Certification

We offer guidance and certification for six different categories, and of course you are likely to qualify and pursue more than one. This is a one-page summary(PDF, 249KB) of the information provided below. 

We welcome the opportunity to explore your certification options with you. Call 720-913-1714 or start with certificationinfo@denvergov.org. We host  monthly webinars to help you get started, and we recommend that you start there. Go to the "Events List" button on DSBO's Small Business Certification and Contract Management System to register.

For more information, here are additional resources about your certification:
Frequently Asked Questions about Certification
Required Documents and Application Instructions(PDF, 353KB)

Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE)

The Airport Concession Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (ACDBE)  certification affords small business the opportunity to compete for concessions contracts, either as an operator or supplier, at Denver International Airport as well as other airports receiving federal funding throughout Colorado.

It is race- and gender-conscious. 

BUSINESS SIZE: Your annual revenues must not exceed an overall cap of $56.42 million. The standards for banks, telecommunications companies, and rental car companies are based on the number of employees.

OWNERSHIP: At least 51% of your company ownership must be members of economically and socially disadvantaged groups (Women, Hispanic, Asian, Black, Native American).

TIME IN BUSINESS: You must actively be in business for at least one day, i.e., your trade name is registered with the State of Colorado.

PERSONAL NET WORTH: 51% of your company ownership must be under the Personal Net Worth standard of less than $1.32 million (this amount excludes a primary residence and ownership interest in the company applying for certification). More detail on eligibility requirements.

WORK TYPE: Concessionaire, or provides goods and services to concessionaire(s).

FEE: No application fee or administrative charge.

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE)

The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) certification affords small businesses who meet the definition of disadvantaged an improved opportunity to compete for contracts.

It is race- and gender-conscious. 

BUSINESS SIZE: As of January 13, 2021, your annual revenues must not exceed an overall cap of $26.29 million, averaged over three years.

OWNERSHIP: At least 51% of your company ownership must be members of economically and socially disadvantaged groups (Women, Hispanic, Asian, Black, Native American).

TIME IN BUSINESS: You must actively be in business for at least one day, i.e., your trade name is registered with the State of Colorado.

PERSONAL NET WORTH: All owners must be under the Personal Net Worth standard of less than $1.32 million (this amount excludes a primary residence and ownership interest in the company applying for certification). More detail on eligibility requirements.

WORK TYPE: A commercially useful function.

FEE: No application fee or administrative charge.

Emerging Business Enterprise (EBE)

The Emerging Business Enterprise (EBE) certification allows Denver area emerging businesses to compete with other emerging businesses on specific construction and professional services projects. It is available to firms already certified as MBE/SBE/SBEC/WBE.

It is race- and gender-neutral.

BUSINESS SIZE: For Construction firms, your annual revenues must not exceed $3 million averaged over three years (for Professional Services, must not exceed $1 million).

TIME IN BUSINESS: You must actively be in business for at least six months.

PERSONAL NET WORTH: All owners must be under the Personal Net Worth standard of less than $1.32 million (this amount excludes a primary residence and ownership interest in the company applying for certification).

WORK TYPE: Construction or Professional-Services related.

FEE: $200 non-refundable application fee, or a $50 non-refundable renewal application fee.

 

Minority/Women Business Enterprise (M/WBE)

The Minority/Women Business Enterprise (M/WBE) certification affords small businesses the opportunity to compete for contracts.

It is race- and gender-conscious. 

BUSINESS SIZE: For Construction, your annual revenues must not exceed the full SBA Size Standard averaged over three years (for Professional Services, it is half of the SBA Size Standard, averaged over three years).

OWNERSHIP: At least 51% of your company ownership must be members of economically and socially disadvantaged groups (Women, Hispanic, Asian, Black, Native American).

TIME IN BUSINESS: You must actively be in business for six months.

PERSONAL NET WORTH: All owners must be under the Personal Net Worth standard of less than $1.32 million (this amount excludes a primary residence and ownership interest in the company applying for certification).

