Certification Frequently Asked Questions


Yes, small businesses can be certified for various designations, including WBE, MBE, VBE, and DBE. Small businesses may also be eligible for other certifications, such as HUBZone and 8(a) certifications.

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Different Certifications Have Different Acronyms. For Example:

WBE = Women Business Enterprise
MBE = Minority Business Enterprise
VBE = Veteran Business Enterprise
VOSB/SDVOSB – Veteran Owned/Service-Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business
LGBTE = Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Enterprise
DOBE – Disability Owned Business Enterprise
WOSB = Woman Owned Small Business
DBE = Disadvantaged Business Enterprise
SBE= Small Business Enterprise

States and Cities may have other certification acronyms including combining them, such as WMBE or M/WBE, etc.

This is not a comprehensive list, but meant to give you an idea of what you and your company may pursue, if you qualify.


Certification is not always required to do business with the government, but it can be beneficial. Some government contracts may require certification as a prerequisite for bidding or eligibility.