WOSB and EDWOSB Certifications

As of July 15th the WOSB / EDWOSB certification process will no longer be self-certify. The result will be that firms must go through a more rigorous approval process.

Fee for new Certification process

Price: $2,250 WOSB

Price: $3,500 EDWOSB

Call for a Free Consultation 703-688-3546

WOSB and EDWOSB Benefits

In 2000 Congress mandated that a budgetary goal of 5% of all federal prime contracting dollars went to women-owned small business (approximately $15- 20 billion dollars). In February of 2011 the SBA determined there are 83 (4-digit) NAICS (North American Industry Classification System) Codes where women are significantly underrepresented. To assist women and create inroads into these industries, the SBA has allowed for set-aside contracts to be issued in these NAICS Codes. WOSB certification is comprised of the industries in the NAICS Codes with the least number of women-owned firms or significantly underrepresented by women. EDWOSB certification is comprised of the industries in the NAICS Codes where women have been underrepresented by women. Set-aside contracts will be made available to WOSB and EDWOSB certified firms. A firm holding an EDWOSB certification can bid on both WOSB and EDWOSB set-aside contracts where a firm holding a WOSB certification can only bid on WOSB set-aside contracts.

4 – Digit Designated NAICS Codes 38 45
6 – Digit Designated NAICS Codes 157 373
  • Set-aside contracts – provided contracting officer believes two WOSBs are likely to bid.
  • 5% congressional budget target ($18.5 billion target)
  • Limited competition (approximately 16,400 firms are certified)
  • Joint Venture Opportunities provided WOSB receives 51% of the profit, for WOSBs joint ventures do not have to be approved by the SBA.

WOSB and EDWOSB Qualifications

1. 51% of the firm is owned by a U.S. Citizen(s) who is also female.

2. 51% or controlling interest in the firm must also be able to demonstrate both active day-to-day control over the firm as well as strategic long-term planning.

a. Female ownership must work full-time for the applicant concern.

b. Female owners resume justifies her ability to run the firm.

3. The business must be classified as a Small Business based upon the firm Primary NAICS code. Loose guidelines are below:

a. Products and Services revenue under $4.5 million dollars

b. Real estate revenue under $2 million dollars

c. Manufacturing under 500 employees

d. If you are over these limits look up your exact size standard by clicking here.

Additional Qualifications for ED/WOSB:

  1. Applicant owner's net worth is less than $750,000 excluding (ownership in WOSB firm, primary residence, and money invested in retirement accounts).
  2. Applicant owners AGI (adjusted gross income) is less than $350,000 per year for the past three years. Income received from an S Corporation, LLC, Partnership, or Sole Proprietorship where the money is used to pay taxes or kept in the business entity as retained earnings are excluded from this calculation.
  3. Fair market value of all assets excluding only the applicant owner’s retirement accounts is under $6 million dollars.

WOSB and EDWOSB Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is it permissible to have another job and manage my WOSB firm part-time?

In most cases the answer is no.

2. In order to prove I have the management experience to run my WOSB firm, what breadth of experience is required?

The female owner needs to have the management experience, educational background, and knowledge to be able to successfully run the firm on her own without relying upon others for assistance. Not possessing all technical skills or certifications is acceptable as long as it can be proven that those skills sets are readily available in the open marketplace.

3. Does the SBA look at the husband’s financial situation for determining control of the firm?

Yes, the SBA will review the spouse’s financial situation to determine the firm’s access to credit. If the firm possesses a similar name, shares facilities, same equipment, website or other commonality the firm can lose its certification due to a control issue.

4. What percentage of a contract must the WOSB firm complete and what percentage can be subcontracted out to other firms?

This varies based upon the industry in which the firm obtains the contract: Service Contract – 50% completed by WOSB Supply Contract – 50% completed by the WOSB if they are a manufacturer of the goods. General Construction – 15% completed by the WOSB Specialty Construction – 25% completed by the WOSB

5. What would be the most common cause of a WOSB or EDWOSB eligibility examination?

A protest from an interested 3rd party on a bid submittal.