WORK TYPE: Construction-related and some covered goods and services.

FEE: $200 non-refundable application fee, or a $50 non-refundable renewal application fee.

 

Small Business Enterprise (SBE) and Defined Selection Pool

The Small Business Enterprise (SBE) certification allows Denver area small businesses to compete for construction-related projects and some covered goods and services funded by the City & County of Denver.

It is race- and gender-neutral.

BUSINESS SIZE: For Construction, your annual revenues must not exceed the full SBA Size Standard averaged over three years (for Professional Services, it is half of the SBA Size Standard, averaged over three years).

TIME IN BUSINESS: You must actively be in business for six months.

PERSONAL NET WORTH: All owners must be under the Personal Net Worth standard of less than $1.32 million (this amount excludes a primary residence and ownership interest in the company applying for certification).

WORK TYPE: Construction-related and some covered goods and services.

FEE: $200 non-refundable application fee.

The Defined Selection Pool program allows certified Small Business Enterprise (SBE) companies to bid and compete as prime contractors on city construction and professional design contracts. A portion of the city’s construction and professional design contracts are designated for exclusive bidding by SBEs. City entities that have reserved projects under the defined selection pool include Public Works, Denver International Airport, General Services, Parks and Recreation, and Public and Environmental Health.

As defined in Article VII, Section 28-204 of the Denver Revised Municipal Code (D.R.M.C.), the Defined Selection Pool is defined as a contract or concession agreement which is determined by the Director to be appropriate for restriction of the selection of the contractor, consultant or concessionaire and, as applicable, subcontractors, subconsultants and suppliers on such contract or concession agreement to the pool of certified SBE.

Please be aware that some projects under the Defined Selection Pool Program will require additional SBE participation. If additional SBE participation is assigned the project, the percentage amount can be found in the Invitation to Bid advertisement and in IB-28 of the Bid document or in the proposal.

  • Award of the project will be strictly limited to currently certified SBE bidders/joint ventures. 
  • SBE certification from the City and County of Denver shall be a condition of responsiveness, and award will only be made to the lowest, responsive qualified SBE bidder.
  • Additional SBE participation may be a requirement of the project. If additional SBE participation has been placed on the project, the defined pool prime contractor must meet this requirement only with certified SBE subcontractors, suppliers and other participants as set forth in Section 28-209 and 28-210, D.R.M.C. This requirement is described in the bid document or proposal.
  • An SBE bidder cannot meet the additional SBE participation requirement through self performance.
  • There is no provision for Good Faith in the Defined Selection Pool program; therefore, if applicable, additional SBE participation on the project must be met. 
  • A Letter of Intent must be submitted to DSBO for the SBE Prime Contractor and each SBE firm identified in the bid document or proposal (if additional SBE participation is placed on the project) or SBE members of a Joint Venture. 
  • Training on how to complete required forms may be provided upon request by the Prevailing Wage section of the Auditor’s Office and DSBO to any SBE who has not previously performed on a project as a Prime Contractor.

FEE: $200 non-refundable application fee, or a $50 non-refundable renewal application fee.

 

Small Business Enterprise Concessionaire (SBEC)

The Small Business Enterprise Concessionaire (SBEC) certification allows qualified Denver area small businesses an improved opportunity to compete as a Concessionaire.

It is race- and gender-neutral.

BUSINESS SIZE: Your annual revenues for food, beverage and retail must not exceed the SBA Size Standard, averaged over three years

TIME IN BUSINESS: You must actively be in business for six months.

PERSONAL NET WORTH: All owners must be under the Personal Net Worth standard of less than $1.32 million (this amount excludes a primary residence and ownership interest in the company applying for certification).

WORK TYPE: Concessionaire.

FEE: $200 non-refundable application fee, or a $50 non-refundable renewal application fee.

 

 

 
DSBO can help you interpret the eligibility requirements. Email us or reference the DSBO Ordinance and Rules & Regulations.