Historically Underutilized Business Zones Program

What is the HUBZone Program?

Every year, the government allocates $18 billion to HUBZone Businesses. Why is this important for you? The U.S. Government strongly promotes the establishment of small businesses in economically disadvantaged areas. By doing so, they aim to stimulate economic growth and create job opportunities within these communities. This funding is part of the HUBZone program, which stands for Historically Underutilized Business Zones, a program designed to help small businesses in rural and urban communities get preferred access to opportunities for federal procurement.

Encouraging these businesses to employ individuals from their local areas not only helps reduce unemployment but also fosters a sense of community and economic stability. Small businesses are often the backbone of local economies, providing essential goods and services and creating a multiplier effect that benefits surrounding businesses as well. By supporting these enterprises, the government ensures that economic benefits permeate through the local community, improving the quality of life for residents.

This initiative is a crucial step towards bridging the economic gap and ensuring prosperity is more evenly distributed across the country. When small businesses thrive, they contribute to a more vibrant and resilient economy, capable of withstanding economic downturns and fostering long-term growth. Moreover, the success of these businesses can inspire innovation and entrepreneurship within the community, leading to a cycle of growth and opportunity for future generations.

What are the Benefits of Getting HUBZone Certified

Federal law mandates that a portion of all government contracts be awarded to HUBZone-certified businesses. This certification not only provides you with preferential treatment in open-bid contracts but also gives you a competitive edge when competing for these lucrative government projects. Moreover, it allows you the flexibility to subcontract the awarded work, enabling you to leverage partnerships with other small or specialized firms. This creates a robust network of collaboration and opportunity, enhancing your business’s growth and sustainability in the market.

In addition to these advantages, HUBZone certification can significantly increase your visibility and credibility in the industry. By being recognized as a certified business, you gain access to various government resources and support programs designed to help small businesses thrive. These programs often include training, mentorship, and financial assistance, which can further bolster your company’s capabilities and competitive stance. Embracing this certification can therefore open doors to new opportunities and partnerships that might otherwise be inaccessible, ultimately contributing to a more prosperous and stable business environment.

Certification Requirements

To become HUBZone certified, your business must meet the following criteria:

  • Qualify as a small business
  • Be at least 51% owned and controlled by a Community Development Corporation, U.S. citizens, an agricultural cooperative, or an Indian tribe, or a Native Hawaiian organization
  • Maintain its principal office within a HUBZone
  • Ensure that no less than 35% of its employees reside in a HUBZone
HUBZone certification for businesses. Certified HUBZone program for federal contracts.

Become HUBZone Certified

Want to determine if your business qualifies and benefits from the HUBZone program? Our dedicated federal contracting specialists are here to assist you every step of the way, providing expert guidance and support. From initial assessment to final certification, we ensure a smooth and efficient process tailored to your needs. CLICK HERE to begin the certification process and unlock new opportunities for growth and development!

HUBZone Certification

Frequently Asked Questions

The HUBZone (Historically Underutilized Business Zones) program is a U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) initiative designed to promote economic development and employment growth in economically distressed areas by providing access to federal contracting opportunities.

  • Principal Office Location: The business’s principal office must be located in a designated HUBZone.
  • Employee Residency: At least 35% of the business’s employees must reside in a HUBZone.
  • Ownership: The business must be owned and controlled by U.S. citizens, a Community Development Corporation, an agricultural cooperative, or an Indian tribe.
  • Size Standard: The business must meet the SBA‘s size standards for small businesses.

HUBZone-certified businesses gain access to:

  • Competitive and Sole-Source Contracting: Opportunities for set-aside contracts and sole-source contracts in federal procurement.
  • Price Evaluation Preference: A 10% price evaluation preference in full and open contract competitions.
  • Subcontracting Opportunities: Increased visibility and potential partnerships with large contractors who have HUBZone requirements in their subcontracting plans

Yes, a business can hold multiple SBA certifications, including HUBZone, 8(a), Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB), Economically Disadvantaged Women-Owned Small Business (EDWOSB), and Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB). Combining these certifications can maximize access to federal contracting opportunities and benefits. Each certification has its own eligibility criteria, so it’s important to ensure your business meets the requirements for each program. In addition, having a current and up-to-date SAM registration is required to take advantage of additional benefits for contracting with the Federal Government. By holding multiple certifications, businesses can leverage a wider range of set-aside contracts, price evaluation preferences, and subcontracting opportunities, enhancing their competitive edge in the federal marketplace.

HUBZone certification must be renewed every three years to maintain eligibility. This renewal process involves verifying that the business continues to meet the program’s criteria, such as location and employment standards. Additionally, businesses must annually update their information, including any changes in ownership, business address, or employee status, to ensure ongoing compliance with HUBZone program requirements. Regular updates help the program accurately track and support companies committed to investing in underutilized business zones.

Contact one of our contract specialists at the Federal Contracting Center today for assistance in renewing your HUBZone certification.

If a business no longer meets the 35% employee residency requirement, it must notify the SBA immediately. Failure to meet this requirement can jeopardize the business’s HUBZone status, which is crucial for maintaining federal contracting opportunities. If the business cannot rectify this issue within the given timeframe, it may lose its HUBZone certification, leading to the potential loss of significant contracts and advantages.

The contract specialists at the Federal Contracting Center are ready to provide comprehensive guidance and support to help your business regain compliance. They can assist with identifying eligible employees, adjusting your workforce strategy, and navigating the re-certification process, ensuring that your business remains competitive and compliant.

Yes, joint ventures between HUBZone-certified businesses and non-HUBZone businesses can qualify for HUBZone contracts if specific criteria are met. The HUBZone business must serve as the managing venturer and possess at least 51% ownership of the joint venture entity. Additionally, the joint venture is required to perform at least 50% of the contract work and adhere to all relevant regulations and requirements.

Joint ventures offer small businesses a valuable avenue for collaboration and access to larger federal contracting opportunities while retaining their HUBZone status. Furthermore, if other joint venture partners hold SBA certifications, such as Veteran-Owned Small Business (VOSB) or Women-Owned Small Business (WOSB), additional benefits and advantages may be realized. These additional certifications can enhance the joint venture’s eligibility for a broader range of set-aside contracts, providing even greater opportunities for growth and success.

Yes, if a business’s HUBZone certification is denied or revoked, it can reapply. The business must address the reasons for denial or revocation and demonstrate compliance with HUBZone requirements. In addition, there is currently a 90-day waiting period before a business can reapply after being denied.

For more information and assistance with reapplying for HUBZone certification, contact us at the Federal Contracting Center (FCC) today. Our experts are standing by to help you succeed in the federal marketplace.

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TO RENEW YOUR SAM Registration

Please call 1-(855)-700-5143 For Direct Assistance

Monday-Friday, 8:30 AM - 8:00 PM ET

A System for Award Management (also referred to as SAM) Registration must be renewed annually to stay compliant and active. FCC recommends that businesses renew 90 days before the SAM expires to prevent service penalties and/or interruptions.