Bass, Berry & Sims attorneys Todd Overman and Taylor Hillman provided insight on how small Alabama businesses can enter the world of federal contracts. The All Small Mentor-Protégé Program (ASMPP) was established by the Small Business Administration (SBA) to extend business development assistance to all small businesses and help them achieve success in competing for federal government contracts. Only 20 of the 511 approved Mentor-Protégé Agreements had Alabama addresses as of May 5, 2018, despite one of the ASMPP’s top 10 district offices being located in Alabama, showing the potential for growth of the program within the state.

The SBA created an all-inclusive program with the Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Businesses, Women Owned Small Businesses, HUBZones, and others, to streamline and enhance the program. Protégés can learn valuable lessons from mentors, including financial support; assistance in navigating the federal procurement bidding, acquisition and performance processes; business development advice including strategic planning and opportunity identification; and guidance on internal business management systems. Mentors provide various forms of assistance without the fear of affiliation risk and can create joint ventures to pursue small business set-aside prime contracts and subcontracts. In the article, the authors provide additional information on ASMPP eligibility requirements, ASMPP agreements and ASMPP joint ventures.

The full article, “How Small Businesses Can Enter the Sea of Federal Procurement,” was published by Business Alabama on March 13, 2019, and is available online.