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The Small Business Association (SBA) is redefining what it means to be a small business today by updating the size standards for 70 specific industry sectors.
Small business is defined on the SBA site as:
The Small Business Act defines a business concern as one that is organized for profit; has a place of business in the U.S.; operates primarily within the U.S. or makes a significant contribution to the U.S. economy through payment of taxes or use of American products, materials or labor; is independently owned and operated; and is not dominant in its field on a national basis. The business may be a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or any other legal form.
Effective July 22, 2013, the new size standards will add more than 17,000 new businesses into the fold. The designation is important because it helps businesses qualify for the Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program. Additionally, if a small business qualifies, it can also compete for federal contracts — of which 23% must be awarded to small businesses. It seems that today, remaining firmly in the small business camp is a higher priority than “getting big,” and this shift in regulation makes it easier for more thriving businesses to stay, well, small.
While the SBA has made small changes in the past, this constitutes a wholesale change in the definition of small business. Over 17,000 additional businesses from agriculture to sports teams are now eligible for small business status.
So let’s celebrate – the ranks of small businesses have just grown by 17,000! These businesses are working every day to build the future of this economy, and we welcome them to the small business community.
Laurie Coots, Small Business Advocate