at various relationships in addition to the size of the firm at the time of application.
"Owners can't just depend on the current size of the venture."
Owners can't just depend on the current size of the venture, either, since the SBA will watch it as it grows and evaluate whether it exceeds the allowable size for a "small business." Instead, they need to plan for future growth and measure their own predictions with the government organizations' standards.
One of the more abstract qualifications for entrepreneurs may be the demonstration of "potential for success." The MBDA describes this as a three-pronged requirement: Applicants will be judged based on their access to capital, experience and the licenses they need or already have.
Government grants for small business can help accelerate a minority entrepreneur's hard work and get him or her into position for further growth. Growth Capital Corp. provides guidance for those new to this area in need of it.