Minority Business Certification

The Minority and Small Business Development Division administers a Minority Business Certification Program for economically and socially disadvantaged minority- and women-owned businesses to help them grow. Certification can be a valuable resource to new businesses, providing help with marketing and identifying public procurement opportunities with schools and government agencies.

A minority business is a socially and economically disadvantaged small business concern organized for profit as defined under the Small Business Act, (15 U.S.C.S., Section 637[a]) and performing a commercially useful function. The business must have one or more minority or female owners with controlling interest.

Minority businesses not eligible to participate in the program include charitable institutions or nonprofit enterprises, newspapers, magazines, radio or television broadcasting companies or similar enterprises through which editorial opinions are expressed, and businesses that engage in lending directly or indirectly.

Certification confirms that a minority- or women-owned business is a credible entity and attests to the following:

  • The owner is a citizen or lawful permanent resident of the United States domiciled in Mississippi.
  • The owner is a member of an ethnic and disadvantaged group such as: Black American, Hispanic American, Asian-Pacific American, Native American, Asian-Indian American, or id a woman.
  • The business is organized for profit and the company is a corporation or a partnership. Minorities or women should own and control 51 percent of the business management and daily operations.
    • Control is comprised of two parts: managerial and operational. The minority or women owner(s) must demonstrate responsibility for the critical areas of the operations and must be able to make independent and unilateral business decisions.
    • The minority or women owner(s) must demonstrate that he/she independently makes basic decisions in daily operations.
    • Ownership and control by minorities and women shall be real, continuing, and shall go beyond the pro-forma ownership of the applicant as reflected in ownership documents.
  • The business enterprise must have operations physically located in the state of Mississippi.

Federal Business Certification

The Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) program is a federal program operated by the United States Department of Transportation.

Small Business Administration Certification

The U.S. Small Business Administration defines a “small business” in terms of the number of employees over the past year or average annual receipts over the past three years. Small business certifications can help businesses compete in the marketplace.

National Minority Supplier Development Council

The National Minority Supplier Development Council, Inc. ® (NMSDC®) provides a direct link between corporate America and minority-owned businesses. NMSDC is one of the country’s leading business membership organizations.

Arkansas-Mississippi Minority Supplier Development Council

The South Regions Minority Supplier Development Council (SRMSDC) is the premier certifying organization for ethnic minority-owned businesses interested in doing business with Arkansas and Mississippi corporations.

Women Business Enterprise National Council

Women Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) Certification gives women-owned businesses the ability to compete for real-time business opportunities provided by WBENC Corporate Members and government agencies.