She was put on a proposal with a large prime so that they could get credit for including a disadvantaged business enterprise (DBE) on the team. They got the contract but she never got the work.
He was part of a winning proposal team but his scope ended up being nearly one-fourth of the original because the prime decided they could handle many of his tasks in-house.
They have been waiting for over nine months to get paid for work they completed a year ago as a subcontractor. The prime received payment within thirty days but claims they can't yet pay.
These tales of woe are common among small disadvantaged business owners who pursue government contracts. Tokenism, scope stealing, and late pay aren’t events isolated among particular individuals, within particular industries, or in particular areas. Such predatory behaviors are systemic and affect professional service businesses across the country. Over time, they have become institutionalized and normalized as part of participating in public procurement, a not-so-secret price that small businesses must pay to even attempt to play.
To no one’s surprise, such victimization hasn’t translated into more contracts for small businesses in the public sector. Smalls owned by women and minorities are not getting their fair share of government contracts. We don’t need research studies to know that, but we have dozens to confirm it.
The current solutions aren’t working. And they haven’t worked for forty years. Because collective problems require collective action.
It’s time to confront the status quo. It’s time for systemic change. It’s time for a revolution.
Meet The Amalgamation.
To amalgamate is to unite. That's the foundation of our approach.
The Amalgamation is a collective of, by, and for small disadvantaged businesses that are unified by a common purpose: Working together to increase the success of DBEs in public procurement.
We are reimagining the role of smalls as vendors, as proposal partners, as potential primes, and as agents of change.
We are taking ownership of our opportunities and outcomes by proactively seeking bid opportunities and building our own teams.
We are challenging the traditional prime/sub arrangement that smalls have too long settled for and promoting more equitable partnerships.
We are increasing our visibility and making our mark so no one can say they can't find us. Good faith effort is bad policy and a thinly veiled attempt to address inequity.
If you’re tired of public procurement politics, want to support small businesses, and think it is time to level the playing field for government contracts, you found the right community.
Let's rewrite the rules. Let's make history. Let's amalgamate.